Kenya’s Supreme Court Upholds President-elect’s Victory after Call for Calm, Prayers

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Kenya’s Supreme Court has, on Monday, September 5, delivered a verdict upholding the victory of Deputy President, Dr. William Ruto, who was declared winner of the country’s closely contested August 9 presidential election.

Delivering the judgment on behalf of the seven-member court, Chief Justice (CJ) Martha Koome, the chair of the Kenyan Supreme Court, also dismissed the set of petitions that had been tabled by aggrieved parties for the court’s determination.

“The Consolidated Presidential Election Petition is hereby dismissed, and the election of William Samoei Ruto as President-elect upheld unanimously,” CJ Koome said.

She added, “This being a public interest matter, we order that each party shall bear their costs.”

The Kenyan top court of justice delivered the verdict after a fervent call for prayers and calm from the country’s religious leaders as well as the judges themselves.


Prior to the September 5 ruling, CJ Koome and her deputy, Philomena Mwilu, asked Kenyans to pray for the Supreme Court judges as they withdrew to write their judgment. 

In her address on September 2 on the last day of the court hearing, the Kenyan CJ appealed for prayers for the seven Supreme Court judges “so that we can render judgment that promotes our Constitution that is anchored in the law that nurtures our democracy, brings our money to our country and everything good that is stated in our Constitution.”

On her part, DCJ Philomena Mwilu asked Kenyans to pray as the seven-member team deliberates on the hearing. She said while the deliberation and delivery of the verdict is not a difficult phase, “it is intense… and therefore needing prayer.” 

“We ask you that you pray to whatever God you pray to that that God will assist us to continue in the spirit we've been in for the last one year and that we shall have a very high sense of discernment and that we shall return to Kenya a judgment not less than what Kenya expects,” said Kenya’s DCJ.

Following the August 15 declaration of Ruto’s victory by the chairman on Kenya’s Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), Wafula Chebukati, a total of nine Presidential Election Petitions were filed in the Supreme Court, two of which were struck out “for failure to meet the constitutional threshold.”

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The main challenger in the Presidential petition was Kenya’s former Prime Minister, Raila Amolo Odinga, who had unsuccessfully vied for the country’s top political seat for the fifth time.

Top on the list of the petitions that were tabled, Raila’s party, the Azimio la Umoja, wanted the Supreme Court Judges to investigate whether the technology deployed by the IEBC for the conduct of the 2022 general elections met the standards of integrity, verifiability, security, and transparency to guarantee accurate and verifiable results.

On the election technology, CJ Koome said that the court was not persuaded that the technology deployed by IEBC failed on integrity, verifiability, security and transparency. 

The aggrieved Azimio la Umoja team also appealed to the court to establish whether there were irregularities and illegalities of such magnitude as to affect the final result of the Presidential Election, to which the court found that the illegalities and irregularities pointed out by the petitioners were not of such magnitude as to affect the final result of the Presidential election.

Meanwhile, the Catholic Church in Kenya has maintained a leadership role in sensitizing the masses on the need to remain calm amid the just ended process.


In their September 3 statement, members of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) called upon Kenyans to “dutifully” and “peacefully” follow the ruling of the Supreme Court.

“The Supreme Court ruling will give us direction on the way to proceed as a country. We should all dutifully follow the decision of the court, peacefully,” KCCB members said in the statement that was delivered by their President, Archbishop Martin Kivuva Musonde.

The Archbishop of Mombasa added, “We remind all our leaders and all Kenyans that the Justice of the courts is not to be equated with the justice of God. God’s judgement knows the depths of the hearts and the intentions.”

The Catholic Bishops underlined the need for Kenyans to be on God’s side even after the presidential verdict, saying that it is not “a matter of political or individual preferences.”

In his Sunday, September 4 message, Archbishop Anthony Muheria urged Kenyans to maintain calmness after the Supreme Court delivers the verdict of the Presidential election.

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Archbishop Muheria who was speaking at Our Lady of Consolata Catholic Church of his Metropolitan See of Nyeri also cautioned political leaders against utterances that could cause violence.

“We cannot set our country on fire because of the interest of one person… and that is why I call on all political leaders to be careful with their utterances that threaten peace should the outcome not favor them,” Archbishop Muheria said.

He added, “Whatever you are looking for is right and just but do not involve us in violence or verbal exchanges that will alter the peace of the country or how we live with one another.”

In an August 29 message, religious leaders urged Kenyans to accept the verdict of the Supreme Court on the presidential poll.

The religious leaders representing KCCB, the National Council of Churches (NCCK), the Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims (SUPKEM), and Hindu Council of Kenya (HCK) also urged Kenyans to accept the verdict as a win for Kenya.

“We urge every Kenyan, regardless of their political affiliation, to accept the ruling of the Supreme Court as the position of justice,” the religious leaders said, and added, “It is Kenya that will have won either way.”

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