Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta has been re-elected but the opposition coalition says they will "not be a party" to the result, slamming the process as a “charade” and accusing the election commission of ignoring their concerns.
The National Super Alliance (NASA) has alleged massive rigging from shortly after the end of Tuesday’s poll, and had earlier asked the election commission (IEBC) to hold off on announcing results until their concerns could be addressed.
“We raised some very serious concerns [with the commission] and they have not responded to them,” said Musalia Mudavadi, an opposition senior official. “Since our issues have not been addressed, we will not be party to the process they are about to make.”
James Orengo, a campaign manager for Raila Odinga, the main opposition candidate, denounced the counting process as “an entire charade, this is a disaster.”
Kenyatta won 54.3 percent of votes, ahead of his rival Raila Odinga, with 44.7 precent.
International observers, including the former U.S. secretary of state John Kerry and Thabo Mbeki, a former South African president, have given the thumbs-up to the vote and urged any complaints to be channeled through the courts, not street protests.
But Orengo has rejected the calls and some opposition supporters have taken to the streets in the Kibera district of the capital Nairobi as well as in the port city of Kisumu.
"Going to court for us is not an alternative. We've been there before," Orengo says. “Every time an election has been stolen, the Kenyan people have stood up to make sure that changes are made to make Kenya a better place.”
Odinga has lost the last two elections, claiming fraud in both cases. After his 2013 loss, he took allegations of vote-rigging to the Supreme Court, which rejected his case. Odinga also lost the 2007 election, which was followed by violence fueled by ethnic tensions which left more than 1,200 people dead.
Odinga is a member of the Luo, an ethnic group from the west of the country that has long said it is excluded from power. The Kikuyu community, which Kenyatta is from, has supplied three of four presidents since Kenya gained independence from the U.K. in 1963.
Earlier, Orengo had called for the candidates and observers to be given access to the election commission's servers so there could be a transparent audit of data from 41,000 polling stations across the country.
"If they can open those servers, and we all look at it, we are prepared to accept the results of what is contained in those servers," Orengo previously told reporters.
Yakub Guliye, election commissioner in charge of information technology, said the opposition had not made a formal request and it would not act on a verbal request.
Odinga's camp claims that election commission’s servers was hacked and results released by the commission since Tuesday's vote were "fictitious" in favor of President Kenyatta. The commission said a hacking was attempted but did not succeed.
As well as a new president, Kenyans also elected new lawmakers and local representatives. Some of those races have also been disputed, leading to violence in Garissa and Tana River counties.
Police had beefed up security across much of Kenya, particularly in opposition strongholds in the west and parts of Nairobi, after four people were killed in violence on Wednesday.