Opposition leader Raila Odinga returns to Kenya to push for scrapping of October 26 vote

Opposition leader Raila Odinga returns to Kenya to push for scrapping of October 26 vote

Raila Odinga will return from the UK today after addressing a Chatham House forum on Kenya’s democracy. Three days ago,

Raila Odinga has withdrawn from Kenya’s October 22 presidential re-run

Photo: AP

Raila Odinga will return from the UK today after addressing a Chatham House forum on Kenya’s democracy.

Three days ago, Mr Odinga withdrew from the October 26 re-run of Kenya’s nullified presidential election. Now it appears the controversial opposition leader is seeking international mediation for the increasingly uncertain situation.

Odinga’s decision to withdraw from the upcoming vote has renewed fears of political violence; 17 were injured last Wednesday while protesting President Uhuru Kenyatta’s rejection of electoral reforms.

The administration has also come under fire for passing a law that states that, if a candidate withdraws from the re-run, the remaining candidate automatically wins. The government is likely to continue such attempts to quickly settle the matter in Kenyatta’s favour.

The rapidly declining situation is reminiscent of the disputed 2007 elections, which led to some 1,400 were being killed. Kenyatta is expected to remain in power, but continued protests and the heightened risk of bloodshed will only serve to damage his legitimacy.

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