Kenya election: Uhuru Kenyatta defeats Raila Odinga

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Kenya election: Uhuru Kenyatta defeats Raila Odinga

Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta has been re-elected following Tuesday’s election, officials say.

Mr Kenyatta, in office since 2013, took 54.3% of votes, ahead of his rival Raila Odinga, with 44.7%.

After the announcement, Mr Kenyatta called for unity, telling opposition supporters: “I reach out to you… We are all citizens of the same republic”.

But the opposition rejected the results even before they were declared, calling the process a “charade”.

However, it has been endorsed by international observers. Mr Kenyatta said they had ensured a “free, fair and credible election”.

Angry protests have started in the city of Kisumu – an opposition stronghold – and in various slums of the capital Nairobi, including Kibera, where businesses are said to have been attacked.

Police, who were deployed in anticipation of the results, have fired tear gas in several locations.

Fires have been lit by protesters on a road in the heart of Kisumu, a reporter says. Gunshots have also been heard.

Earlier, Mr Odinga’s supporters said he had won, and published their own figures. The electoral commission said this was “illegal and premature”, and said basic mathematical errors had been made.

Many observers fear a repeat of the violence after the disputed election 10 years ago, when more than 1,100 Kenyans died and 600,000 were displaced.

Mr Kenyatta has urged peace. “We have seen the results of political violence. And I am certain that there is no single Kenyan who would wish for us to go back to this,” he said.

Ahead of the results, Mr Odinga had called on his supporters to remain calm, but added that he did not control anyone, and that “people want to see justice”.

Raila Odinga has come up short again in what was his fourth and probably last attempt to become the president of Kenya.

Polls had shown that he was tied with President Kenyatta in a race tipped to go either way. Well, they were wrong. An opposition alliance’s backing for Mr Odinga was not enough to stop Mr Kenyatta’s re-election.

The 72-year-old opposition leader had campaigned as a change candidate, calling himself the biblical Joshua and promising to lead Kenyans to Canaan, the promised land.

Despite the fact that he rallied and excited thousands across the country, a majority of voters have rejected his message, or rather rejected him, and embraced Mr Kenyatta’s vision of transforming the country.

This election was also about the political duel between the Kenyatta and Odinga families, which dates back to Kenyan independence in 1963. Once again, the Kenyatta camp has won.

On Friday, North Korea’s official KCNA news agency accused Washington of a “criminal attempt to impose nuclear disaster upon the Korean nation”.

Pyongyang’s media outlet said America was making “desperate efforts” to test weapons in the Korean peninsula.

The US is “the mastermind of nuclear threat, the heinous nuclear war fanatic”, the report said.

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