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Calm returns to Nairobi, Kisumu as police deny killings

Calm has returned to Nairobi and Kisumu cities after days of post-election protests.

Nairobi Regional coordinator Benard Leparmarai said about 15 per cent of the city had been insecure since Friday.

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Kisumu town and its environs limped back to life after two days of heavy police operations and destruction of property.

Governor-elect Anyang’ Nyong’o came out for the first time to plead with youths to maintain peace.

Nyong’o told the demonstrators not to vent their anger on innocent people and destroy their investments.

“The NASA leadership has repeatedly asked its supporters to stay calm and keep off violent confrontations with police. The NASA technical team is working on the facts on why we rejected the presidential results and the leadership will engage the public on the same,” said Nyong’o.

At the same time, the incoming governor asked the police to stop using expressive force on demonstrators. “I have received many reports where the police have brutalised people in several towns. This must stop,” he said.

He added: “We have met the police bosses in this region and discussed the conduct of their officers. We do not understand why the officers are considering all people criminals. We will not defend criminals taking advantage of the situation to rob people but we must follow the law.”

In Nairobi, Leparmarai said calm had returned in Mathare, Huruma, Kibera, Korogocho, and Kawangware, where NASA supporters took to the streets to protest after Uhuru Kenyatta of Jubilee was declared the winner of Tuesday’s General Election.

Residents resumed their normal life as shops and market places opened for business.

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Leparmarai assured Nairobi resident of their security and urged traders to re-open their business and urged public servants to resume work.

“If you look at the bigger picture, all the 11 sub-counties of Nairobi have been very calm. As you can see today, the situation has normalised; people are moving about their business and traffic is also flowing normally. People are going to churches. So, according to our view and assessment, normalcy has returned,” the administrator said.

Leparmarai added: “The electioneering period is over and youths must not allow politicians to misuse them. Young people should keep off protests. They should not destroy mama mboga kiosks, they should not break into people’s property; they should not harm anyone.”

National Police Service (NPS) spokesman George Kinoti dismissed claims the police had killed up to 100 people whose corpses they had hidden in bags.

“NPS takes great exception to allegations the police are responsible for killing 100 persons. Equally lacking in truth are claims by the Kenya National Human Rights Commission that we are responsible for 24 deaths. These allegations are unfounded and have no basis in fact and are clearly aimed at escalating tensions in the country,” Kinoti said.

He said only six fatalities have been reported in the past two days where “armed criminals were killed after they attacked police officers”.

In Nyanza, Siaya, Bondo, Awendo, Migori, Rongo, and Homa Bay were among the towns that were rocked by violence.

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