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Political divisions remain in Kenya ahead of polls

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The rift between Kenyan leaders, President Uhuru Kenyatta, and his main rival Raila Odinga, persists as the country heads to Oct. 26 repeat polls.

All indications are clear that the elections, which Odinga withdrew from, would be held on Oct. 26 after the government declared the day a holiday on Thursday.

Kenyatta has hit the campaign trail for the better part of the last two weeks touring his strongholds and those of Odinga to popularise his candidature.

On the other hand, Odinga has vowed that there would be no elections on Oct. 26 and called for countrywide protests on that day.

So deep are the divisions between the two leaders and their lieutenants that attempts to make them dialogue over the stalemate have failed.

Report says Kenyatta snubbed a meeting with Odinga called by the electoral commission chair.

However, Odinga attended.

The widening divisions have led to tension in many parts of the country, with leaders from both Opposition National Super Alliance (NASA) and the ruling Jubilee Party offering starkly different views on the election date.

“If we do not hold elections on Oct. 26, then there would be no elections in Kenya.

“That is our stand and we would not back down,’’ the ruling party said.

However, Jubilee party  Senator, Kipchumba Murkomen sees the situation differently.

“The writing is on the wall after the resignation of Roselyn Akombe from the electoral commission.

“Her statement from New York is loud and clear that we cannot hold credible elections,’’ Murkomen said.

NASA Senator Mutula Kilonzo also stressed need to postpone the elections, noting that the opposition would continue with protests on Oct. 26.

NAN/Vanguard

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