Sunday 28 December 2014

Tensions high over Kenya poll

Mike Pflanz Nairobi

Published 09/03/2013 | 05:00

Supporters of Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga chant slogans before the announcement of the presidential election results in Kenya's western town of Kisumu.

THE counting of votes in Kenya's election entered its fifth night last night, with frustrations rising, despite promises of final results before the weekend.

With 252 of the 291 constituencies tallied, Uhuru Kenyatta led his main rival Raila Odinga by 49.9pc to 43.3pc of the vote from Monday's polls.

To win outright on the first round, Mr Kenyatta needs 50pc of ballots cast plus one, a threshold he has crossed only briefly during a fourth full day of counting yesterday. If he misses that target, Kenya must return to the polls.

Kenya's electoral commission had promised provisional results within 48 hours of polls closing, but their expensive new electronic tallying software crashed on Tuesday. Since then, the estimated 11.5 million votes have been collated manually.

In the meantime, businesses across Kenya have been functioning well below full strength as workers stay home for fear of demonstrations.

Some of Mr Odinga's supporters claimed the count was being engineered against their man, raising fears of a repeat of 2007, when Mr Odinga was cheated out of winning by blatant rigging. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

Irish Independent

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