Tue, 05 Dec 2023

Nairobi [Kenya], August 16 (ANI): Kenya's Deputy President William Ruto has won the presidential election, the electoral commission chairman Wafula Chebukati announced on Monday.

He narrowly beat his rival, Raila Odinga, taking 50.49 per cent of the vote.

"Thank you Kenya for the biggest honour of my life. I am ready to serve you," Ruto tweeted. "I will work for all Kenyans. We will go out of our way to deliver on our pledges. We will serve all equally. This will be your government; the government of the people of Kenya," he said in another tweet.

Chebukati said Ruto garnered 7176,141 votes, or 50.49 per cent of the total votes cast ahead of veteran opposition leader Raila Odinga who garnered about 6942,930 votes, or 48.85 per cent of the votes, Xinhua news agency reported.

Ruto, who spoke soon after receiving a certificate to confirm his victory pledged to extend a hand of friendship to political rivals, unite the country and advance shared growth and prosperity.

"The people of Kenya have assigned us a responsibility to execute and I promise to run a transparent, open and democratic government that serves everyone fairly," said 55-year-old Ruto.

The announcement was delayed amid scuffles and allegations of vote-rigging by Odinga's campaign. Four of the seven members of the electoral commission were absent at the announcement.

"We cannot take ownership of the result that is going to be announced because of the opaque nature of this last phase of the general election," said Juliana Cherera, the IEBC vice-chairperson.

The sudden split in the commission came minutes after Odinga's chief agent said they could not verify the results and made allegations of "electoral offences" without giving details or evidence.Odinga didn't come to the venue for the declaration.

Ruto's declaration as Kenya's fifth president-elect followed gruelling days of verification of votes transmitted from 46,229 polling stations countrywide, at the national tallying centre in the capital, Nairobi. (ANI)

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