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Early signs point to tensions in Kenya's presidential election

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NAIROBI — Preliminary The results of Kenya's presidential election have shown fierce competition between the two leading candidates vying to replace outgoing President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Tuesday's elections rallied to stability in East Africa's largest economy after two of his last three elections were marred by violence following a dispute over rigging accusations. It is an important touchstone.

Front-runner William Ruto and veteran opposition leader Laila Odinga are evenly matched with 1.2 million votes each, according to a tally by private citizen TV earlier Wednesday. slightly above 49%, respectively.

The winner must get 50% of his plus 1 vote.

The Independent Electoral Boundary Commission (IEBC), an election commission, posted more than 90% of images of election results forms from a total of 46,663 polling places.

But for now, the Commission only publishes pictures, not numbers. Only two precinct-level results are available on the Commission's website.

Constituency results forms must be physically brought to the National Aggregation Center in Nairobi, the capital, and verified before the commission can issue them as official results.

The process was partly the result of his 2017 Supreme Court ruling that overturned Kenyatta's first re-election in August 2017, and the committee's failure to follow the process literally. I mentioned that.

Final results from IEBC are expected in a few days, but legally it can take up to a week.

Turnout was low on Tuesday, with voters also choosing representatives of the legislature and local governments.

The Commission said it believed about 60% of the 22.1 million registered voters had voted. In the last election in 2017, voter turnout was close to 80%.

Several factors contributed to the disappointing voter turnout, including drought in the north and voter dissatisfaction with the government's failure to address economic issues such as rising food and fuel prices. It has been with.

Kenyatta fell out with Vice President Root after his re-election in 2017. He supports Odinga. (Reporting by Duncan Mirilli; Editing by Catherine Horreld, Robert Barthel)