Kenyan President Sworn In For Second Term Amid Violent Clashes & Protests

By 05:19 Tue, 28 Nov 2017 Comments

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta was sworn into office for a second term in front of tens of thousands who gathered on Tuesday in the country's largest stadium to celebrate what they hoped would be the end of months of election turmoil.

But during the ceremony, police fired guns and tear gas in other parts of the capital, Nairobi, as officers attempted to stop the opposition from holding peaceful demonstrations in memory of dozens killed by police and militia during weeks of election protests. A witness said one person was shot dead.

Police patrolled the Jacaranda grounds where the leading opposition group, the National Super Alliance, had urged supporters to gather to remember those killed in post-election protests since August.

Kenya's election drama meant months of uncertainty in East Africa's economic hub. The Supreme Court nullified the August election results, citing irregularities, after a legal challenge by opposition leader Raila Odinga and ordered a new vote.

It was the first time in Africa that a court had nullified a presidential election, and Kenya's events have been closely watched cross the continent by opposition parties and leaders alike.

Odinga and his supporters boycotted the repeat election last month, saying electoral reforms had not been made. Many opposition supporters on Tuesday were heeding Odinga's call to gather and remember those killed in the months of turmoil.

Odinga has called Kenyatta's inauguration a “coronation” instead.

Several regional heads of state attended Kenyatta's inauguration amid tight security as the country attempted to move forward, even as questions about electoral reforms lingered.

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