Kenya - August 2022
The outcome of Kenya’s presidential election to be resolved in court
Kenya held its general elections on 9 August. The winner of the presidential contest was William Ruto, who narrowly beat Raila Odinga by 50.5 per cent to 48.8 per cent. Voter turnout, which was 64.8 per cent, was significantly lower than in the two previous presidential elections. The preliminary findings of international observers praised the elections for being largely peaceful and transparent and stated that electoral processes were generally carried out in accordance with procedure. They did, however, raise several concerns, including the poor informational environment, the misuse of state resources and low registration rates among young Kenyans. Alongside several other petitioners, Odinga has challenged the election result in the Supreme Court, alleging “criminal subversion of the…electoral process” by the Chairperson of Kenya’s election management body, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, which was split over the election result. Judgement is expected in September.
Sources: African Union-Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, European Union, The Commonwealth, East African Community, International IDEA, Public Broadcasting Service, The East African
Record number of women elected as parliamentarians and governors
Kenya’s National Gender and Equality Commission has reported that a historic number of women elected as parliamentarians and governors in the country’s 2022 general election. The number of women parliamentarians representing single-member constituencies increased from 23 in 2017 to 30 (of a total of 290), and women candidates won 7 out of the 47 gubernatorial races, substantially increasing the number of women governors from 3 in 2017. Of the 47 Senate races, 3 were won by women – the same figure as 2017. This increased female representation, however, still fails to meet the constitutionally enshrined requirement that two-thirds gender rule that no one gender should occupy more than two-thirds of appointive and elective bodies. According to the Kenya Women Parliamentary Association, dozens of female candidates were subject to physical abuse during campaigning. They were also subject to other forms of harassment and intimidation intended to intimidate them out of running for election.
Sources: Kenya Broadcasting Corporation, National Gender and Equality Commission, Al Jazeera, Cable News Network