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‘Declare Uhuru Kenyatta President After Odinga’s Withdrawal From Rerun’ – Vice President Ruto Asks IEBC.

Kenya’s vice-president William Ruto has now called on the IEBC to declare Uhuru Kenyatta president following Raila Odinga’s withdrawal from the presidential rerun.

And members of parliament from Kenya’s Jubilee Party have also asked the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to declare Kenyatta unopposed.

Odinga announced yesterday that he would not take part in the presidential rerun despite his successful petition of the August poll which declared Kenyatta President.

Odinga said his withdrawal would give the electoral commission enough time to introduce reforms that would help deliver a more credible election.

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

Kenyatta has however said he is ready to proceed with the new vote as planned.

The IEBC said Kenyatta had won the August vote by a margin of 1.4 million votes – or 54 per cent of the total, compared to Mr Odinga’s 44 per cent.

And a section of Jubilee members of parliament want the electoral body to declare Kenyatta elected unopposed, local media reports.

Moses Kuria (Gatundu South), Kanini Kega (Kieni), Gideon Keter (nominated), and Catherine Waruguru (Laikipia) were among those who yesterday said the has no option but to hand victory to their candidate.

Kuria cited his own example in 2014, saying IEBC declared him the winner of a by-election after his sole challenger, Joachim Kamere, pulled out of the race.

“A PRECEDENT WAS SET IN AUGUST 2014 WHEN MY NAME WAS GAZETTED AS THE GATUNDU MP LESS THAN TWO WEEKS TO THE ELECTIONS. THIS WAS AFTER MY COMPETITOR, ON HIS OWN VOLITION, OPTED OUT OF THE RACE. SINCE RAILA HAS DONE THE SAME, WE EXPECT IEBC TO DECLARE KENYATTA ELECTED UNOPPOSED,”

said Kuria.

Kega said: “In a situation where there are two candidates and one pulls out of the race voluntarily, the remaining one should be declared the winner and sworn into office. That is the only logical thing for IEBC to do.”

Keter said Odinga’s withdrawal did not come as a surprise.

“It has been clear that he is not ready for the repeat election. The only candidate left in the repeat presidential race, Uhuru Kenyatta, should be declared the winner. There is no need to waste taxpayers’ money going for another election.”

While making the announcement yesterday, Raila asked IEBC to cancel the October repeat presidential election, noting that his decision meant that fresh nominations must be held.

Waruguru, the Laikipia woman representative, asked the Opposition chief to stop issuing ultimatums and conditions to the IEBC.

“Raila does not have authority to do so since he quit from the presidential race,”  said Waruguru.

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