Because Kibaki’s government refused to conduct a recount (despite EU pressure when electoral observers admitted there were serious irregularities) the opposition’s only option now is to lodge a petition with the law courts. Laughable not only because the legal system in Kenya, along with the prisons and police department, is recognised as being riddled with corruption but also because a spokesperson for the law courts who was interviewed on live television admitted that a petition was likely to take five years to be heard. By which time, of course, Kibaki’s second term will have drawn to a close.
The protesters are working to make their way beyond police lines, they bear branches, a symbol that their message is a peaceful one, but they are being held back by water cannon and tear gas.
I speak to friends. There is growing tension. Supplies are very short. In the west of the country, which saw horrendous violence two days ago, there are severe power cuts and water shortages. People there say the death count of 300 is a huge under-estimation, ”there are fields of dead” in the region I am told.
I telephone the taxi driver I met whilst I was last in Nairobi, he tells me the army is pro government, but that the ODM, the opposition, is very well financed. He adds that the west of the country was quieter yesterday but that trouble had spread to the central Rift Valley. ” By the end of today, the country’s fate should be known”, he says.
Kenya’s business community says the country is losing over $30 million a day due to lost revenue in taxes; the shilling has dropped from 126 to the pound yesterday to 134 today and Kenya stock market sagged by 5%.
Desmond Tutu is in the country anxious to help mediate. Rumours suggest Kibaki isn’t interested to talk to him. And Odinga isn’t interested in mediation talks with Kibaki until he admits to stealing the Presidency.
Kikuyus victimized in tribal clashes in the west are dashing to take refuge in nearby Uganda.
Kenya’s situation is peppered with the heart stopping vernacular normally reserved for her less stable neighbours: stricken, genocide, crisis, refugees, economic meltdown and civil war.
http://lostwhitekenyan.blogspot.com/ is posting from the front line.