SIAYA, Kenya, Oct 18 – Siaya County Governor-elect Cornel Amoth Rasanga has sent an olive branch to his rival William Oduol to join him in the development of the county, moments after provisional results indicated he had won the Thursday’s by-election with 107,737 votes.
Rasanga won in the entire six constituencies.
He beat Oduol who contested on the National Agenda Party of Kenya ticket garnering 64,106 votes while Noah Winja who contested on an independent ticket trailed last with 1,446 votes.
The new Governor, whose win in the last General Election was nullified by a Kisumu court over election malpractices, said with election behind him he will roll up his sleeves and serve the people of Siaya.
He told Oduol to join him after conceding defeat and offer support where necessary to ensure Siaya County leaps ahead of other counties in terms of development.
“We have to make a common resolve for those who voted for Oduol and those who voted for me that Siaya is bigger than all of us and therefore we have to work together for the good of Siaya,” he said.
Rasanga invited Oduol to bring new ideas and investors who can develop the county as that responsibility now rests on their shoulders.
He was impressed with the resounding margin of the defeat and commended IEBC officials for conducting a free and fair election devoid of complaints from the contenders.
“IEBC did a good job last time and even now they have done a wonderful job. I can’t fault IEBC, you remember last time it was post election rigging that was in place that made the nullification possible but the margin was 9,000 (then) I defeated him hands down,” he said.
Oduol, who convened a media briefing in Siaya town even before the end of the results tabulation, conceded defeat and announced that a good fighter lives to fight another day.
According to the provincial results, out of the 312,441 registered voters only 173,289 voters cast their votes in the 655 polling stations representing a turnout of 55.46 percent.
There was a standoff at the Siaya IEBC hall where the tallying was being done as supporters of Rasanga demanded that the returning officer Jacqueline Osiemo declare Rasanga as the winner using the provisional results.
Osiemo stood her ground that until she receives the results as contained in forms 36 and 35 from the six constituencies returning officers that she will declare the results and issue the winner with a certificate.
“We are waiting for the returning officers from various constituencies at this time they are receiving their presiding officers from various stations. So we don’t know they will finish but we will wait for them till the time they come. Possibly by 10am tomorrow we should be able to announce the winner and hand over the certificate,” she declared.
However, Siaya County Senator James Orengo put a spirited argument to have Rasanga declared the winner as per the provisional results but he lost the fight.
“Just announce the provisional results,” he said.
Security officers was called in and after consultations, Rasanga and his team left the hall to wait for the announcement of the results on Friday.
Meanwhile celebrations rocked Siaya town moments after ODM candidate Cornel Rasanga widen the lead in the preliminary results at about 8pm.
Siaya residents who were following the electronic release of the results 100 metres away from the tallying centre in a screen mounted by IEBC burst into song and dance.
Motorcyclists drove around town while hooting and signing praises song in favour of Rasanga noting that they were satisfied by the results.