“Kenya’s political crisis could lead to election-related violence”

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International elections observers to Kenya’s elections are calling for dialogue among the country’s political leaders and the electoral commission, hours to the country’s repeat presidential elections.

Statements by the European Union Observer mission to Kenya and the US based Carter Centre have warned against political rhetoric and called for calm ahead of a Supreme Court ruling on whether the polls should go on.

A statement by the Carter Centre indicated that prospects for a credible presidential election have narrowed and urged for political leaders to use the limited time to dialogue and find a mutually acceptable way forward so that the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) can conduct fresh presidential elections in a peaceful and secure environment.

The Carter Centre further warned that recent statements by Chairman of the Commission Wafula Chebukati made it clear that the current political impasse constrains the IEBC’s ability to conduct a credible election.

They say the current political crisis could lead to serious risk of election-related violence should the elections go forward, especially in areas with strong NASA support.

The EU on the other hand said it was scaling down its staff due to security concerns and would limit its activities to observing the counting, tallying and transmission of results.

The Supreme Court is due to rule on whether to stop the rerun scheduled for Thursday following a case filed by three human rights activists.

Opposition leader Raila Odinga has withdrawn from the race.

Wednesday 25 October 2017 09:57

Sarah Kimani