, NAIROBI, Kenya, Dec 7 – National Super Alliance leader Raila Odinga on Thursday said only Kenyans can solve their problems insisting that they do not need solutions dictated to them.
This comes a few hours after the United States asked the Opposition to avoid extra-constitutional actions such as the proposed inauguration ceremony on Jamhuri Day but Odinga in a rejoinder says his resolve and that of his supporters cannot be stopped.
He was addressing journalists at the City Mortuary, where 12 bodies of people killed during and after President Uhuru Kenyatta’s swearing-in ceremony were released ahead of burial in various parts of the country.
“The Kenyan problems will be solved by Kenyan people. Our friends can give us advice, give those advice in privacy, don’t come and shout at us and tell us that we are going to violate the constitution. Which constitution my foot?” he wondered.
“The will of the Kenyan people will not be stopped. It is unstoppable.”
Odinga further castigated the international community for what he termed as shocking silence, despite the killings targeting his supporters, majority of whom he says are victims of police brutality.
“We are saddened and shocked at the silence of our so called friends of Kenya who are represented in this country. Up to date, not a single embassy or ambassador has raised their voice to condemn this wanton killing of innocent people,” a visibly irritated Odinga said.
“Yet you have the audacity to come and advice us to forget and move on. We do not and we will not recognize the elections of 26th of October this year. We will not be intimidated.”
According to Odinga, more than 200 people have died since he arrived back in the country from the United States.
– What the US said –
The United States, through a statement by Acting Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Donald Yamamoto’s cautioned against Odinga’s planned ‘inauguration’ while calling for dialogue to resolve any outstanding electoral grievance.
“The United States also urges Opposition leaders to work within Kenya’s laws to pursue the reforms they seek and to avoid extra-constitutional actions such as the proposed “inauguration ceremony” on December 12,” he said in a statement on Wednesday.
“We again call for an immediate, sustained, open, and transparent national conversation involving all Kenyans to build national unity, address long-standing issues, and resolve the deep divisions that the electoral process has exacerbated.”
He assured President Uhuru Kenyatta of the US continued cooperation.
“As President Kenyatta begins his second term, the United States will work to deepen our partnership with Kenya of over 50 years. We are committed to working closely with the Kenyan government and people to strengthen further our excellent ties and to enhance security, democracy, and prosperity for everyone,” he asserted.
– What police said –
But on the day of his arrival, on November 17, police in a statement said only five people were killed.
Of the five, they said three were killed by “people after they were caught stealing” but records from city morgues indicated otherwise.
While more people were killed on that day, majority had gunshot wounds while others were hacked to death.
The US also on Wednesday urged security agencies to act with restrain while dealing with protestors, whom rights to assemble is enshrined in the constitution.
They have called for, “quick and independent investigation of reports of excessive use of force by the security services, and that officials responsible for abuses be held accountable. Protesters who are exercising their constitutional rights have an obligation to do so peacefully.”
“In this spirit, we look forward to Kenya continuing to uphold its 2010 Constitution, to include respecting an independent judiciary, protecting the democratic space for a vibrant civil society and media, and ensuring all citizens have the right to express their views.
We remain deeply concerned by the recent outbreaks of violence.”