By Dorcas S
The fundamental problems observed during the 2017 presidential elections, as outlined by the Sept. 20th sitting of the Supreme Court, were identical to the fundamental problems observed AND admitted to by Jubilee in the 2013 presidential race between the same candidates Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga.
In 2013, then-president-elect Uhuru Kenyatta’s lawyer Mr. Fred Ngatia offered that “there may have been clerical errors here and there…” even as he quickly followed that concession with the rather flippant “….no mischief can be attributed to these (clerical errors) at all.”
And what were those “clerical errors” Mr. Ngatia was alluding to? A March 28th 2013 article in the Daily Nation titled “Recount reveals vote irregularities” offers a listing of the anomalies that CORD lawyer George Oraro contended could be extrapolated into a compelling case of massive irregularities.
The “clerical errors” and anomalies – not intended mischievously – included the following:
1. Addition to tallied vote numbers i.e. falsification of vote totals – UMK’s,
2. Subtraction from tallied vote numbers i.e. falsification of vote totals – RAO’s,
3. Inability to verify numbers of votes cast even though “official” results show one candidate receiving five-figure vote total,
4. Missing aggregate results from Form 36 (used to tally final vote counts),
5. Multiple Forms 36 from same polling station,
6. Different aggregate results from different Forms 36 from the same polling station,
7. Incomplete Forms 36,
Quantified, the foregoing anomalies translate into the following:
– Number of constituencies identified as having anomalies: 22
– % of anomalous constituencies: 7.6% (22/291)
– Number of anomalous constituencies that voted for Kenyatta: 11
– Number of anomalous constituencies that voted for Odinga: 11
– Number of votes received from anomalous constituencies: 594,985 vs. 339,096 (Kenyatta v. Odinga)
– % of votes from anomalous constituencies: 9.6% vs. 6.1% ((Kenyatta v. Odinga)
Note: Source of data is IEBC (2013) as summarized by Daily Nation – “Recount reveals vote irregularities”.
A back-of-a-napkin analysis of the foregoing numbers point to a systemic failure of the election process during the 2013 Elections. In analyzing 7.6% of the constituencies, we have anomalies affecting 6-10% of the votes cast! Expand this to all 291 constituencies and we have an (election) outcome that is a prime example of what constitutes a “systemic failure” and confirms CORD’s basic contention of a massive breakdown of Kenya’s electioneering process/system during the 2013 Elections “necessitating negation or questioning of the final results.”
And before I get the moral relativity crowd fired up, two wrongs do not make a right!
So the foregoing aside, somehow, then-CJ Willy Mutunga and the 2013 SCOK incredulously believed Mr. Ngatia’s contention that his clients – Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto – who were, at the time, both facing criminal charges at The Hague, intended “no mischief vis-à-vis the ‘clerical errors’…..”; that all Kenyans (and SCOK) should believe them – which they did.
Fast-forward 3 years later to January 2016 after Kenya’s premier court had extended the benefit of the doubt to the two former CAHs suspects and Kenyans come to find out from Wilson Kiplagat, a journalist with one of the local dailies, that one of the SCOK judges Justice Philip Tunoi had received a $2 million (KSh.200mn) bribe to rule in favor of Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero. (BBC – Kenya judge Phillip Tunoi probed over $2m bribe).
Mr. Kiplagat’s claim was partially corroborated when Kidero’s challenger and now Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu claimed that “he had fresh evidence indicating that Tunoi (had) received Sh200 million to declare Kidero as the governor.” (Standard, January 2016 – I have fresh evidence indicating that Tunoi received Sh200m, says MP Waititu)
And before the dust had settled, a Feb 1, 2016 piece in The Star newspaper titled “Ahmednasir claims Supreme Court judges shared Sh300m” wrote that “more judges of the highest court in the land may have benefitted from the alleged bribe.” Senior State Counsel Mr. Ahmednasir Abdullahi tweeted that the bribe amount (received by the SCOK justices) was not $2 million but “about $3 million”: The lawyer explained that the additional amount was “for four judges, whereby two were paid separately.”
(NOTE: The Supreme Court of Kenya is comprised of five (5) justices, one (1) deputy Chief Justice and one (1) Chief Justice) – so four of the seven justices were compromised!
Separately, that a senior state counsel had evidence of a serious illegality taking place in Kenya’s court of last resort BUT chose not to alert the authorities let alone the media is a story for another day. It also underscores the rot that is Kenya and all her institutions.
All told, a “clerical error” here, a “typing error” there, a “computer glitch” here, a “rounding error” there and soon Jubilee had an 833,000-voter advantage over CORD and Uhuru Kenyatta was being announced as Kenya’s 4th President with William Ruto as his deputy.
That is what happened in 2013.
It is also what happened on August 8, 2017 given the evidence painfully and laboriously monotoned by CJ David Maraga’s SCOK only that this time, Jubilee got caught!
So what changed between 2013 and 2017?