Kenyan police fired tear gas on opposition leader Raila Odinga's convoy on Friday as people joined anti-government protests in several cities over a harsh cost-of-living crisis and a raft of controversial tax hikes.
Tear gas was fired on Odinga's motorcade after he addressed a mass rally in the capital Nairobi, AFP correspondents said, and police took similar action to break up protests in the Indian Ocean port city of Mombasa and Kisumu, an opposition stronghold on Lake Victoria.
Police were out in force for the protests, the latest called by Odinga this year over the policies of the government of President William Ruto.
At the rally, Odinga - who lost the close-fought August 2022 election to Ruto - announced plans to collect 10 million signatures in a bid to remove his arch-rival from office.
"Kenyans elected leaders to parliament and they have betrayed them," he said to cheers. "Ruto himself who took over power illegally has betrayed Kenyans."
Odinga's Azimio alliance had called for protests over the impact of the new taxes on Kenyans already suffering economic hardship and soaring prices for basic necessities.
Last week, Ruto signed into law a finance bill which is expected to generate more than $2.1 billion for the government's depleted coffers and help repair the heavily indebted economy.
The Finance Act provides for new taxes or increases on a range of basic goods such as fuel and food and mobile money transfers, as well as a controversial levy on all taxpaying Kenyans to fund a housing scheme.