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Kenya government denies opposition claims it plans to rig polls

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The ruling Jubilee Administration on Thursday denied claims by the opposition that it plans to rig the August 8 elections and take power by force if defeated.In a statement, State House spokesperson Manoah Esipisu described the allegations by opposition leader Raila Odinga as “mischievous, baseless and absolutely laughable”.

On Tuesday, opposition leader Raila Odinga claimed that President Uhuru Kenyatta plots to rig the elections using security personnel.

“As we speak, Uhuru is marshalling all armed forces to deal with challenges which only he knows, at a scale that only exists in dictatorships where the Constitution is overthrown and the President rules by force,” Odinga said.

“We would like to categorically state that the groundless claims that there is a strategy in place to manipulate the elections amounts to an inciteful and reckless conspiracy that jeopardises vital public faith in our institutions and democratic processes,” Esipisu said in the statement issued by the seat of the presidency.

“In his many meet–the–people tours and re–election campaign stops across the country, His Excellency President Uhuru Kenyatta has been, and continues to be on record that he shall accept the will of Kenyan voters on August 8th 2017, whatever that may be,” he added

The President has publicly committed to accepting election results, even if defeated, according to Esipisu.

“It is now imperative that former prime minister Raila Odinga and other opposition challengers reassure the people of Kenya that they will categorically pledge acceptance of the results of the 2017 Presidential ballot and will seek to ensure that the elections take place as gazetted on 8th August by doing all within their power to assist in delivering a peaceful, transparent and timely vote next month,” the statement went on.

Kenya is gearing to hold the polls on August 8 with Kenyatta seeking a second and final term in office, and will face Odinga who is making a fourth attempt for the presidency.

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