Protesters who had gathered at the election oversight body IEBC’s headquarters carrying banners and throwing stones calling for the removal from office of the election oversight commission whom they accused of bias were dispersed by the police who used teargas and water cannons in the process.
The clash between the protesters and the police over IEBC is the third recorded within a month. Kenya hold its presidential and parliamentary elections in August 2017 but the political parties have already started laying ground work and seeking support.
The protesters who belonged to the opposition party CORD led by Raila Odinga has already taken the IEBC to court over the claims that the commission is biased and that all its members should quit. The IEBC officials dismissed the claims by the opposition parties and have vowed to remain office.
The opposition leader’s car got smashed in the process and the Cord is accusing the police of using live ammunition against unarmed protesters. Nairobi County Police Commander Japhet Koome dismissed the allegations saying no live bullets were used. Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyata has urged the people to follow proper channels and stop resorting to violence.
Public Communication Director at State House Munyori Buku blasted Odinga and criticized the demos arguing that, “the opposition leader is not interested in a new IEBC, he is fighting against the Constitution because it didn’t – and is unlikely – to make him President”.
Meanwhile there were reports of looting in the city center, looters took advantage of the skirmishes and looted valuables in the nearby shops and businesses. Members of parliament have castigated the rowdy behavior by Odinga’s people and said that they will hold Odinga as personally responsible for the disturbances.