United Nations reject Raila’s request for a review of August 8 election results

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The United Nations has rejected Opposition leader Raila Odinga’s request for a UN review of the August 8 election results, according to the body’s spokesman Farhan Haq.

Mr Faraq instead referred to a statement made by Secretary-General Antonio Guterres asking parties with grievances in the last concluded elections take their disputes before “the relevant constitutionally mandated institutions.”

Mr Odinga had proposed that the UN carry out an analysis of the polls during an interview last week with the Financial Times based in London.

The UN seems unlikely to carry out the election analysis but Mr Faraq said the body wil monitor Mr Odinga’s expected remarks which were expected on Tuesday but have since been cancelled.

The developments occurred as a major paper in the US The Washington Post hailed the elections as free and fair.

“If local and international observers are right, Kenya has just staged one of the fairest and most transparent elections in its history, as well as in the recent history of Africa,” the Post’s editorial read.

The country has nevertheless “been teetering on the brink of crisis largely because Mr Kenyatta’s opponent, Raila Odinga, refuses to accept the results or even the established legal process for challenging them,” the editorial added.

“Instead, Mr Odinga has been leveling charges of fraud without offering any evidence to support them and encouraging his supporters to take to the streets.”

Though the paper criticised the opposition’s response to the results, it  also urged President Kenyatta to “stop the excesses of the police as well as the apparent pressure being applied to media and non-governmental organisations.”

“Mr Kenyatta appears to have fairly won a democratic mandate,” The Post declared, warning, however, that “he should not tarnish it with repression.”

Efforts to ensure peace within Kenya and to enhance “its status as an emerging democracy and attraction for foreign investors, will require the government and opposition to act responsibly and with restraint in the coming days,” the Post said.

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