28, November 2017
Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta has been sworn in for a second five-year term amid continuing post-election tensions.
Kenyatta’s swearing-in ceremony was held in Kenya’s largest stadium, Kasarani, in Nairobi on Tuesday amid heavy security as opposition supporter were due to protest.
Kenyatta garnered 98.2 percent of the votes in a repeat presidential election on October 26, in which almost 39 percent the 19.6 million registered voters turned out to vote.
The leading opposition group, the National Super Alliance, called on its supporters to gather to commemorate the opposition supporters killed during recent clashes with security forces.
“A return to the political backwardness of our past is more than unacceptable. It is intolerable… This divide cannot be bridged by dialog and compromise,” the alliance said in a statement.
At least 70 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 were the supporters of Odinga, who challenged the results of the first round of the election in August.
That round was annulled by the Supreme Court over irregularities. Odinga then boycotted the re-run last month.
Meanwhile, police had to use tear gas to prevent Kenyatta’s supporters trying to force their way into the stadium, which was filled to its 60,000 capacity on Tuesday morning.
Many fear Kenyatta’s inauguration could trigger renewed unrest in Kenya, a major ally of the West in the Horn of Africa region.