Kenya’s opposition leader Raila Odinga vowed Sunday not to back down over an election he claims was stolen from him and urged his supporters to boycott work until he announces his strategy next week.
The 72-year-old told his supporters to stay at home and out of the way of police, after the international community beseeched him to send out a message to try to halt protests, which have left 16 people dead since Friday night.
However, he defiantly vowed to “remove” the government of President Uhuru Kenyatta, who official results show was re-elected by a large margin in last Tuesday’s election that pollsters had described as too close to call.
“We had predicted they will steal the election and that’s what happened. We are not done yet. We will not give up. Wait for the next course of action which I will announce the day after tomorrow (Tuesday),” he told a heaving crowd of supporters in Nairobi’s largest slum, Kibera.
Odinga, an ethnic Luo, who scored nearly 45 per cent of votes to Kenyatta’s 54 per cent, has a huge following notably among the poor who are drawn to his platform of more equitable economic growth.
But ethnic grievance is also a key aspect of his appeal.
Three of Kenya’s four presidents have been Kikuyu and the other Kalenjin, leaving Luos feeling excluded from power for over half a century.