Kenya: 8 More Killed in Chaos
The Nation (Nairobi)
18 January 2008
Posted to the web 18 January 2008
Eight more people were killed in Nairobi and Kisumu as police battled with demonstrators on the second day of rallies called by ODM to protest at the disputed results of the December Presidential election.
Police shot a man identified by relatives as Felix Okong’o in Nairobi’s Mathare North area in what they said was a confrontation between them and demonstrators.
Another man was killed in Kibera while a third was burnt to death in a house in Nairobi’s Ruaraka area.
Meanwhile, the European Union Parliament Thursday passed a resolution to freeze aid to Kenya until the election dispute is resolved.
Anti-riot police were engaged in running battles in the city’s Mathare, Kibera and Dagoretti areas in an effort to stop ODM supporters from making their way to Uhuru Park, the venue of the rally, which was sealed off by GSU officers.
Calm was reported in other parts of the country as the ODM protest rallies entered a second day.
The party claims its Presidential candidate Raila Odinga won the elections but the polls were rigged in favour of President Kibaki.
Violence also broke out in Narok Town, Mwatate and Voi as police fought with protesters to stop the rallies.
Business was disrupted in the city centre in the afternoon as police battled demonstrators.
In Kisumu, three people were shot on Wednesday night in Manyatta, Arina and Nubian estates while a fourth one was shot on the Kisumu-Busia highway as they staged a demonstration.
And a bullet tore through a tin-walled dwelling in Bandani estate killing a single mother inside identified as Judith Namukuru.
The deaths brought to six, the number of people killed in Kisumu since Wednesday. The shooting of a man on Wednesday captured on television camera sparked an uproar by Nyanza MPs who called for the officer’s prosecution.
Tension remained high in the town as police patrolled the central business district and the estates.
Nyanza PPO Grace Kaindi said the victims were killed when demonstrators clashed with security personnel at Kondele, Manyatta and Arina estates.
She said two others were shot last night after they broke into an abandoned house at Arina estate.
In Nairobi, a sudden appearance of Pentagon members Najib Balala and Mrs Charity Ngilu forced riot police to throw tear gas on Kenyatta Avenue and Banda Street to disperse people.
The two MPs scampered in different directions later regrouping at the Serena Hotel where they were denied entry. At the hotel, Foreign minister Moses Wetang’ula met former Mozambique President Joachim Chisano and former Botswana President Ketumile Masire. The minister told the Press he was briefing the leaders on the current situation in the country.
Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka also went to the hotel in the afternoon, but journalists were barred from entering the venue. Government spokesman Alfred Mutua played down the rallies and instead appealed to civil servants to report to work as usual.
In Eldoret, road blocks were set up at four points on the main roads leading to the town despite the tight security by the GSU personnel, regular and Administration police.
Those closed included the Eldoret-Nakuru highway, Iten-Eldoret-road, Kapsabet-Eldoret and Eldoret-Webuye roads.
Five workers at Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital were injured when police fought demonstrators in the town.
They were hurt as police dispersed demonstrators who appeared to have taken cover in the hospital’s compound.