On the evening of Friday the 11th of August, the results to the 2017 Presidential election were announced. The Independent Electoral Boundaries Commission announced that the incumbent has been re-elected, beating his nearest opponent by roughly 1.4 million votes. President Uhuru Kenyatta’s closest opponent, Raila Odinga, claimed that the process was flawed. Additionally, his agents Mr. Orengo and Mr. Mudavadi, claimed that the process was a sham and refused to take part in it.
These statements coupled with the announcement of the results, did not go well with a section of the population resulting in pockets of protests in Kisumu and Nairobi. The right to peaceful demonstration is outlined in the constitution. However, the demonstration should be peaceful without harm to other persons and their property. Police forces were deployed to these areas and according to the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights (KNCHR), there a total of 24 deaths caused by live ammunition as of Saturday 12th.
Whereas political tensions have reduced in most parts of the country, statements by Mr.Odinga have indicated that there could be a possibility of more mass action. To this end, the coalition stresses the need for members of the LGBQ community to stay safe. The areas of Nyalenda, Manyatta, Nyamasaria, Mambo Leo, Kondele, Migori, Migosi, in Kisumu, Mathare, Dandora, Kibera, Lucky Summer and Huruma, in Nairobi, have been identified as hot spots. If you live in these areas and you can move to a safer area, kindly do so until the situation stabilizes.
If there is heavy police presence in your area or you live in these hot spots, try to barricade yourself in your house. If there are gunshots in your area, move away from the windows and lie low behind concrete walls. Whereas it is your constitutional right to demonstrate, kindly avoid crowds, crowded spaces and stay out of harm’s way. Please remember that members of the LGBQ community are often a target of violence and this likelihood will increase during times of civil unrest.
Should you feel that your life is in danger, or you witness a human rights violation kindly report to KNCHR on their toll-free line 0800-720-627. You may also call the Kenya Red Cross on their toll-free hotline 1199. Other than that, your cluster security co-ordinators should be able to provide assistance. Remember that security starts with you, do not put yourself in undue danger. GALCK will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates where necessary