At least two Kenyans have been killed in clashes between police and protesters after the country’s Supreme Court validated the victory of President Uhuru Kenyatta in last month’s controversial re-run of the presidential election.
One was shot dead by police in Kibra, a poor neighborhood of the capital Nairobi where people took to the streets to protest the Monday court ruling while another was reported dead in similar clashes between police and protesters in Migori in western Kenya.
Kibra police chief Enoch Maloba confirmed that one protester was shot dead by anti-riot police in the area. Migori county police chief Joseph Nthenge said his forces were compelled to shoot at protesters who had blocked a highway in the area.
A total of 54 people have been killed in four months of violence over Kenya’s presidential race between Kenyatta and opposition leader Raila Odinga. Rights groups say most of those killed by police have been supporters of Odinga, a prominent politician who challenged the results of the first round of elections in August, which were annulled by the Supreme Court over irregularities. Odinga then boycotted the re-run last month.
On Sunday, Odinga pleaded for help from the international community, saying more and more people were being killed over protests against the vote results. The opposition leader, who returned from his trips to the US and Britain on Friday, claimed at least 31 people had been killed since his arrival in Nairobi.
Many fear the Monday ruling by the Supreme Court could result in a deadly unrest in Kenya, a major ally of the West in the Horn of Africa region, like the one that erupted following the 2007 election. Over a thousand were killed at the time in what was the first Odinga-Kenyatta race to take the office.