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LIVE TV: Follow the US election results here as votes stream in

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The outcome of the US presidential election is on a knife edge, with Donald Trump and his rival Joe Biden neck and neck in key swing states.

Mr Biden’s campaign said the race was “moving to a conclusion in our favour”.

But Mr Trump, a Republican, claimed to have won and vowed to launch a Supreme Court challenge, without providing evidence of fraud.

Millions of votes remain uncounted and no candidate can credibly claim victory as yet.

The US is on course for the highest electoral turnout in a century. More than 100 million people cast their ballots in early voting before election day, and tens of millions more added their vote on Tuesday.

With the nation on edge, the final result may not be known for days.

What are the results so far?

Mr Trump has defied the pre-election polls to do better than predicted, but Mr Biden has a narrow lead in several key states.

In the US election, voters decide state-level contests rather than an overall, single, national one.

To be elected president, a candidate must win at least 270 votes in what is called the electoral college. Each US state gets a certain number of votes partly based on its population and there are a total of 538 up for grabs.


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Former Belgut MP Kiptarus Kirior dies

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Former assistant minister for Culture and Social Services Kiptarus Kirior has died.

The former Belgut Member of Parliament died while undergoing treatment at the Nairobi Women’s Hospital on Thursday.

“Mzee passed on at Nairobi Women’s Hospital after a short illness. He had blood pressure and was also diabetic,” said Mr Abraham Kirior, one of the former MP’s sons.

He added, “For the record, he was Covid-19 free according to tests undertaken and released to us at the hospital,”

He served as Belgut MP between 1983 and 1988 before he was beaten by the late Ayub Chepkwony. He, however, made a comeback to the National Assembly between 1992 and 1997.

“Kirior was an astute leader, who had the interest of his constituents at heart as demonstrated by his development track record which spans decades,” said Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony

Professor Chepkwony said “besides his legislative roles, Kirior was a great farmer who agitated for various reforms in the sugar industry, earning him leadership position in the Kenya Sugar Board and the Kenya Sugar Growers Association,”

Belgut MP Nelson Koech said Kericho residents had lost “a dedicated, down to earth leader who put the interests of the people he led ahead of his own,”

“It is unfortunate that Mzee Kirior has departed at a time when his wisdom was needed the most by members of his family and the society in general,” said Mr Koech in a statement.

By Nation.africa


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Ruto: I helped Uhuru pick the BBI team but its mandate was changed to include changing the constitution without my knowledge

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Deputy President William Ruto has said that the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) committee was not meant to change the Constitution.

While acknowledging that he had a hand in nominating the team members led by Senator Yusuf Haji, he said that the mandate of the team soon changed.

“When we were nominating those people, changing the Constitution was not part of their brief. That’s why if you look at the nominations that came from the Jubilee side, we were nominating people whose brief was to bring people together. Generally peace briefings. That’s why we nominated the chairman of the Kisii elders, the Kalenjin Council of Elders, Maison Leshomo (Samburu Woman Rep),” he said in an interview that aired on Citizen TV on Thursday evening.

“Be that as it may, when this exercise was concretised into a Constitution (issue), it was necessary for us to step in and say okay, let’s look at what proposals are being made. Some of the interventions that we have made are not unreasonable,” he added.

“I know there is a lot of push…that the train has left the station. But it is never too late to do the right thing,” DP Ruto said.

He also insisted that there is no legal framework within which the push to amend the Constitution is being made.

The Deputy President also reiterated his preference for a multiple choice referendum, noting that it would give Kenyans the latitude to make decisions on an article by article basis.

“It (multiple choice) is the best way to fashion our referendum. Parliament is already fashioning a referendum Bill that gives the possibility of us going to a referendum with options. It is not something far-fetched,” the DP said.

The DP said that he does not need to get all he has demanded in the constitutional referendum debate, even as he insisted that the issues he was raising were reasonable.

He said the TangaTanga group he leads is not being belligerent in demanding fresh changes to the BBI Bill, whose proponents have already collected over four million signatures in one week.

“We do not have to get everything we want,” the DP said in a live interview with Citizen TV.

The DP’s group has demanded a multiple-choice referendum held alongside the General Election, the provision to vary by 20 per cent the proposed 70 constituencies as well as the amendment of the provision for the proposed Judiciary Ombudsman to be nominated by the President and vetted by the Senate, saying the office holder should instead be named by the Judiciary.

“I have nothing to gain or lose in this referendum. My only stake is that if we are changing the Constitution, we are changing it to go forward, not backwards. Two, is to make sure that we do not divide Kenyans,” the DP said.

Referendum

He added: “If what we are saying is of merit, we can republish this Bill before signatures to IEBC. We can have Parliament to have a Bill to give Kenyans the chance to vote on multiple choices and not pushing them to a corner.”

He insisted that the option of a multiple-choice format referendum was Kenya’s best chance to not have a situation of throwing away the baby with the bathwater in the BBI

“We believe it is possible to have a referendum where Kenyans vote on articles independently. As leaders, we have to change of how we view Kenyans. Their views, concerns, ideas, proposals also matter,” the DP said, defending his call for Kenyans to vote for the different issues separately.

“There is a tendency to underestimate the ability of the common Kenyan to comprehend issues and make a decision. If you have six issues and you are telling them to make a decision, what is the problem?”

He said experts can package the sections of the BBI that go together, suggesting it could be divided on the basis of the changes to the Legislature, the Judiciary, Parliament, Executive, devolution, and the proposed 70 constituencies.

He cited cases he said were happening in Liberia, New Zealand, Switzerland, Peru, and the United States which he cited as those that have done multiple-choice referenda.

“It is not something far-fetched,” he said.

Divisive referendum

“The position I have taken is that a referendum is possible, that we can have a win-win outcome that we do not need have a divisive referendum…As a deputy president, I have a duty to do everything in my power to ensure Kenyans travel together.”

Citing instances of Covid-19 infection and deaths and the economic burdens that come with it, the DP reiterated his position that the referendum be held alongside the 2022 General Election.

“Kenyans are asking themselves are we mad? Why hold a referendum now instead of 2022? We have debts, people are losing jobs, parents do not know where to get [school] fees next year, NHIF is not paying bills….Surely, let us be serious,” he said.

He defended his defence of the Judiciary independence given his comments after the Supreme Court nullified the presidential election in 2017.

“An independent Judiciary is good for me whether I am in government or the opposition,” said Dr Ruto.

He insisted that President Kenyatta shares with him his vision of a united country.

“The President is my boss and my friend. These are things we have shared. I can tell you without fear of contradiction that he shares with me the hope of a united country,” he said.

-Nation


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DP Ruto: Unbeknown to many, I have been advising Uhuru on BBI issues

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In a wide ranging interview with Citizen TV’s Joe Ageyo at the former’s residence in Karen on Thursday night, Kenya’s Deputy President William Ruto disclosed that he, infact, advises President Uhuru Kenyatta on Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) matters.

DP Ruto said: “As his principal assistant, yes I advise him. This is a constitution-making process. The constitution is about every Kenyan, myself included. If it is being amended, I do not have the luxury to stand aside and do nothing about it…I do not want history to judge me for not stepping out to speak out.”

He added: “Consensus for us is on content, process and timing. We have almost concluded consensus on content. We agree with the 70 additional constituencies but have IEBC delimit the areas…We are not saying our proposals must pass, we are saying that our proposals are reasonable.” Watch:


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