William Ruto wins Kenya elections

William Ruto

The incumbent Deputy President of Kenya, William Ruto has won the country’s tightly fought presidential elections.

Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) declared Ruto winner Monday August 15, 2022.

In his remarks after the announcement, Ruto said: “There are no losers. The people of Kenya have won because we raised the political bar.”

Ruto won against opposition leader Raila Odinga, with a narrow margin. He won a little more than seven million votes and Odinga got a little less than seven million, the IEBC announced.

A member of the youth wing of Arap Moi’s KANU party, Ruto, 55 years old, joined politics in 1992. He was elected to parliament at his first attempt in 1997 as MP for the Eldoret North constituency.

Ruto served in various ministerial positions – including education, and later rose to become the Deputy President after the 2013 election.

Before joining outgoing President Uhuru Kenyatta as the running mate, he had been on the opposite side of the political divide in the previous election.

The two formed an alliance of convenience, as they both had been charged by the International Criminal Court (ICC) with crimes against humanity when they were accused of fuelling violence in the aftermath of the heavily disputed 2007 election, in which about 1,200 people were killed. Ruto had backed opposition candidate Raila Odinga in that disputed election.

The Ruto, Kenyatta alliance broke in 2018, when the latter reconciled with Mr Odinga. That decision didn’t go down well with Ruto as he feared that he wouldn’t receive the outgoing president’s endorsement as his successor in this year’s election.

The President-elect is married to Rachael, and they have six children.

By Emmanuel K Dogbevi

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