News / Africa

Kenyan Reaction to Kenyatta Victory Decidedly Mixed

Jill Craig
Kenyan election officials have finished their week-long counting of ballots and named Uhuru Kenyatta the fourth president of Kenya. But, predictably, given the violence after the 2007 election, reactions from Kenyans are mixed.

Kenya's Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission says Uhuru Kenyatta secured a slim majority - 50.07 percent of the vote. That eliminated the need for a runoff against his main rival, Raila Odinga, who plans to appeal, claiming election fraud.
The mood around the country varies, but most people are urging acceptance of the results and for peace to prevail.
In the town of Dagoretti, a Kenyatta stronghold, people like Ann Benika are pleased with the outcome.
“The election was fair and good, because there was no fight. There was no tension,” says she.
Both Kenyatta and Odinga supporters live in the Nairobi slum of Mathare, an area heavily impacted by the 2007 and 2008 post-election violence.
Resident Hesbon Osiga says that he is willing to accept Kenyatta, as long as the new president lives up to his promises.
“So we expect the [winning] side, Uhuru Kenyatta, and his deputy president, they should stick to their manifesto. These young people, who are with me, they are unemployed. They have got so many challenges. Our prayer is that they deliver as per their manifesto.”
However, Joshua Deya says that he agrees with Odinga’s decision to contest the elections results.

“We are not going to take the law into our hands, as in 2007. But now we have another [option]. If you are not satisfied here, then we’ll go to court.”

The reaction in Odinga’s home base of Kisumu to the Kenyatta victory was more extreme, with some calls for secession, as voiced by Odinga supporter David Omondi.
“If the others who voted for that other candidate, cannot come together with the rest of the country, then we are ready to have our own republic.”

Back in Mathare, residents were quick to say that they will continue being friends after the elections are over.
And some, like John Gatiba, say they are focusing on Kenya’s future.
“Please guys: Maintain the peace. Go back to work. And let’s move the country forward. And the elections are just a short-time moment, but we have a lot to do for this country and that is what matters at the end of the day.”
Voter turnout was 86 percent in this election, with more than 12 million votes cast.

Kisumu footage for the video report was provided by Amos Waganga

You May Like

Afghanistan, Pakistan Leaders to Hold Icebreaking Talks in Paris

Two sides are expected to discuss ways to ease bilateral tensions and jointly work for resumption of stalled peace talks between Afghan government and Taliban officials

Corruption Busting Is Her Game

South African activist is building 'international online community of thousands of corruption fighters'

Former SAF Businessman Gives Books, Love of Reading to Students

Steve Tsakaris now involved in nonprofit Read to Rise, which distributes books in Soweto, encourages lower-grade primary school students to read

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: Kizee Ba Mkubwa from: Kenya
March 11, 2013 6:36 AM
Opiyo`s comment is very irresponsible.Uhuru Kenyatta never stole any money and he stated very categorical during presidential debate that it was an ERROR! on paper.It is very unfair for Opiyo to call over 6,000,000 kenyans ignorant.We know that mr.kenyatta has a date with the icc but everybody is INNOCENT until proven otherwise.

by: Opiyo from: Winnipeg, Canada
March 10, 2013 3:39 PM
Kenyan election of Uhuru shows just how long it will take to wipe corruption and to make leaders accoutable. Uhuru's track record is very disturbing noting that when he was finance minister he 9 billion shillings (USD $102M) went missing and this is the amount he bribed his way back to being president. Uhuru has a case with ICC which should bare him illegible to run for any office yet despite these there is a bunch of ignorant Kenyans who have decided to vote him in. There is a very dark cloud hovering over Kenya.
In Response

by: chephochok from: Kenya
March 11, 2013 7:49 AM
In response to Opiyo's comment,i totally dispute the allegation level against Mr. Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta.Before the president elect vied for the presidential position,he was thoroughly vetted by the Ethics and Anti-corruption commission of Kenya (EACC).This was a mandatory procedure for all the candidates vying for various positions.The president elect was issued with a clearance certificate to show that he was not implicated in any form of financial corruption, save only from the glaring icc issue.

Moreover,the icc case has not been proven beyond reasonable doubts to convict the president.I wish to remind mr.Opiyo that the allegation against the president is wrong and intended to whip the emotions of innocent Kenyans into rioting,like what we experienced in 2007.Perhaps you do not care since you live with your family in abroad.Therefore in case of any break out of clashes you will not suffer at all.It is very bitter to abuse over six million kenyans a ''bunch of ignorant'',who voted for Uhuru Kenyatta.Who could be ignorant,a bunch of six million Kenyans on Mr.Opiyo who resides in offshore country?On behalf of other kenyans we have accepted the results as they are and we require whoever is in power to build the kenyan economy so that we move forward.

By the Numbers

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continuesi
Ayesha Tanzeem
November 25, 2015 10:46 PM
One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video Belgium-Germany Border Remains Porous, Even As Manhunt For Paris Attacker Continues

One of the suspected gunmen in the Nov. 13 Paris attacks, Salah Abdeslam, evaded law enforcement, made his way to Belgium, and is now believed to have fled to Germany. VOA correspondent Ayesha Tanzeem makes the journey across the border from Belgium into Germany to see how porous the borders really are.

Video Islamic State Unfazed by Losses in Iraq, Syria

Progress in the U.S.-led effort to beat Islamic State on its home turf in Iraq and Syria has led some to speculate the terror group may be growing desperate. But counterterror officials say that is not the case, and warn the recent spate of terror attacks is merely part of the group’s evolution. VOA National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more.

Video Taiwan Looks for Role in South China Sea Dispute

The Taiwanese government is one of several that claims territory in the hotly contested South China Sea, but Taipei has long been sidelined in the dispute, overshadowed by China. Now, as the Philippines challenges Beijing’s claims in an international court at The Hague, Taipei is looking to publicly assert its claims. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.

Video Syrian Refugees in US Express Concern for Those Left Behind

Syrian immigrants in the United States are concerned about the negative tide of public opinion and the politicians who want to block a U.S. plan to accept 10,000 Syrian refugees. Zlatica Hoke reports many Americans are fighting to dispel suspicions linking refugees to terrorists.

Video After Paris Attacks, France Steps Up Fight Against IS

The November 13 Paris attacks have drawn increased attention to Syria, where many of the suspected perpetrators are said to have received training. French President Francois Hollande is working to build a broad international coalition to defeat Islamic State in Syria and in Iraq. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video US, Cambodian Navies Pair Up in Gulf of Thailand

The U.S. Navy has deployed one of its newest and most advanced ships to Cambodia to conduct joint training drills in the Gulf of Thailand. Riding hull-to-hull with Cambodian ships, the seamen of the USS Fort Worth are executing joint-training drills that will help build relations in Southeast Asia. David Boyle reports for VOA from Preah Sihanouk province.

Video Americans Sharpen Focus on Terrorism

Washington will be quieter than usual this week due to the Thanksgiving holiday, even as Americans across the nation register heightened concerns over possible terrorist threats. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports new polling data from ABC News and the Washington Post newspaper show an electorate increasingly focused on security issues after the deadly Islamic State attacks in Paris.

Video World Leaders Head to Paris for Climate Deal

Heads of state from nearly 80 countries are heading to Paris (November 30-December 11) to craft a global climate change agreement. The new accord will replace the Kyoto Protocol on Climate Change that expired in 2012.

Video Uncertain Future for Syrian Refugee Resettlement in Illinois

For the trickle of Syrian refugees finding new homes in the Midwest city of Chicago, the call to end resettlement in many U.S. states is adding another dimension to their long journey fleeing war. Organizations working to help them integrate say the backlash since the Paris attacks is both harming and helping their efforts to provide refugees sanctuary. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.

Video Creating Physical Virtual Reality With Tiny Drones

As many computer gamers know, virtual reality is a three-dimensional picture, projected inside special googles. It can fool your brain into thinking the computer world is the real world. But If you try to touch it, it’s not there. Now Canadian researchers say it may be possible to create a physical virtual reality using tiny drones. VOA’s George Putic reports.

Video New American Indian Village Takes Visitors Back in Time

There is precious little opportunity to experience what life was like in the United States before its colonization by European settlers. Now, an American Indian village built in a park outside Washington is taking visitors back in time to experience the way of life of America's indigenous people. Carol Pearson narrates this report from VOA's June Soh.

Video Even With Hometown Liberated, Yazidi Refugees Fear Return

While the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar has been liberated from Islamic State forces, it's not clear whether Yazidi residents who fled the militants will now return home. VOA’s Mahmut Bozarslan talked with Yazidis, a religious and ethnic minority, at a Turkish refugee camp in Diyarbakır. Robert Raffaele narrates his report.

Video Nairobi Tailors Make Pope Francis’ Vestments

To ensure the pope is properly attired during his visit, the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops asked the Dolly Craft Sewing Project in the Nairobi slum of Kangemi to make the pope's vestments, the garments he will wear during the various ceremonies. Jill Craig reports.

Video Cross-Border Terrorism Puts Europe’s Passport-Free Travel in Doubt

The fallout from the Islamic State terror attacks in Paris has put the future of Europe’s passport-free travel area, known as the "Schengen Zone," in doubt. Several of the perpetrators were known to intelligence agencies, but were not intercepted. Henry Ridgwell reports from London European ministers are to hold an emergency meeting Friday in Brussels to look at ways of improving security.

Video El Niño Brings Unexpected Fish From Mexico to California

Fish in an unexpected spectrum of sizes, shapes and colors are moving north, through El Niño's warm currents from Mexican waters to the Pacific Ocean off California’s coast. El Nino is the periodic warming of the eastern and central Pacific Ocean. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this phenomenon thrills scientists and gives anglers the chance of a once-in-a-lifetime big catch. Faith Lapidus narrates.

Video Terrorism in Many Forms Continues to Plague Africa

While the world's attention is on Paris in the wake of Friday night's deadly attacks, terrorism from various sides remains a looming threat in many African countries. Nigerian cities have been targeted this week by attacks many believe were staged by the violent Islamist group Boko Haram. In addition, residents in many regions are forced to flee their homes as they are terrorized by armed militias. Zlatica Hoke reports.

Video Study: Underage Marriage Rate Higher for Females in Pakistan

While attitudes about the societal role of females in Pakistan are evolving, research by child advocacy group Plan International suggests that underage marriage of girls remains a particularly big issue in the country. VOA’s Ayesha Tanzeem reports how such marriages leads to further social problems.

VOA Blogs