Raila’s votes were deducted and added to Ruto’s, lawyer argues
The votes of Azimio-One Kenya presidential candidate Raila Odinga in 41 polling stations were deducted and added to those of President-elect William Ruto’s, the Supreme Court heard yesterday.
One of Raila’s lawyer, Julie Soweto, said there was a systematic deduction of votes cast for her client in some constituencies, and the same number given to Ruto. She spoke even as the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) confirmed last night that it had granted Raila’s agents access to its servers as ordered by the court.
The commission tweeted: “Following the Supreme Court order, IEBC has granted access to the parties to access the servers, and the scrutiny exercise is ongoing”.
Soweto said there were inconsistencies in the results entered in forms 34As, 34Bs and 34C. “It is in the forms that votes have been reduced from Raila and added to Ruto. We have calculated the total number of voters reduced; they add up to 2,790 votes ... The figures are important because of the slim margin that Ruto was declared the winner of the poll,” Soweto stated.
She told the court that there were discrepancies in votes cast for the president, governor, senator, woman rep, MP and MCA in various stations.
She cited Kirinyaga County where votes cast for governor and president had a difference of 23,550 in favour of the latter. “In 41 forms from the stations, forms 34A received by petitioners’ agents versus forms 34A uploaded in the portal and those brought to the tallying centre, are different. Sampled forms were from Bomet, Kiambu and Kakamega counties,” she said.
The IEBC had, in its replying affidavit, said stray votes, violence and postponed elections in eight areas resulted in higher votes cast for president than for the other seats.
Soweto also argued that the commission deliberately cancelled gubernatorial elections in Kakamega and Mombasa — Raila’s perceived strongholds — to occasion low voter turnout in those areas.
Senior Counsel Philip Murgor, also representing Raila, told the court that the IT technology was inherently corrupted, manipulated, and tainted. He said several foreigners accessed the IEBC systems as super administrators with powers to change, delete, modify and other privileges.
“The election was controlled from everywhere except at the IEBC. There was malicious existence of commission staff not officially gazetted. There was remote access by a stranger. We have evidence of downloading of forms, changing figures, converting them, then uploading them again”, he said.
“A group of about 50 people in Karen, Nairobi county, had access to the commission’s ICT system”, added Murgor. “They were intercepting results before they were uploaded to the portal. The IEBC system was infiltrated, while unknown people further gained unlawful access after they were granted credentials for the manipulation of the results.”