Central Organization of Trade Union (COTU) Secretary General Francis Atwoli has spoken after the Supreme Court of Kenya upheld President-elect William Ruto’s win.
Atwoli was among leaders who campaigned against Ruto ahead of the August 9 General Elections.
One of the COTU boss’ popular mockery of Ruto was that he would take his life after losing the presidential election to Azimio la Umoja flag bearer, Raila Odinga.
However, in an interview moments after Ruto’s win was upheld, Atwoli argued that the statement was just a political statement.
“What I said about Ruto was in the context of competition, and was within my constitutional rights. This is the freedom our people died for,” Atwoli said.
Atwoli also defended himself against remarks that he made indicating that Ruto will never be president, urging Kenyans to give him support that he needs to run the country.
“William Ruto is an articulate politician. I had foreseen him becoming the President of Kenya; I did not say he couldn’t be a president
“I am urging all Kenyans to rally behind him, give him an opportunity to form his government and support him,” said the COTU boss.
Francis Atwoli: William is an articulate politician… I did not say he can’t become the 5th president, I’m urging all Kenyans of goodwill to rally behind and give him an opportunity to form his govt… a winner is a winner and we must accept. #Decision2022 pic.twitter.com/hvAhTul1Om
— NTV Kenya (@ntvkenya) September 5, 2022
Ruto’s win was upheld by the Supreme Court in the ruling delivered by Chief Justice Martha Koome on Monday, September 5.
Koome noted that Ruto met the constitutional threshold of 50 per cent +1 of the total valid votes cast and also garnered 25 per cent of the votes cast in at least 24 counties.
“We declare the election of the first respondent as valid. It is our finding that the declared President-elect attained 50 per cent plus one of the of the votes cast in accordance to the Constitution,” Koome noted.
The Court also addressed a number of issues including claims by the main petitioner, Raila Odinga, that the IEBC system had been infiltrated.
In the petition, Raila claimed that the system was hacked to allow for original forms 34A to be deleted and replaced with doctored forms.
However, the Supreme Court dismissed the same arguing that IEBC deployed technology in accordance with the law.
The Supreme Court also noted that the Forms 34A uploaded to the IEBC portal and those presented to the National Tallying Center were the same.
Also, the Court found that there is no evidence that the postponement of the election in Mombasa, Kakamega, Rongai, and five other areas across the country caused voter suppression.
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