Declare me president-elect if I won, Raila tells judges

Azimio Raila Odinga Mombasa Abdulswamad Nassir

Azimio leader Raila Odinga during a meeting to drum up support for ODM gubernatorial candidate for Mombasa Abdulswamad Nassir (right) on August 24, 2022. 

Photo credit: Kevin Odit | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • Odinga also demanded that Chebukati recuse himself from Monday’s gubernatorial polls in Kakamega and Mombasa.
  • The Azimio leader said in the event the judges agree with his petition, they should find that the IEBC ought to have recognised him as the president-elect, and not Ruto.
  • Odinga, and his running mate Karua, claim they were robbed of their victory through illegal acts by the Commission.

Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition leader Raila Odinga has asked the Supreme Court to declare him the winner of the August 9 presidential poll should it find he was victorious, instead of ordering a fresh election.

Addressing supporters in Mombasa yesterday, he also demanded that electoral commission chairman Wafula Chebukati recuse himself from Monday’s gubernatorial polls in Kakamega and the Coastal county.

The ODM supremo said in the event the judges agree with his petition, they should find that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) ought to have recognised him as the president-elect, and not Deputy President William Ruto.

Mr Odinga, who has accused Mr Chebukati of bungling the presidential poll, insisted that given the questions surrounding his integrity, the IEBC boss should disqualify himself from overseeing the upcoming elections.

“We want the courts to make that declaration that we won the presidential elections because that is the truth. Instead of going back to the ballot, we should be announced as the winners so that we can be sworn in,” the Azimio leader said as he campaigned for the ODM Mombasa gubernatorial candidate Abdulswamad Nassir.

Mr Odinga, and his running mate Ms Martha Karua, claim they were robbed of their victory through illegal acts by the commission and have questioned the integrity of the presidential poll in which Dr Ruto was declared the winner with 7.1 million votes.

Ms Karua asked their supporters to remain hopeful as they battled in court. 

“We are hopeful the court will rule in our favour because we have substantial evidence. Let’s not be worried or give up. I’m happy you’ve not given up; you are strong, that’s what will give us the gubernatorial seat,” she said.

Mr Odinga said the county elections should be overseen by IEBC Vice-Chair Juliana Cherera, and accused Mr Chebukati of “standing by injustices even as his commissioners deserted him”.

‘They were scared’

The former Prime Minister sided with Ms Cherera and commissioners Justus Nyang’aya, Irene Masit and Francis Wanderi, who have accused Mr Chebukati of failing to provide leadership in the August 9 vote.

“I’ve decided to come here to see you due to the injustices inflicted upon you and Kakamega people. They decided to postpone the polls in the two counties because they were scared. No matter how many times they postpone, we will still win,” Mr Odinga said.

He added: “Can’t you see that I’m not sad or shaken by anything? I know the truth will eventually be known. 

“Ms Karua and I have seen a lot of injustices. We’re dealing with very corrupt opponents who had planned to rig a long time ago. The truth shall set the nation free. Please be patient.”

In a quick rejoinder, IEBC accused Mr Odinga of misleading the country. 

“Gubernatorial elections are run by gazetted returning officers as provided for by the law. For the avoidance of doubt, ROs for Mombasa and Kakamega counties are Ibrahim Swalhah Yusuf and Joseph Ayatta, respectively,” the commission stated.

The two elections remain crucial for Mr Odinga and Dr Ruto as they seek to shore up their support.

The DP garnered 113,700 votes against Mr Odinga’s 161,015 in Mombasa. Mr Nassir’s main opponent is UDA’s Hassan Omar.

In Kakamega, Mr Fernandez Barasa will fly the ODM flag while UDA has fronted outgoing Senator Cleophas Malala. Dr Ruto garnered 141,166 votes against Mr Odinga’s 357,857 in the county.

‘Don’t give up’

The ODM leadership in the devolved unit, led by outgoing Governor Wycliffe Oparanya, is bullish that they will retain the seat despite Kenya Kwanza’s inroads. 

Mr Odinga asked parties affiliated with Azimio to urge their members to come out in large numbers and vote for Mr Nassir. 

“Don’t give up, come out in large numbers and vote for our candidate. This will show Mombasa is an ODM zone and the courts will see” he said.

Mr Nassir said he’s confident of a win, citing the party’s performance in the parliamentary races where it won five out of six. 

“With over 24 out of 30 MCAs coming from ODM and five of six MPs, do they think they have any chance? Mombasa is an ODM zone,” he declared.

Buoyed by Dr Ruto’s performance in the presidential election, UDA is banking on former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko to lead the campaigns for Mr Omar.

“Freedom is coming to Mombasa and it will only be possible with your votes. It’s my prayer you vote for real change. Vote for me and my deputy Selina Maitha to propel this city to even greater heights,” Mr Omar said.

Mr Sonko said Mr Omar had the interests of Mombasa residents at heart.

The former Nairobi governor accused the outgoing administration of failing to address issues that matter to them.

Download a copy of Raila's Supreme Court petitionRaila Odinga petition download