Kenya's future in limbo after disputed elections

Some question local, regional democracy after Kenyatta runs in boycotted polls with low-voter turnout

Kenya's future in limbo after disputed elections

World Bulletin / News Desk

As this East African nation tries to find a resolution to a political crisis that threatens to explode into widespread violence, observers are calling into question democracy here and the region’s ability to handle turmoil.

A group of opposition supporters headed to the polls earlier this week as their leader, Raila Odinga, boycotted a re-run of disputed presidential polls.

The elections were redone after the country’s top court annulled the Aug. 8 polls because of illegalities and irregularities.

President Uhuru Kenyatta is leading in the disputed election with more than 7 million votes, or 98 percent of votes cast, followed by Odinga, the former prime minister.

Odinga has garnered more than 70,000 votes despite asking supporters to boycott the new vote. It is important to note that Kenya has slightly more than 19 million registered voters.

Following the vote Thursday, four protesters were shot dead by police and at least 50 others were admitted to hospitals with gunshot wounds, according to a police statement Friday.

Violent protests have rocked major cities across the country, including Nairobi, Kisumu and Mombasa and some areas have become virtual ghost towns.

In opposition strongholds, gunshots can be heard every few minutes and roads are blocked with boulders and burning tires.

A number of houses were burned Friday in the Kawangware area of Nairobi by rival protesters. Police said 80 people have been arrested in addition to the four demonstrators who were killed.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 29 Ekim 2017, 12:31