Violent protests break out in Kenya; Uhuru Kenyatta officially declared winner of presidential election

NAIROBI, Kenya — Incumbent President Uhuru Kenyatta has been declared the winner of Friday Kenya’s hard-fought presidential election, but opposition candidate Raila Odinga alleged the voting was rigged.

In announcing the results of Tuesday’s contest, the election commission said President Uhuru Kenyatta has won a second term with 54 percent in balloting it called “credible, fair and peaceful election”.

Hundreds of riot police were seen in the streets of the capital, Nairobi, amid fears of further protests by opposition supporters, who called the vote a “charade” and said challenging the outcome in court wasn’t an option.

Protesters loot and burn in the Nairobi slum of Kibera after Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the winner of a hard-fought election. (Carl de Souza / AFP/Getty Images)

 

However, screams and gunshots could be heard in several slumps of the capital’s poorer districts moments after the electoral commission sought to end a four-day impasse over the outcome of Tuesday’s vote by announcing Mr. Kenyatta’s sweeping victory over his rival Raila Odinga on Friday night 11th of August 2017.

Violent activities have also been reported in Kisumu, Kenya’s third city. Fears that the former British colony could witness a reprise of the violence that claimed 1,300 lives after Mr. Odinga’s defeat in another election ten years ago. Odinga lost 2007 election that was followed by violence, that was fueled by ethnic tensions. He also lost the 2013 vote to Kenyatta and took allegations of vote-tampering to the Supreme Court, which rejected his case.

Members of Mr. Odinga’s Luo ethnic group attacked property belonging to members of the president’s tribe in Nairobi’s Kibera slum as police struggled to control the violence, despite being deployed in record numbers.

International observers have said that the vote appeared credible and have urged the opposition to pursue their allegations through legal channels.

Kenyatta, the son of Kenya’s first president after the independence from Britain, appeared jubilant on Friday, waving from the roof of his limousine as he sped from his home to his party headquarters before the result was announced.

  • Violent protests break out in Kenya; Uhuru Kenyatta officially declared winner of presidential election
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