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Kibaki wins Kenya election

By Nima Elbagir

Updated on 30 December 2007

Mwai Kibaki has been re-elected, beating rival Raila Odinga in Kenya's closest ever vote.

The announcement from the head of the Electoral Commission of Kenya (ECK) sent Kibaki supporters pouring into the street in celebration.

But it also triggered protests from Odinga's party, which has accused the government of widespread rigging. Those accusations have fuelled two days of ethnic riots.

"The commission therefore declares Honourable Mwai Kibaki as the winner," ECK chairman Samuel Kivuitu told a small group of reporters at the election tally centre.

Scuffles and heckling had erupted moments earlier, forcing police to escort Kivuitu to safety soon after he began reading final tallies in the cliff-hanger vote.

Party agents, politicians and most journalists were then ejected from the Nairobi conference centre, and the ECK head completed the results announcements in front of a small group.

"The doctoring of results has gone on right here," Odinga said after the initial results briefing was abandoned.

"Kibaki has flooded this commission with his cronies and they are putting pressure on the chairman of the commission to announce fraudulent results."

Envoys lamented a second chaotic day at the ECK base.

'The doctoring of results has gone on right here.'
Raila Odinga

"When you see the kind of violence in the country like yesterday and the unruliness that we have witnessed today, it is a sad day for Kenya," said U.S. ambassador Michael Ranneberger.

He told reporters both Kibaki and Odinga should address the nation and tell their supporters to stay calm.

Delays announcing official results have triggered furious protests and ethnic clashes across the east African nation.

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