Incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta has won Kenya’s presidential election, which was boycotted by the opposition, with just over 98 percent of the vote, the electoral commission announced Monday.
Turnout for Thursday’s poll was just under 39 percent of the 19.6 million registered voters, said Wafula Chebukati, the head of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).
Opposition leader Raila Odinga, who dropped out of the presidential re-run, had called on his supporters to boycott the vote, and protesters blocked polling stations from opening in some opposition strongholds.
The October vote was a re-run of the August presidential election. Kenyatta was declared the winner of that vote, but the results were thrown out by the Supreme Court because of irregularities in the transmission of results.
“It was Uhuru versus Uhuru,” Odinga told the Associated Press about Thursday’s re-run vote. He also said the president is trying to “destroy other institutions of governance in our country.”
Odinga has accused the United States and other Western diplomats of being “very irresponsible” for urging Thursday’s repeat vote.
Post-election violence has left at least eight people dead in Kenya, including an elderly man possibly murdered in the Koguta region — an area between the Kalenjin community, which supports Kenyatta, and the Luo community, which backs Odinga.
Tension and hatred between the two sides over land rights and politics have simmered for years.
Kalenjin youths armed with bows, arrows and machetes said that Luo residents have been blocking roads as part of a political protest, making their lives difficult. They say they were prevented from getting to a polling place to vote Thursday.
A local Luo leader, Marreen Otiang, says the killing must stop.
“We do not want any Luo dying in the name of insecurity in the name of voting,” Otiang said. “We have a right if they want peace, let them give us peace. Enough is enough. We are tired.”