Kenya’s President Mwai Kibaki has broken his silence on the bloodshed that has engulfed the country since his disputed re-election a week ago. He spoke as the opposition called for fresh anti-government rallies today. Yesterday’s demonstrations were broken up by police.
“I am ready to have dialogue with concerned parties once the nation is calm and the political temperatures are lowered enough for constructive and productive engagement,” said Kibaki.
Visiting a Nairobi morgue, opposition leader, Raila Odinga, was visiting a Nairobi morgue, packed with the bodies of the victims of violence he blames on the President.
He told journalist: “What we have seen actually defies description. We can only describe it as a genocide on a grand scale. I have seen so many dead kids.”
More than 300 corpses have been counted since the election – but the real figure is undoubtedly much higher. The death toll grows daily as those disputing Kibaki’s victory clash with security forces and the president’s supporters.
Kenya’s attorney general has joined those within the country and abroad calling for an independent investigation into alleged electoral fraud. Kibaki’s statement yesterday was a long way from agreeing to that. Most analysts believe he will try to stand fast, in the hope the violence – similar to that seen after elections in the 90s – will run out of steam.