Setback for Raila after US Government's announcement

The announcement by the Trump administration comes 2 days after the swearing-in of Raila Odinga.

In a strongly worded statement by the State Department, the US said it was gravely concerned by Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga’s self-“inauguration” on January 30.

It further said that the US rejects all actions that undermines Kenya's Constitution and the rule of law saying that Uhuru Kenyatta was elected as President of Kenya on October 26, 2017 in a poll that was upheld by Kenya’s Supreme Court.

Opposition grievances

The State Department urged all grievances held by Odinga's team to be resolved through appropriate legal mechanisms.

The US Government also praised Kenya's police for allowing NASA 's supporters to assemble at Uhuru Park on Tuesday when Odinga was sworn-in as "the People's President".

"We commend the restraint shown by security forces and urge them to continue to refrain from any unnecessary or excessive use of force. Any arrests and prosecutions must be made in full accordance with the rule of law and demonstrate transparent due process. We urge all Kenyans to reject violence and hatred. Protesters have a right to assemble peacefully, to express their views freely, and to hold opinions without interference," the statement read.

Media shut-down

However, the State Department expressed its concerns by the government's action to shut down three of the country's media stations.

"We are also deeply concerned by the Government’s action to shut down, intimidate, and restrict the media. Freedom of expression, including for members of the media, is essential to democracy and is enshrined in Kenya’s Constitution. We urge the Government and all Kenyans to respect freedom of expression and implement court orders calling for the restoration of television broadcasts," the State Department said.

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