EU predicts possible post-election violence In Kenya
Memories of the 2007 post-election violence are still fresh on Kenyans mind.
Chief Observer Marietje Schaake said their meeting with various groups from the government, opposition, Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) as well as ordinary Kenyans steered them at the unfortunate conclusion.
“It is no secret that there are concerns of a possible outbreak of violence. People in Kenya are concerned about this. The security and safety of the elections depends on the respective bodies,” she said.
Her sentiments are likely to bring memories of the ugly post-election violence witnessed in Kenya after the 2007 general elections.
Within a span of 59 days more than 1,400 people were killed and 600,000 people displaced from their homes, as Kenya slipped dangerously close to outright civil war.
Six Kenyans including the Incumbent president, Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy, William Ruto were later arraigned at the International Criminal Court (ICC) to face crimes against humanity, the charges were later dropped and the six freed.
Ms. Schaake added they are currently going through the procedure of election with a toothpick in order to ensure a free and fair election is held on 8th August.
“They have said they are ready, but we are still in the process of looking at the procedures they have followed and what they have done as they prepare for elections,” she said.
Her sentiments are not far-fetched as IEBC was last week forced to suspend all manner of campaigns in Siaya County after an ugly incident broke out in Rarieda constituency where supports of rival aspirants violently clashed.
“These acts are a threat to peace. There is the need for peace and unity before, during and after the August 8 election," County Returning Officer Ruth Kulundu said after imposing the ban.
National Super Alliance (NASA) led by Raila Odinga has warned the government severally that they will not accept results of a botched election.
The government has however moved to assure Kenyans that elections would be free and fair and they will accept the outcome of the election.
Ms. Schaake also announced that her group was in the process of compiling its findings and would announce them soon.
A team of international observers, 30 long-term and 32 short-term will be deployed even after the elections to continue monitoring the outcome in order to arrest any situation before it quickly deteriorates into a replica of 2007 PEV.
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