Kenya

Nairobi (AFP) Last weekend’s truck bombing in Mogadishu killed at least 358 people, making it the deadliest in Somalia’s history, an attack that analysts say underscores the fragility of the internationally-backed government. With Somalia’s security forces disorganised and riddled with corruption, and deepening suspicion between central and regional governments, the October 14 blast highlights the al Qaeda-aligned Shabaab’s ability to exploit state weakness and prosecute asymmetric war to deadly effect. — Shabaab gains? — Militarily, the situation has been largely static in recent months. Evicted from the capital in 2011,Read More
Nairobi (AFP) The Tanzanian government said Saturday it had suspended an NGO it had accused of promoting gay marriage in contravention of local “customs, traditions and laws”. The move followed a police raid on a Community Health Education Services and Advocacy (CHESA) centre, which is accused of being involved in “the promotion of marriage between people of the same sex”. The government said “marriages between people of the same sex are unacceptable in Tanzania as (they are) contrary to the customs, traditions and laws of the country”. CHESA stands accusedRead More
Nairobi (AFP) Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga said Thursday he could “reconsider” his decision to quit the country’s troubled election race, provided there was “proper” headway on electoral reform. “If proper consultations are done and if proper reforms are carried out, and those fears that we raised are addressed, that made us pull out of this race, then we will reconsider,” Odinga said. “But as it stands right now, our position is (as) we announced it yesterday,” he warned. Odinga made the remarks after meeting Wafula Chebukati, head of theRead More
Nairobi (AFP) Kenya’s polls chief cast doubt Wednesday on his organisation’s ability to hold a credible vote next week, as opposition leader Raila Odinga vowed to disrupt the election with mass protests. In the latest bombshell to hit the presidential election, Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chief Wafula Chebukati laid bare internal divisions and accused both major parties of interference. His no-holds-barred statement in which he slammed the “arrogance and narcissism of our political class” came just hours after another commissioner announced she had quit after fleeing to NewRead More
Nairobi (AFP) Tanzanian police said Wednesday they had arrested 12 men, including two South Africans and a Ugandan, for presumed homosexuality as part of an ongoing crackdown against gays. “We arrested the criminals at (the hotel) Peacock — they were promoting homosexuality. Two are South Africans, one Ugandan and nine Tanzanians,” Dar es Salaam police head Lazaro Mambosasa said at a weekly press conference. He said the 12 were being questioned ahead of being sent before a court and did not say when they had been arrested. “Tanzanian law forbidsRead More
Nairobi (AFP) Opposition leader Raila Odinga said Tuesday he was suspending a protest campaign after three people were shot dead in demonstrations against Kenya’s election body. “In honour of the innocent victims of the state, our protests will stay suspended. On Friday, we will mark the memory of these victims as heroes of the struggle for electoral justice,” he said in a statement. The National Super Alliance (NASA) coalition had earlier said the protests would resume on Wednesday after a one-day break to honour the victims. Odinga said the partyRead More
Nairobi (AFP) Opposition leader Raila Odinga said Tuesday he was suspending a protest campaign after three people were shot dead in demonstrations against Kenya’s election body. The National Super Alliance (NASA) coalition had earlier said the protests would resume on Wednesday after pausing for a day in a tribute to the victims. “In honour of the innocent victims of the state, our protests will stay suspended. On Friday, we will mark the memory of these victims as heroes of the struggle for electoral justice,” Odinga said in a statement. OdingaRead More
Kisumu (Kenya) (AFP) A young man was shot dead in western Kenya on Monday as hundreds of opposition supporters again took to the streets demanding reforms ahead of a presidential election, witnesses told AFP. Police teargassed a large crowd of protesters in the opposition stronghold of Kisumu, who set tyres alight, blocked roads and pelted policemen with rocks as they kicked off daily protests just 10 days ahead of the election. One protester, Michael Odiambo, 21, said he had seen police gun down a young man, whose body was alsoRead More
Nairobi (AFP) Two protesters were shot dead Friday as opposition supporters clashed with police in western Kenya, with hundreds defying a ban on rallies to express their anger over an increasingly uncertain presidential election. In the town of Bondo, the rural home of opposition leader Raila Odinga, a large crowd confronted officers outside the police station, scattering as live shots were fired. Witnesses told AFP two people were shot dead. “One person had his head shattered by a bullet while the other was hit on the chest,” said eyewitness SamRead More
Nairobi (AFP) Kenya’s government on Thursday banned protests in the centres of three major cities, including the capital Nairobi, citing lawlessness following opposition demonstrations against the country’s electoral commission. “Due to the clear, present and imminent danger of breach of peace, the government notifies the public that, for the time being, we will not allow demonstrations within the central business districts of Nairobi, Mombasa and Kisumu,” said Security Minister Fred Matiangi. “The inspector general of police has been advised accordingly.” The outlawing of city centre protests comes as the oppositionRead More