Dissenting IEBC Commissioners reaffirm rejection of Kenya election result

Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) official stamps on a presidential ballot paper for a voter during Kenya's general election at the Masurura primary school polling station in Masurura on August 9, 2022. Yasuyoshi CHIBA / AFP
Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) official stamps on a presidential ballot paper for a voter during Kenya’s general election at the Masurura primary school polling station in Masurura on August 9, 2022. /AFP

Four top officials from Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) on Tuesday again distanced themselves from the presidential election result announced on Monday.

The four, including Vice Chair Juliana Cherera, Francis Wanderi, Irene Masit and Justus Nyang’aya, issued a press briefing at the same time the Commission’s Chairperson Wafula Chebukati was announcing William Ruto as the winner of the August 9 vote.

They stated that they could not take ownership of the result as the final bit of the electoral process had been “opaque.”

On Tuesday, they issued a second press briefing to explain their stand.

The commissioners read out four issues that they said advised their decision, including what they alleged was an erroneous aggregation of the candidates’ percentage of votes garnered.

“The aggregation of the percentages of the results scored by the four presidential candidates who were on the ballot as declared by Mr Chebukati presented to us a mathematical absurdity that defies logic,” said Cherera.

The results declared by The IEBC chair showed Ruto emerged the winner with 50.49 percent of the votes, beating Raila Odinga who had 48.85 percent. The other candidates George Wajackoyah and David Mwaure obtained 0.44 percent and 0.27 percent respectively.

Cherera pointed out that a summation of the figures came to 100.01 percent, noting that the 0.01 percent equaled 142,000 unaccounted votes

The commissioners also alleged being left out on the periphery in decision-making at the IEBC, accusing the Chair of making the decisions unilaterally.

Following Ruto’s declaration as the winner, however, the IEBC gazetted him as the official president-elect on Tuesday. Unless an election petition is filed within seven days, he will be sworn in on August 30.