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March 30, 2013

Kenya's High Court Affirms President Kenyatta's Election



Kenya's Supreme Court has ruled the country's March 4 election was valid, upholding the election of Uhuru Kenyatta as president.

The high court issued its ruling Saturday, after examining alleged irregularities in the vote-counting process.

Kenya's electoral commission originally said Uhuru Kenyatta won the election outright, with just over 50 percent of the ballots in first-round voting. However, runner-up Raila Odinga contended that vote totals from some polling stations had been altered.

A civil society group said the commission announced Mr. Kenyatta's election before it had finished a complete vote count.

The Supreme Court's ruling that no second-round presidential ballot is necessary will ease many Kenyans' concerns about possible unrest.



Police formed a security zone around the court in Nairobi before Saturday's announcement, to guard against possible violence.

Ethnic violence sparked by a disputed presidential vote in 2007 killed more than 1,100 people and displaced 600,000 others in Kenya.

Mr. Kenyatta still faces charges that he helped organize that violence. Proceedings before the International Criminal Court in Tha Hague have been delayed until later this year.