Raila Claims to have Withdrawn from the 26th October Presidential Election

Raila Odinga
Raila Odinga

Raila Odinga claims to have withdrawn from the October 26 presidential race and demanded that IEBC calls a fresh election.

The former Prime Minister said it is only through his withdrawal that the country will have a free and fair election as per the law.

But IEBC told The Star the Opposition leader’s withdrawal had already been overtaken by time as he was to do it within three days of being gazetted.

It also comes a day after President Uhuru Kenyatta dared the ODM leader to quit the race and allow the country to move on.

However, Raila says that in 2013, the Supreme Court expanded the meaning of Article 138(8) (b) to include withdrawal of a presidential candidate.

“The Supreme Court clarified that the relevant article is 138 (8) (b) which deals with cancellation of a presidential election, in the event of the death of the president or the deputy, on or before the scheduled date. The Supreme Court expanded the clause to include when a candidate withdraws from the presidential election,” Raila said.

“The implication of this provision is that upon our withdrawal, the election scheduled for October 26 stands cancelled.”

In contradiction, Raila said his withdrawal requires the commission chaired by Wafula Chebukati to conduct fresh nominations as provided for in Elections Act 2011, Section 13 (1).

The provision states: “A political party shall nominate its candidates for an election under this act at least ninety days before a general election under this Act in accordance with its constitution rules.”

Political strategist and commentator said that the implication of withdrawal, if in deed he has withdrawn leaves President Uhuru and Thirdway Alliance presidential candidate Ekuru Aukot as the potential candidates should the court rule in favour of Aukot in the yet to be determined case.

Further, Raila seems to have made up his mind to pursue extra-constitutional means is his quest for presidency. Such means are dangerous and should be resisted by all Kenyans of goodwill as they are a recipe for chaos.

It is now apparent that Raila and the NASA brigade are not ready for elections and were not intent on a repeat poll going by the fluid irreducible minimum demands and the fact that they have not engaged in any meaningful campaigns since the supreme court ruling opting for street demonstrations to eject IEBC CEO Ezra Chiloba.

It has become apparent for NASA leadership that they cannot win the repeat poll owing to Jubilee dominance in all other elective seats and the fact that they do not have funds to run a meaningful campaign.

IEBC is yet to communicate receipt of Raila’s withdrawal notice.