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Why Raila won’t attend Ruto’s swearing-in ceremony

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By Judith Gicobi

Raila Odinga, the head of the Azimio La Umoja coalition party, will miss Tuesday’s swearing-in ceremony of President-elect William Ruto.

In a statement released on Monday, Odinga acknowledged that Ruto had personally invited him to the inauguration ceremony, but added that he would not accept the invitation because he is currently abroad and continues to have “serious concerns” about the elections of August 9th, in which Ruto was declared the victor.

“This evening, I received a letter and a telephone call from H.E Dr. William Ruto inviting me to his inauguration set for tomorrow, September 13, 2022. I regret however that I will not be available for the inauguration because I am out of the country and I also have other serious concerns,” reads the statement.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), according to Odinga, did not conduct a free and fair election.

Odinga continued in the statement that he thought the Supreme Court’s decision to affirm Ruto’s victory “was not based on the facts and the law, even though we accepted it.”

“For these reasons, the outcome of the election remains indeterminate,” said Odinga, who finished second in the polls.

The former prime minister continued by saying that he would reveal his plans after arriving home.

“Once I return to the country, I will, jointly with Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition Party leaders, announce our next steps as we seek to deepen and strengthen our democracy,” he said.

“We can only do so if we reform and transform the key institutions that are charged with protecting and advancing our democracy.”

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