By Humphrey Malalo and Duncan Miriri
NAIROBI (Reuters) – Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga said on Wednesday the election commission’s computers had been hacked and fake results posted online, in what he described as a “massive” poll fraud to show President Uhuru Kenyatta with a strong lead.
However, the election commission said Tuesday’s vote was free and fair. It said it was investigating whether or not its computer systems and vote-tallying database had been compromised but had not had a problem with its passwords.
Odinga’s statement, which was based on his belief that a murdered election commission technician had his identity stolen, raised concerns of unrest over the results in Kenya, which has East Africa’s biggest economy and is a regional hub.
Angry protests broke out in Nairobi and the western city of Kisumu, with at least one man killed by police. It evoked memories of a disputed election in 2007, when around 1,200 people died and 600,000 were displaced in ethnic violence.
Speaking at a news conference, Odinga urged his supporters to remain calm but added: “I don’t control the people”. His deputy Kalonzo Musyoka struck a similar tone and said the opposition might call for unspecified “action” at a later date.
Shortly after Odinga spoke, police fired teargas to scatter a group of 100 supporters in Kisumu, an opposition stronghold where unarmed men marched through the streets waving sticks and chanting “No Raila, no peace”.
They later used live rounds to disperse another group, while a pro-Odinga protester was shot dead by police in a Nairobi slum, witnesses said.
As of 1630 GMT, the election commission website put Kenyatta in front with 54.3 percent of votes counted to 44.8 percent for Odinga – a margin of 1.4 million ballots with 97 percent of polling stations reported.
Odinga published his own party’s assessment of the count on Twitter, saying he had 8.1 million votes against 7.2 million for Kenyatta but published no supporting documentation.
The main local election monitoring group said its parallel vote tally was incomplete so it could not comment on the differing figures.
Foreign observer missions declined to comment but urged all parties to stay calm while results were cross-checked with paper records.
Kenyatta, a 55-year-old businessman seeking a second five-year term, had held a steady lead of around 10 percent since the start of counting after Tuesday’s peaceful vote, the culmination of a hard-fought contest between the heads of…