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Kenyan Court Throws Out Kenyatta’s Win In Presidential Election

Saying that Kenya’s recent national election that gave President Uhuru Kenyatta another term in office was held in an unconstitutional manner, the country’s supreme court has annulled the results of the Aug. 8 vote. The surprising announcement prompted celebrations by opposition candidate Raila Odinga.

The turnabout comes weeks after the elections commission said Kenyatta had beaten Odinga by more than 1 million votes. The court’s decision did not go into deep detail about what led it to invalidate the election.

From Nairobi, NPR’s Eyder Peralta reports:

“The opposition claimed a vast conspiracy to rig the election and now in a 4-2 decision, the Supreme Court has found there were so many irregularities, they affected the integrity of the elections.

“The court has ordered another election within the next 60 days. But the opposition says they can’t trust the same body that bungled this election to carry out a new one.”

Kenyan election officials had tried to create a “rig-proof” system for this election, implementing a decentralized electronic reporting system and a biometric identification system.

But there have been unusual stories about the nation’s system, including the murder and torture of a high-ranking elections official in July. And surprising details about the vote emerged during this week’s court proceedings, including the news that 20 percent of the tallying forms at the constituency level did not have watermarks, a required security feature.

Odinga’s campaign has insisted that the results were manipulated, going so far as to present an alternate vote tally that showed the challenger leading the incumbent by several hundred thousand votes. But the origin of those numbers was unclear.

After the startling decision was announced, more than 20 heads of diplomatic missions in Kenya issued a joint statement calling Friday “an important moment for Kenya.”

The diplomats from the U.S., the EU, and 22 other countries urged the country’s leaders and officials to make the upcoming vote “free, fair, credible, and peaceful. ”

The diplomats added, “All electoral processes can be improved, and we will continue to support Kenya’s institutions in this important work. The transparent legal process and the parties’ respect for the Court’s decision reflect the strength of Kenya’s democracy.”

For more context of the political dynamic in Kenya — and the deep rifts that in the past have erupted into violence — here’s how Eyder described the Kenyatta-Odinga rivalry:

“Odinga’s struggle for power actually begins with his father. Jaramogi Oginga Odinga was the country’s first vice president, but he ended up in opposition after a falling out with Kenya’s first president, Jomo Kenyatta.

“It set up a conflict that persists today – liberal versus conservative, the Luo tribe versus the Kikuyu tribe. This is 72-year-old Raila Odinga’s fourth run for president and the second time he’s running against Jomo Kenyatta’s son Uhuru Kenyatta.”


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  1. It is very consoling when the ordinary citizens can fall back on the courts for protection against the rich, the powerful, the corrupt and overbearing. The courts overruled Donald Trump’s ruling on illegal immigrants, giving a breath of fresh air for innocent children caught in the fangs of a complicated, precarious situation. Kenya’s court too have boldly opted to uphold transparency and bury murky operations that tarnish the nation’s democracy.

    Ordinary democracy would appear to offer more hope than advanced ones that tend to tie the hands of judges at the helm.

  2. Can Cameroon court learn from these, a bunch of useless old people seating at the helm of the country but can’t make decisions that will help make the country good, all they do is sing biya’s praises and do everything they can to keep him in power Cpdm thugs calling themselves supreme court judges.

  3. A well-functioning judiciary system that is free from the influence of political machine is with no doubt have the power to shape a society where even the poor have their spaces in the judicial cube. Although our geopolitical differences set us on a divided front, sometimes it is better to copy from where success has been seeded. Our lovely country needs the Georgian experience to revamp our judicial, education and law enforcement agencies.

    I remember in April 2008, the Constitution on the presidential term was changed, in Nigeria same was attempted but failed. Time has a special way of fixing problems….

  4. Vaiocomputers

    I am not surprise.They may have some issues but always have respect for this country.If u compare Kenya and Cameroon in any aspect…you may just be comparing New York with Ekona.Ekona in this case is Cameroon.

  5. Vaiocomputers

    That means John Kerry with a head like a plum and others lied to the Kenyan people that the elections were fair.Even if Raila is defeated again,at least they will be proud of their judicial system,not that kind of ras tuge dynamics we have in Cameroon

  6. Vaiocomputers

    Alex Dipanda Mouelle had this same opportunity to bury this native pig from the south and be remembered in history in a positive light,he chosed to dined with him.The only thing biya gave him was a tarred road to his village.

    • First Cameroon needs a thorough change in its constitution, one the president is not above the law. Then the judiciary to be an independent body. In Kenya all the seven judges are interviewed in public and the sessions are broadcasted live on TVs, same goes to police heads. The public can challenge someone’s candidacy by providing proof of irregularity.The head of supreme court was the least qualified and was selected when he insisted that he can never work on sarturday been his Sabbath day no matter what the case. This became an issue since supreme court cases run in a marathon manner but he asked to be dropped if his faith was to bar him.The panel said he stands with his principles and can never been swayed easily

  7. A Cameroonian court cannever throw out any verdict about Biya, because he is toujours chaud gars, Commander-in-chief of the armed forces, boss of the magistracy, Fon of Fons, Nom Ngui, the best student of French leaders and above all everything in Cameroon is done with the hautes instructions du Chef de l’etat!

  8. This is happening in another Africa country!!!
    Shame to all those Cameroonians who think they are more patriotic than others because they support the Francophone’s dictatoship regime.

  9. l,enemi dans la Maison

    Its only in an English speaking country that you can hear such an historic judgement and separation of powers in African Democracies. On the other hand, Biya is issuing a decree over a court to free some people and leave others over the same problem without even telling us their real crime in line with the constitution of the land. Even if Mr Raila does not win the election, much would have been tested proven as concerns separation of powers in kenyan Democracy

  10. Like all African nation’s, Kenya too has its own tribal headaches going as far back as precolonial times. The kikuyu did not fight alone in the may may, yet from Mzee Jomo Kenyatta till today, they would rather tolerate the kalenjins (Mwai Kibaki) that make room for us the luos.

    Always the same issue – ligged erection(rigged election) as if the luos cannot government.

    Ninataka Gold Harp baridi sana na chakula mzuri.

  11. Stick parliment and local goverment meetings live on television and radio,public officials have to do what they say then .

  12. If the elections were indeed unfair good decision from the panel however we as Africans especially Cameroonian should drop this useless culture of elections contestation. We must learn to accept the results and move on ..one man or the other the most important thing is human lives and the development of the country . Now more than 200 people lost their lives is this decision going to bring them back ? I don’t think so . Meanwhile I’m shocked that people are already antagonizing the one in power as if he couldn’t have won fair and square ? Just so you know people even in the opposition they rig too .

    • [email protected] winning an election means more responsability to serve people ,its not a case of sticking the results in a draw and patting each other on the back ! It means working from 7 am to 9 at night virtually the next day serving the people that voted you in ,who will …….vote you back out if you dont serve them and the party will demote you if that could happen before the next election anyway .Obviously the Kenyans got fed up with the bad service in comparison to how much they,the electorate, have to work and any loss of life due to elections just shows how disorganised ,on purpose, their system was with whoever is in power at the momment.That lose of lifes should be thourghly,publicaly investigated so it wont ever happen again.

  13. cameroon is far away from such moves..
    Even after 50 years we will not have reached the level where Kenya is today…

    We dont even know fair elections in cameroon..
    we dont know to be organized..
    The misture again make things just too worse…(Douala-,Yaounde the chop broke pot mentality people) .
    We have been in chaos so long to the extend that we think chaos is what fit us best…

  14. Herbs4nationHealing.

    FRANCOPHONE Africa in general are still in deep sheeet, but for one or two.