The outspoken head of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) party in South Africa, Julius Malema, has pleaded with Kenya’s Azimio la Umoja One presidential candidate Raila Odinga to accept the voting results.
The outspoken politician pleaded with Mr. Odinga, who came in second in the poll last week, to accept loss and rein in his supporters.
On Wednesday, Mr. Malema said it was a “sad” that Mr. Odinga had lost five presidential elections during a joint press conference with SA’s opposition parties.
“I think it is time for him to throw in the towel and try a different candidate. Perhaps there could be a different outcome. This is the fifth time, it can’t be done beyond this, he needs to accept and move on,” he said.
He said that Kenyans must accept the results, because “it is what it is”.
“With highly contested elections, and with such a very close outcome, you are likely to have people who are not satisfied. It comes with the nature of the game,” Mr Malema said.
“Kenyans must prioritise and protect Kenya and must protect democracy. They must love their country more than loving individuals.”
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) was praised for how it handled the elections by nine ambassadors and high commissioners from European nations and Canada on Wednesday.
The ambassadors claimed in a statement that Kenya’s electoral process had established a precedent for the African continent.
“Kenya has set an example to the region and continent as a whole. We call upon all actors to uphold the spirit of peace in the coming weeks,” the statement read.
Australia, Canada, Denmark, Germany, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom are all represented by the nine.
They urged political parties and leaders to abide by the Constitution’s guidelines for using the current conflict resolution procedures.
William Ruto was declared the winner on Monday by IEBC chairperson Wafula Chebukati after receiving 7.1 million votes, or around 50.5% of the total number of ballots cast.
Mr. Odinga received 6.9 million votes, or around 48.85 percent, to become second.
However, Mr. Odinga has disapproved of the results and declared that he will look into legal and constitutional options to contest the verdict.
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