- Ademola Oshodi, a global analyst, has hailed the outcome of the Kenyan presidential election
- Kenya's Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) announced William Ruto as the winner of the poll
- Ruto, a 55-year-old who has served as deputy president of the country for 10 years, defeated his closest rival, Raila Odinga, with 54% of the vote
A global analyst, Ademola Oshodi, has described the recently concluded Kenyan presidential election as an improvement on the one held in 2017.
In an exclusive interview with Legit.ng, on Friday, August 19, Oshodi said the election was generally peaceful before and after the poll.
He recalled that the 2017 election in Kenya was marred by violence, annulment by the Supreme Court and a boycott of the rerun by Raila Odinga.
Oshodi also noted that the number of days spent by the country’s electoral body to collate and announce the results of about 14 million ballots appeared to be too long if compared with Nigeria, which has more than double the size of the Kenyan ballots.
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“However, it took seven days to collate and announce an election with about 14 million ballots. Seventy days appeared too long because it takes considerably less time in Nigeria with more than double the size of ballots.
“In addition, four out of the 7 members of the Independent Electoral and Boundary Commission did not endorse the result thereby raising legitimacy issues which may be up for determination in court.”
The analyst stated that the announcement of William Ruto as the winner is also being challenged by the loser, Raila Odinga.
He added that online, real-time availability of election results from polling units enhanced the transparency of the election.
Why social media dominance does not determine electoral success
Oshodi further explained that the Kenyan election's outcome showed that despite social media's importance, it could be misleading to base a candidate's electability on it.
“The outcome of the Kenyan election also shows that as important as social media is, it can be misleading to base candidate's electability on it. A certain Dr. George Wajackoyah of the Roots Party dominated the social media space but won less than 0.5% of the total votes cast.”
Kenya election was a class contest
He added that ethnic consideration did not appear to be a dominant consideration in the election, saying it was more of a class contest with Ruto seen by many as the archetype of the masses who had no political c.um economic dynasty behind him.
“Conversely, Odinga was seen as a representative/beneficiary of the establishment being the son of the independence vice president of Kenya. The fact that the incumbent president, Uhuru Kenyatta threw his weight behind him may have accentuated this perception. Recall that both men's fathers were former president and vice president, respectively.”
Why Kenya must learn from Nigeria’s electoral process
He, however, said that there isn't much for Nigeria to learn from the Kenyan elections, noting that one can even say the Kenyans seem to have learnt from election management in Nigeria with the introduction of electronic transmission of results.
“There isn't much for Nigeria to learn from the Kenyan elections, really. One can even say the Kenyans seem to have learnt from election management in Nigeria with the introduction of electronic transmission of results. Also, Nigeria has never had such situation where there's division among members of INEC.”
The winner of Kenya's presidential election finally emerges
Meanwhile, Legit.ng had previously reported that William Ruto was announced the winner of Kenya’s presidential election by the chairman of the country’s electoral commission.
Vanguard reported that Ruto defeated Raila Odinga in a strongly contested election with 50.4% of the total votes.
The announcement was delayed as there are allegations of riggings from members of Odinga’s camp.