Situation in Kenya

March 27, 2013 - Dar es Salaam, Tanzania

I’m in Tanzania since two weeks now and I’ll stay here for two more weeks. Because I don’t have access to the Kenyan news-channel, it is hard to get information about my “host-home-country”. But I gathered some information and will display them here. This is all I know about Kenya. I’m waiting to go back until the final ruling is out and everything is safe for sure.

PS: I cannot upload pictures here, the connection is too slow. You'll have to wait until I'm back in Mombasa to see new pictures. I'm sorry.

Travel Security Online - Control Risks:

19.03.2013

 

 

Kenya: Supreme Court's review of poll results to stall government business, fuel localised protests

 

CONTROL RISKS: The Supreme Court on 18 March began studying presidential runner-up Raila Odinga's legal challenge to the results of the 4 March election. Local courts are also reviewing contested county results. Meanwhile, President-elect Uhuru Kenyatta on 18 March petitioned the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague (Netherlands) not to pursue its case against him after it dropped charges on 11 March against his co-accused, former civil service chief Francis Muthaura.

Government business is likely to remain on hold until the Supreme Court's ruling, as Kenyatta cannot be sworn in until a decision is reached. In the meantime, we do not expect even minor administrative decisions to be made at local or national level. We expect delays in contract negotiations or implementation until at least 16 April, when Kenyatta will take office in the likely event that the election results are validated.

Protests are likely whichever way the Supreme Court rules. In the unlikely event that evidence of vote-rigging emerges, demonstrations would be credible around the Supreme Court in the capital Nairobi on 30 March, the scheduled date for the ruling. Meanwhile, Odinga has raised expectations among his supporters, increasing the likelihood of unrest if he loses his appeal. However, any protests are unlikely to escalate as we expect both politicians to appeal for calm.

The ICC's deliberations on Kenyatta's appeal are unlikely to prompt significant unrest. Key witnesses in Muthaura's case have been discredited, forcing the ICC to drop the case and encouraging Kenyatta's lawyers to appeal for his own case to be dropped on similar grounds. While the ICC could still rule against Kenyatta, the institution has lost significant credibility. We do not expect the case to be dropped, but this will have little bearing on popular reaction.

 

Appealing the results

 

Kenyatta won the election by 830,000 votes, but he cannot officially be sworn in until the Supreme Court rules on Odinga's petition. Should the court rule the results invalid, a new presidential election must be held within 60 days, and by 29 May at the latest. The six lower-placed presidential candidates would be unlikely to run again, making any new election a de facto run-off between Odinga and Kenyatta.

 

26.03.2013

 

Kenya: Partial vote re-tally to prolong political uncertainty; large-scale unrest unlikely

 

 

CONTROL RISKS: The Supreme Court in the capital Nairobi on 25 March ordered votes in 22 of the 33,000 polling stations from the 4 March presidential election to be re-tallied. The Coalition for Reform and Democracy (CORD) – whose presidential candidate, Raila Odinga, lost the elections to Uhuru Kenyatta – on 16 March filed a petition to the court alleging electoral irregularities. The re-tally is scheduled for 26 March. The ruling on Odinga's petition is currently set for 30 March.

 

The court's order to re-tally some votes partially validates Odinga's fraud claims, prolonging political uncertainty. Although Kenyatta narrowly edged over the 50% victory threshold, the re-counted votes are unlikely to be enough to change the electoral outcome. A presidential candidate must obtain 50% plus one of the total vote to win the election. However, if significant errors are found, the credibility of the national tallying exercise will be called into question.

Nevertheless, we expect Kenyatta's position to be upheld. Should the court rule the results invalid, a new presidential election must occur within 60 days. However, observers deemed the elections largely free and fair, and any re-count is likely to continue to reflect Kenyatta's lead. Likewise, if CORD's petition is upheld, a straight run-off between Odinga and Kenyatta is more likely than fresh elections, and would be likely to result in another Kenyatta victory.

Kenyatta's lawyers on 26 March said that they had not been given sufficient time to study petition evidence. As such, the 30 March ruling is increasingly likely to be delayed, prolonging tensions and possibilities for associated unrest between Kenyatta and Odinga supporters. Moreover, as the national government is effectively stalled awaiting the Supreme Court judgment, tensions are rising at lower levels of Kenya's new devolved administration, increasing the likelihood of localised protests.

Small-scale protests are likely in the vicinity of the Supreme Court in central Nairobi from 30 March. The US on 26 March issued a warned that the ruling could elicit protests. Unrest by Odinga supporters is now more likely if he loses his appeal, while Kenyatta supporters are likely to demonstrate if the court calls for a run-off. However, any protests are unlikely to escalate significantly, and both politicians will appeal for calm.

 

Tally-ho

Odinga claims that his votes were reduced in some constituencies while Kenyatta's were inflated. Kenyatta won by 830,000 votes, or 50.07% against Odinga's 43.31%. Kenyatta cannot officially be sworn in until the Supreme Court rules on Odinga's petition.

The Supreme Court has also ordered the electoral commission (IEBC) to provide the voter registration lists it used when conducting the initial voting tallies. The electronic system it initially used to count votes broke down during the process, causing delays. The recount is intended to determine whether the number of votes cast exceeded the number of registered voters, as claimed by CORD.

 

 

 

 


3 Comments

Alex:
March 29, 2013
Hi Sonja!! how is everything going there? I can read of your message that things are not so good as they should be. Hope everything goes well and you can tell us more adventures. kisses
Christiane:
April 3, 2013
Hallo Sonja,
ich bin froh, dass du sicher in Tansania bist. Ich hoffe, du kannst die Zeit mit Angela und Siggi genießen und dass sich die Situation bald zum Guten für dich klärt.
Pass auf dich auf.
Liebe Grüße
Christiane
Conny:
April 18, 2013
Liebe Sonja !
Das waren ja wieder viele neue Infos. Es scheint ja noch ziemlich unklar zu sein, wann es ratsam ist, wieder zurückzureisen. Aber so lernst Du gleich zwei afrikanische Länder näher kennen, und die scheinen ja recht unterschiedlich zu sein.
Wir wünschen Dir noch viele gute Erfahrungen
Alles Liebe von Cornelia & Co
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