There was madness, hope and some fear on this Tuesday general election of Kenya, which should give birth to the fifth president since gaining independence from the United Kingdom in 1963
Independent Election Commission (IEBC) activists tapped areas that people could not encroach on, but their efforts were in vain. when Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga, one of the two main presidential candidates, was surrounded by hundreds of supporters. this Tuesday morning. Within minutes, sheer madness broke out.
The white ribbons ended up on the ground, trampled by a crowd, after passing the black SUV in which Odinga, 77, was traveling. And, suddenly the doors of that vehicle opened in the midst of the commotion. Odinga greeted the crowd. All of his clothes were blue, the color of his alliance, azimyo la umoja (the aspiration for unity in Swahili). You His followers responded with more shouts, songs, leaps of joy.
“Baba, Baba, Baba!” His fans shouted wildly, referring to the name they affectionately call the opposition leader (“Baba” means father in Swahili).
The former prime minister voted this way in the election. He could not stay in the electoral college longLocated in Kibera, the most populous informal settlement in Nairobi.
He didn’t even get a chance to talk to reporters as he had planned. The lack of control was such that His advisors recommended that he change his plans. But, after his departure, gradually peace returned to this polling station.
shadow of past election riots
Voting in the election is very important for 34-year-old Nairobi woman Jacqueline Mambawanga fear of possible riots Locked him in his house. Odinga told Efe at the Kibera polling station, “I am not afraid because voting is my right. Through these votes I can elect a good leader who does not disturb the citizens.”
It was afternoon. Election They were still open for five hours, But the huge queues of voters seen at dawn at several polling stations in Nairobi were beginning to dissipate.
Plus, the many shops in the center of this capital, which are usually people’s hives, They are closed since Monday.
While the Narrowbites repeat like a mantra that these elections will not be a problem, as if trying hard to convince themselves, many believe that the material triggered past outbreaks of violenceAs was the case after the 2007 elections, which saw more than 1,100 deaths.
The shadows of those conflicts still linger in these votes, with Vice President William Ruto (55 years old) and Odinga, Two powerful billionaire politicians compete for the presidency.
“Supporters of both parties are confident that their candidate will win,” Collins Burudi, 28, told Efe. Clashes as soon as election results are declared
Taxi driver Patrick Kio, 33, looks from his car to the polling stations Not interested that he didn’t even try to hide. The taxi driver told Efe, “I don’t want to vote. For what…? I’m not interested in any candidate. I’ve already voted twice. And it didn’t help.”
went to the polls with Kenya Undo homework. Only 25% of Kenyans trust the independence of the IEBC, which has ignored several recommendations to enhance its credibility, according to a report by the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC).
But still, not all young Kenyans think like Kio. At 22, Jennifer Tekla Nyabaya Woke Up Too Early This Tuesday Vote for the first time. “I’m glad to vote, yes!” He smiled and said to Efe.
Nyabaya has had a hard time finding her name on electoral lists that indicate at each polling station that she should vote. But eventually, he got it.
“I’m worried about corruption, few job opportunities… I don’t even know how long I’ll be able to keep a job right now. More I could not continue my studies Because I couldn’t pay the university fees,” said this young woman, who hopes her votes will help bring about a change in the country.