IEBC to announce repeat poll winner today
The electoral commission will on Monday announce results of the October 26 fresh presidential election and also state whether it will hold the poll in 25 constituencies where it was postponed.
IEBC vice-chairperson Consolata Nkatha on Sunday evening said the commission had received results from six of the remaining seven constituencies and that by Monday morning all the results will be in.
“We have received results from six constituencies now and we will be in a position to announce the final results tomorrow morning. We will work throughout the night to ensure that verification and tallying of the received results is completed. We will also make an announcement on whether we will conduct elections in the 25 constituencies where election was postponed or not,” Ms Nkatha said yesterday.
The counties where the commission postponed the repeat election are Nyanza, Kisumu, Migori, Siaya and Homa Bay .
IEBC’s communication has been sporadic but it is understood that the commissioners spent hours in a meeting with its lawyers yesterday as it considers whether to try and hold the election in the 25 constituencies.
Sunday evening, Mr Chebukati said the commission had verified results from 259 of the 265 constituencies, plus the diaspora, where the election was held.
From those, he said, 7,447,014 people voted, representing a turn-out of 43.04 per cent. From the results on the screens at Bomas Sunday night, with 256 constituencies confirmed, President Kenyatta had 7,393,405 votes, representing 98.3 per cent of the valid votes cast.
All the other candidates had below 100,000 votes with opposition leader Raila Odinga, who withdrew from the election, at 70,425 votes.
All the results from the places where voting happened are expected to be in Nairobi Monday and the commission will then declare President Kenyatta the winner. This will also depend on whether the commission deems it possible to hold elections in the 25 constituencies.
“I want to assure you that what we are doing here, as chairman and commissioners, we are satisfied that the process is being done properly, in a free and fair environment. I expressed my concerns on the process, I had my questions and most the concerns I expressed were answered,” he said.
He added: “As chairman, I can confidently stand here and tell you that the process that we are now carrying on is above board. Except for the areas which did not vote, I can confidently say that I am satisfied with this process and the will of people who voted will be realised in these ballots which we are counting here.”
The commission initially wanted to hold the election in counties that did not participate on Saturday but was told not to do so by the National Super Alliance and religious leaders.
The Elections Act provides for the IEBC to declare the winner of an election if it is of the opinion that the results missing would not make much of a difference.
It states, in Section 55B (3): “Notwithstanding the provisions of this section, the commission may, if satisfied that the result of the elections will not be affected by voting in the area in respect of which substituted dates have been appointed, direct that a return of the elections be made.”
If the IEBC declares the winner without the election having taken place in all 290 constituencies as required in the Constitution, there would be a legal question to grapple with.
An IEBC official who briefed former South African president Thabo Mbeki, who is heading the observer team from the African Union, said there had been results from nine polling stations in Kisumu West.
The returning officers from the constituencies in Turkana were understood to be held up by bad weather.
On the floor of the auditorium at Bomas, the former president of South Africa was reluctant to discuss the findings of the team he led and to react to questions on the events in the Nyanza region.
He said the AU team had sent its observers to 18 counties and described the verification he witnessed at Bomas as “very detailed” and “very thorough”.
“You know what observers do. We watched as people voted, we watched as the polling stations opened and we watched as people voted and went to very many,”
Mr Mbeki said he had gone to stations in parts of Nairobi and Kiambu and witnessed vote-counting and then at tallying centres where the results were put together.
“We have come here now and we were able to compare what we saw being sent at the constituency tallying centres to what was received at the Bomas of Kenya and to see what has been going on,” he added.
Mr Mbeki was taken through the process the staff on the floor of the auditorium have been undertaking in the verification.
He looked bemused when told that the officers had been verifying each form from the polling stations and then comparing that with the results filled in form 34B by the returning officers.
“It’s a lot of work but it is very thorough,” he said.
In one case, the returning officer for Molo constituency was reported to have delivered the photocopy of a Form 34A.
He had left the original form in a photocopying machine and had to make the six-hour return journey to collect it and come back to Nairobi.
The commission’s reliance on the physical forms delivered to Bomas extended to calculating the turnout.
The presiding officers were required to send regular updates to Nairobi on the number of voters using the Kenya Integrated Election Management System (Kiems) kits.
Each was also required to transmit the logs using the device at the end of the voting, which would give the IEBC a real-time picture of the number of people who voted at each polling station.
Last evening, Mr Chebukati also sought to explain the apparent contradiction he made on Thursday night, when he posted on his Twitter page suggesting that the commission had earlier overestimated the turnout at 48 per cent.
He said the 48 per cent was taken as the upper limit of a snapshot of logs from the Kiems kit between 4 and 5pm on the day of voting.
As at 5pm on Saturday, he said 36,882 of the 40,883 Kiems kits had sent logs and 7,573,903 voters had been identified using the kits, representing a voter turn-out of 42.8 per cent.