Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the winner Friday of a disputed election with 54.27% of votes, beating his rival Raila Odinga who scored 44.74%, the election commission announced.

“Having fulfilled the requirement by law… I therefore wish to declare Uhuru Kenyatta… as president elect,” said polls commission chairman Wafula Chebukati, as cheers and singing broke out at the national tallying centre.

After the official announcement, Mr Kenyatta said observers had ensured a “free, fair and credible election”.

But the opposition rejected the results even before they were declared, calling the process a “charade”.

International observers have endorsed the election.

Earlier, Mr Odinga’s supporters said he had won, and published their own figures. The electoral commission said this was “illegal and premature”, and said basic mathematical errors had been made.

An ecstatic Kenyatta said that Kenyans should now unite, in his victory speech after receiving his election certificate from Wafula Chebukati, the commission chairman.

“Elections come and go, Kenya is here to stay,” he said.
“Let us always remember that we are brothers and sisters. Your neighbour is still your neighbour. Let us be peaceful, let us reach out to one another. Let us share together. There’s no need for violence.

To his rival Odinga, who was not present, he said: “I reach out to you, I reach out to all your supporters, I reach out to all who were elected on now the opposition benches. We shall work together, we shall partner together, we shall grow together, we shall develop this country together.”

Odinga’s National Super Alliance (Nasa) coalition believes the results tabulation process was rigged. On Wednesday it said the computer system tallying the provisional results had been hacked. The following day, he said “most” of the official results forms submitted to the national tallying centre were fake.

Officials gave no credible evidence to support either allegation.

Many observers fear a repeat of the violence which followed the disputed election 10 years ago where more than 1 000 Kenyans died and 600 000 were displaced.

One of the leaders of the opposition Nasa alliance, Musalia Mudavadi, said before the results announcement that its concerns about the poll had not been adequately addressed.