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Kenya: Odinga supporters turn violent against Kibaki’s re-election
An independent group was called upon by Kenya’s attorney general to confirm the results of the recent presidential election as protests over the outcome continued to scorch the nation with Kenya’s opposition bent upon defying all odds.
KENYA ELECTIONS triggered a spark of violence on Sunday when President Mwai Kibaki was declared winner amid charges of vote - rigging. A colossal wave of organised violence hit the nation with Kenya’s opposition targeting members of President Kibaki’s ethnic group, the Kikuyus, who have been driven from their homes in masses.   
 
Mass massacres and burning down of houses is being carried out openly in Kenya by the supporters of opposition leader Raila Odinga. The supporters had successive clashes with the riot police all day in an attempt to make their way downtown for an opposition rally that was prohibited by the government and eventually called off until next week. 
 
In an attempt to defy the police for a second time on Friday, Kenya’s opposition is all set to hold a mass rally in Nairobi while the US top diplomat for Africa is likely to be flying in to seek dialogue with Kenya. More then 300 people have been reported dead in the killings while several others have been injured. 
 
The police fired teargas and warning shots on Thursday to curb the efforts of the opposition to stage a banned protest as thousands of angry youths streamed out of Nairobi’s slums in an attempt to reach the city centre.
 
It’s been five days of ethnic violence and riots that have shaken the world. As the world celebrated New Year, all festivities were fazed with some of the most shocking stories of violence floating in from Kenya. Over 50 Kenyans, mostly innocent children were burned to death in an Assemblies of God Church in Kenya by an angry mob of protestors. 
 
The bloodshed continued into the early hours of morning. The ugly face of human nature has come to light with the sudden outbreak of violence in Kenya that has made us question the nature of the human mind.
 
Offices and homes in the central business district of the Capital were deserted as gunshots crazed overhead. Trading on the stock exchange was also brought to a halt one hour after the market opened due to chaos.
 
Jendayi Frazer, US Assistant Secretary of State is reaching Nairobi today to hold talks with Kibaki and Odinga. 
 
The World Bank has issued a warning that East Africa’s economic growth might come under question on account of the violence. Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi are already suffering acute fuel shortages.
 
The European Nation and the US have urged Kibaki to form a coalition government with Odinga in order to restore peace in the country.
 
An individual body has been asked to verify the election results in Kenya. But some people say that the paperwork might have been forged or burnt down during the past few days by the government and the verification would prove worthless.
 
There is an urgent need for the Kenyan government to reason out things for the betterment of their own nation and people. Burning each other and wiping out ethnic groups is no solution at all.
 
Kimaya Shroff, Political Science professor says, “The Kikuyus must have perceived the consequences if Odinga was elected. But Odinga had gone great lengths to assure them that he would work closely with the business community for the welfare of all the people and not just his tribesmen. The people of the opposition are angry with Kibaki as he appointed all officials and senior leaders in his term belonging to his tribe.”
 
At the moment, Kenyan civil society lies in shambles. It is undoubtedly the most dreadful way to begin the New Year.   
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