(CNN) Kenyans head to the polls Tuesday in a hotly contested election that will pits incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta against the nation’s former prime ressortchef (umgangssprachlich).
Raila Odinga, who’s running for leader for the fourth time, served because prime minister between 2008 plus 2013. As the candidate for the Nationwide Super Alliance party, he is certainly one of eight presidential candidates and the incumbent’s main challenger.
Kenyatta, who leads the particular Jubilee Alliance and is seeking another five-year term, is the nation’s most youthful president at 55. If this individual loses, he’ll make history because the only incumbent Kenyan president never to win re-election.
Both top contenders are from politics dynasties that date back decades.
The president’s father, Jomo Kenyatta, was Kenya’s first president while Odinga’s dad, Jaramogi Odinga, served as their vice president. The pair directed the nation after it gained self-reliance from Britain in 1963.
This is not the very first time the sons have run towards each other.
Five years ago, Odinga contested the end result of the election
on the Supreme Court after Kenyatta directly defeated him. He accused their party of electoral fraud, however the court ruled against him.
Fast-forward to this yr, and Odinga, 72, has accused Kenyatta of attempting to rig the selection
. Kenyatta has in turn stated Odinga is attempting to divide the nation.
To earn the election outright, a candidate should gain 50% of the votes, plus1 — as well as at least 25% from the votes in half of Kenya’s forty seven counties.
In case no winner is declared, the particular election will go to a runoff, which may be a first in Kenya’s background.
A peaceful election is crucial to maintaining regional plus economic stability.
As the largest economy within East Africa, Kenya is an important industry route into the rest of the continent. It offers an important buffer of stability in the region that includes the struggling Somali government, and the politically-tense Sudan plus South Sudan.
Kenya is also a major US best friend in the war against Islamist militants in Somalia, where its soldiers have been fighting Al-Shabaab fighters for a long time. It’s also home to the African head office of several international aid agencies, including the United Nations.
Both candidates have campaigned mostly on promises of improving the particular economy and fighting corruption, a significant issue in the government.
Kenyatta has guaranteed to create 1 . 3 million job opportunities, reduce the cost of living and address financial inequalities. Odinga has vowed in order to fight corruption, create jobs pertaining to young people and set up programs to enhance food security.
The youth vote is extremely coveted. Young people between ages eighteen and 35 make up 51% of the country’s nineteen. 6 million registered voters.
Kenya’s final election in 2013 was primarily peaceful, but a decade ago, the country stepped into widespread violence in the consequences of the 2007 vote.
More than 1, 500 people were killed in months associated with bloodshed following the 2007 election right after Odinga — defeated by the then-President Mwai Kibaki — claimed the particular vote was rigged.
Opposing protesters loyal in order to each leader took to the roads, and protests escalated into weakling violence, fueled by decades associated with economic frustration and ethnic competition.
The particular killing of a senior election standard days before the election sparked stress last week. Chris Msando was mind of information technology for Kenya’s Incorporated Electoral Management System. While their department was responsible for voter recognition and result transmission technology for your elections, it’s unclear whether their killing was related to the selection.
Leading up to the particular poll, wary residents stocked on food and water amid fears of the return to violence. But others indicated hope the election will be relaxing.
“We learned our lesson in 3 years ago on how easy it is to tear our own nation apart, ” said Anne Wambugu, who lives in Nairobi. “I’ve bought enough food supplies for 2 weeks — flour, sugar, coffee beans, everything. But I hope to Our god I won’t need them. ”