Kenya's opposition leader withdraws from October 26 repeat polls

KENYA: Police teargas opposition protesters as US express worry ahead of presidential poll

Kenya opposition leader Raila Odinga Tuesday said he is withdrawing from a re-run of the presidential elections scheduled for October 26.

"We deem that the fresh election ordered by the Supreme Court can not therefore be held", they statement by Nasa reads.

Uhuru will not be declared victor anytime soon.Photo:Uhuru Kenyatta/Facebook.

The statement further said the commission had taken the necessary steps to guarantee a credible fresh presidential election. He said if all the NASA demands were not met, there would be no reason to run in an election that "would be rigged".

The IEBC would then go ahead and hold the election by printing the ballots with the Nasa candidate therein and supervise voting on October 26 and thereafter declare a victor.

The Supreme Court annulled the result of the original 8 August poll, which saw Uhuru Kenyatta declared victor, after finding irregularities.

The NASA coalition also said it will hold protests across the country tomorrow (Oct. 11) under the motto of "No reforms, no elections".

Kenyan voters turn out in large numbers on August 8 after a tight race between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Odinga, his longtime rival. Experts say the re-run elections look increasingly unlikely to happen.

In response, while speaking to supporters during a campaign rally in Kenya's Coast region Tuesday, Kenyatta said he hoped there would be an election on October 26.

Furthermore, Odinga argued that the amendments are meant to legalise and regularise the illegalities that led to the invalidation of the August 8 election.

Kenyatta termed the decision a "judicial coup".

In reaction to the expected vote next week, the United States, a major donor to the Kenyan government and its security forces, said in a sharply worded statement on Friday: "Changing electoral laws without broad agreement just prior to a poll is not consistent with global best practice (and) increases political tension".

The Supreme Court nullified President Uhuru Kenyatta's August re-election citing illegalities in the August 8 vote and the electoral commission's refusal to allow scrutiny of its computer system.

"While the Commission was not able to determine whether the action to use force by security agents was predetermined and targeted, it is clear from our analysis that majority of the victims were from one ethnic community and from informal settlements", the report said. He blamed them for irregularities during the August 8 vote.

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