Kenya Raila takes oath as People's President

Kenya Raila takes oath as People's President

Kenyan authorities shut down TV stations to prevent live coverage of a swearing-in event by opposition leader Raila Odinga, who boycotted last year's disputed presidential election.

On Tuesday (Jan. 30), thousands of NASA supporters thronged the Uhuru Park in downtown Nairobi for the oath-taking ceremony.

Senators George Khaniri, Ledama ole Kina and a host of ODM MPs attended the event.

NPR's Eyder Peralta, reporting from Nairobi, says the government had declared that if Odinga took the oath of office, it would be treason and punishable by death.

Dr Siso wrote in the caption, "WDMK leaders in consultation and readying to walk over to Uhuru Park".

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"If in this country we ever relied on the benevolence of the police, we would not have achieved anything democratically", Magaya said.

"We have achieved everything we have achieved through defiance, through resistance and sustenance of a struggle to ensure we liberate ourselves from the yolk of the police state and dictatorship", he added.

While threats have been made in the past, the government switching off media broadcasting signals is unusual, the BBC reported.

"Kenyatta as well - by resisting all attempts at dialogue, he has put himself in a position where he will continue to struggle to be seen as the president of all Kenyans".

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Months after balking at the plan and raising doubts about whether it would make good on its promise, Kenya's opposition coalition has sworn in Raila Odinga as the "people's president".

"Kenyatta's government lacks legitimacy due to the poor turnout in the election re-run, but he has shown limited intent to try to overcome the country's division", said Emma Gordon, Senior Africa Analyst at Verisk Maplecroft. The Supreme Court nullified Kenyatta's August win after Odinga challenged it claiming electoral fraud. The commission said the information was fake, and said the opposition was misleading the public "on the results pathway, the servers, information on the public portal and the forms used to declare results".

Apparently the Wiper Party leader was expected to take oath alongside Raila Odinga since the presidency is a joint business of the president and his deputy.

Ecstatic supporters who went to the venue from as early as 6am cheered, danced and blew whistles during the proceedings.

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