UN, AU want credible and transparent election

UN, AU want credible and transparent election

The United Nations and the African Union are ready to assist the country in the forthcoming repeat election.

In a joint statement issued on Monday, the UN Secretary-General, Antonio Guterres, and the Chairperson of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, expressed their commitment “to assist Kenya in ensuring a credible and transparent process and upholding the constitutional process.”

They also called on political leaders in Kenya to refrain from acts that may plunge the country into violence ahead of the repeat election set for Thursday, October 26.

“The Secretary-General and the Chairperson of the Commission urge all political actors, parties and their supporters to create conditions for peaceful election and refrain from any act of violence. It is critical that all concerned work towards the preservation of calm and peace in the country,” read the statement.

They further urged the Kenyan police to exercise restraint when deployed to maintain calm and peace during the election period.

“The Secretary-General and the Chairperson of the Commission stress the need for the Kenyan security services to exercise restraint, use minimal force in performing their duties and respect the freedom and political liberties of all Kenyans,” reads part of the joint statement.

Various human rights groups have put police on the spot for allegedly killing and injuring protesters during anti-IEBC demonstrations.

Last week, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch (HRW) reported that police killed at least 33 people in protests that broke out in parts of Nairobi after the announcement of President Uhuru Kenyatta as winner of the August 8 election.

Prior to that, the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR) had released a similar report showing that 37 people died and 126 others were injured during post-election chaos witnessed between August 9 and 15.

KNHCR’s report dubbed Mirage at Dusk indicated that 35 of the 37 deaths were caused by excessive use of force by the police.

Meanwhile, with only two days to the election, anxiety remains high with political tension and uncertainty enshrouding the goings-on in various quarters.

On one hand, NASA opposition coalition has vowed to block the election through countrywide demonstrations while on the other, the Jubilee government insists the election will go on as planned with maximum security being deployed in potential hotspots.