Kenya switches off TV stations amid opposition swearing-in fete

The opposition had rejected to recognize Uhuru Kenyatta as president of Kenya after he was declared victor of the October 26 repeat election.

The park was filled to capacity as thousands of the former Prime Minister's supporters traveled from different regions in the country to attend the ceremony.

"When I left my residence at around 11am I had communicated with my colleagues and we agreed to meet and proceed to Uhuru Park".

"Both Raila Odinga and Uhuru Kenyatta are pushing their brinkmanship to a new level", said Rebekka Rumpel of Chatham House's Africa Programme.

"Today is a historic day in the history of Kenya", he said.

They however said Nasa remained strong and united and that the principals would meet within two days "to address the enormous challenges facing this country".

The International Crisis Group, a global think tank, said in a statement that Kenyan political leaders should move away from hardline positions and engage in search for a durable solution to polarization that peaked during the last election cycle.

But in Odinga's strongholds, which are mostly composed of his Luo tribe and other allied ethnic groups, there has been enormous frustration with Kenyatta's government.

He called on Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and the African Union to intervene and "open negotiations between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Mr Raila Odinga to set up a roadmap for peace".

Asked how Kenya will be run with two presidents, NASA's chief executive officer Norman Magaya was unequivocal: "Kenya will not have two presidents", he said.

Repeated calls to multiple officials at the Communications Authority were not returned. He also said the government had "good reasons" for interrupting television broadcasts of the gathering.

"As you know today I have one of the most important clients of my life.I have come so that the instructions are fulfilled".

The ceremony is to take place at a park in central Nairobi where a great number of crowds are awaiting for the occasion to start.

However, the stations continued to stream the footage online.

Following the ceremony, many opposition supporters will now be waiting for Odinga to outline the next steps, after his swearing into office.

"There has been no meeting by the Kenya Editors' Guild Executive Committee to agree on, and issue the statement alleged to have been sent out by Kaikai", Maina said.

  • Leroy Wright