Police have split up the long-awaited demonstration by CORD protesters using tear gas and water cannon. It is alleged that Anti-riot squad clashed with Cord protesters during the agitation as they tried to push the boundaries of the agreement earlier dished out by court.
The police then resorted to dispersing the stone-throwing Cord protesters including Cord chiefs and the party’s supporters using the vices as they scrabbled to enter into IEBC offices.
— ktn (@KTNKenya) May 9, 2016
A court granted CORD the permission to carryout peaceful demonstration that is free of violence but reporters at the scene said the protesters tried once again to enter into the offices of the commissioners to boot them out.
Acting under instruction, police tried to prevent them from storming the offices but the agitated protesters began throwing stones randomly at the policemen.
Government had mobilized officers earlier today ahead of the protest after Interior CS Joseph Nkaissery warned against the activities that threaten peace and stability. He had urged the Opposition to conform with the constitution in their bid to send Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission away, instead of inciting Kenyans to violence.
Nkaissery was reported to have said:
“Unlawful riots over IEBC will be met with the full force of the law. The Opposition must know we have enough teargas to deal with them.”
Other dignitaries including president Uhuru and his deputy warned cord leaders to desist from taking the unlawful way in addressing the issue, but cord has insisted on going on with the agitations.
ODM leaders, prior to today’s protests, reaffirmed their determination to using the Firimbi Movement to throw out the commissioners. The Firimbi movement got its name from the day of protest when ODM leaders blew whistles in Parliament during President Uhuru Kenyatta’s State of the Nation address in April.
Leaders in the Opposition have been in the forefront of the movement aimed at attaining positive change for the country. The protesters called for a change in the leadership of the country’s electoral commission before next year’s election.
The protests today, which began in Kisumu, saw many youths turn up in large numbers on Monday for a second round of demonstrations for the IEBC to be disbanded. The peaceful protest in Kondele is part of a weekly series by the Opposition, for the electoral system to be mended ahead of the August 2017 poll.
It might interest you to recall that the opposition has recently accused the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission of working for the government instead of independently for the good of the country.