The Supreme Court on Monday, September 26, released its full judgement upholding the election of William Ruto as Kenya's President elect.
In the judgement, the seven-judge bench led by Chief Justice Martha Koome made five orders after concluding that the Presidential Election was conducted in accordance with the Principles set out in the Constitution and Election Laws.
First, the court dismissed the consolidated Presidential Election Petition including the petition filed by Presidential contender Raila Odinga and his Running mate Martha Karua.
The Apex Court also upheld the declaration of William Ruto as the President-elect as valid under the Constitution.
The Court also declared Regulation 87(3) of the Elections (General) Regulations, 2012 a nullity to the extent it purports to vest the power of verifying and tallying of Presidential Election results, as received at the National Tallying Centre, solely on the Chairperson of the Independent and Electoral Boundaries Commission to the exclusion of other members of the Commission contrary to the Constitution.
All the participants in the petitions were directed to settle their own costs while the Supreme Court directed that the sums which were deposited by the petitioners as security be released to them.
In the detailed judgement, the Apex Court also issued recommendations on governance, elections technology and statutory forms touching on the conduct of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
For corporate governance, the Commission was urged to effect formal internal guidelines that delineates the policy, strategy, and oversight responsibility of the Chairperson and the Commissioners.
"The roles of the Chairperson, Commissioners, and the Chief Executive Officer, other staff and third parties should be clearly set out in both the legislative and administrative edicts as stipulated above," added the ruling.
On technology, IEBC was urged to ensure that access to the servers supporting the transmission and storage of Forms 34A, 34B and 34C be restricted to IEBC staff during the election period.
"IEBC should ensure that the servers supporting the elections and those serving their internal administrative work are distinct and separate. This would then allow the Court, should the need arise, to carry out forensic imaging of the same," added the bench.
On the statutory front, the Commission was urged to consider simplifying and restructuring the Form 34A and include a column that accounts for stray ballots as well as having only one section for total valid votes.
Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga had sued IEBC, its Chairman Wafula Chebukati and President William Ruto claiming that the elections, where Ruto was declared victorious with 50.4 per cent of the vote, were marred with malpractices.
He wanted the bench to declare him the winner instead or order a run-off. The seven-judge bench, however, upheld Ruto's win noting that he had satisfied the Constitutional requirement of 50 per cent plus one vote.