The Latest: Kenyan lawmakers approve changes to election law

The Latest on Kenya's presidential election (all times local):

2:25 p.m.

Kenyan lawmakers have approved amendments to the country's electoral law that have been criticized by the opposition and Western diplomats shortly before the fresh presidential election on Oct. 26.

The amendments require the approval of President Uhuru Kenyatta, whose ruling party sought the changes after the Supreme Court nullified Kenyatta's election in August and ordered a new vote.

Diplomats including the United States ambassador this month said the proposed change puts at risk the election commission's "ability to conduct a better election" and "unnecessarily increases political tensions."

The opposition says the changes are meant to make the transmission of election results a manual process that would have fewer safeguards against fraud, and would make it more difficult for the court to annul an election.


11:45 a.m.

A Kenyan judge has allowed a minor opposition candidate to run for president, a day after opposition leader Raila Odinga withdrew from the rerun of the poll ordered by the Supreme Court.

Justice John Mativo said Wednesday that he did not see any reason for Ekuru Aukot to be barred from participating in the repeat election on Oct. 26. Aukot won about 27,000 votes of more than 15 million cast in the invalidated poll.

The court rejected the August election in which President Uhuru Kenyatta was declared winner after Odinga challenged the results saying hackers infiltrated the electoral commission's computer system to alter the vote in Kenyatta's favor.

Odinga withdrew from the fresh election saying the electoral commission must be changed.