By Andrew Wasike and Magdalene Mukami
Kenyan police have denied killing more than 30 people in post-election violence that has rocked the East African country.
A statement released from the Kenya police headquarters in the capital Nairobi contested claims made by rights groups in Kenya in numerous reports following the announcement of Uhuru Kenyatta as the winner of the Aug. 8 presidential election, a win that was later annulled by Kenya’s top court citing mass irregularities and illegalities.
In some instances, reports alleging killings of people by police officers, especially in opposition strongholds, have advanced at least 50 deaths.
“Despite the frequent accusations leveled at the police of alleged wanton killing and brutality, our records indicate that four deaths have occurred as a result of police intervention to stop violent demonstrations,” Kenya police spokesman George Kinoti said in a statement.
Kinoti added that 10 police officers had been severely injured in demonstrations across the country.
Opposition supporters, under the leadership of former Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga, have vowed to carry out protests until key officials from Kenya’s electoral commission -- believed to have allegedly aided the ruling party in poll rigging -- resign.
Odinga, Kenyatta’s main opponent has also vowed to boycott next week’s re-run of the presidential election, saying that he would instead hold the biggest protest in the East African country’s history to disrupt the voting process.
Kenyatta replied that the government was ready to counter any threats during and after the Oct. 26 election.
“To those threatening and intimidating the IEBC [The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission], this must cease forthwith.
We must trust and safeguard our institutions to enable them to grow,” Kenyatta said referring to reported attacks on election training staff in key opposition strongholds this week.