Friday, January 11, 2008

ODM calls for 3 days of mass action

The Orange Democratic Movement is set to resume street protests against Kibaki following the collapse of talks to broker a peace deal over the fraudulent presidential results. The party has announced three day of mass protests countrywide on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday next week. Former UN boss Koffi Annan is expected to reopen mediation, but Kibaki has summoned Parliament for Tuesday. “Talks between ODM and the other side have collapsed due to the refusal of that side to negotiate with us. We are not ‘unresponsive’ at all. We worked hard, together with other parties, to come up with a just solution,” said party secretary Prof Anyang Nyong’o at a Press conference.

ODM listed 15 venues countrywide where they will hold protests beginning 10am on each of the three days. The rallies will be held in: Mombasa, Kisumu, Nakuru, Kakamega, Eldoret, Kapsabet, Kisii, Kericho, Nyeri, Embu, Machakos, Voi, Garissa, Narok and Siaya. The Government has previously maintained that public rallies are outlawed until the political mood in the country calms. "Dialogue is not engaged in the streets. Dialogue suggests that people resolve their differences peacefully, over a table, not through destroying property and killing innocent Kenyans," Local Government Minister Uhuru Kenyatta told reporters. Yesterday's failure by African Union head and Ghanaian President John Kufuor to broker a deal has sent panic across the country with many fearing fresh riots.

The West, including the United States and Britain, has expressed displeasure at irregularities in the presidential vote count, and is pressing for some sort of power-sharing agreement. In the latest statement, British Foreign Secretary David Miliband urged both sides "to engage without any pre-conditions" and "agree on a way to share power so as to reflect the clear democratic will of the Kenyan people."

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