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Kenya gov’t welcomes remarks on Uhuru legitimacy

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The battle for political supremacy in Kenya is now being played out on the diplomatic turf as Raila Odinga and the ruling Jubilee party respond to a joint statement by 11 ambassadors including of the United States and the United Kingdom, on the prevailing tensions in the country.

Over the weekend, the ambassadors of Finland, Norway, Denmark, Australia, France, Netherlands, Sweden, Canada, Germany, United Kingdom and the United States issued a joint statement urging the Uhuru Kenyatta led government and the opposition led by Odinga to uphold democratic values.

They urged the government to ‘comply fully with court orders and protect all democratic institutions’, while the opposition ‘must accept the decision of the Supreme Court to uphold the election of October 26’ and accept ‘Uhuru Kenyatta and William Ruto as the legitimate President and Deputy President of Kenya’.

We want to tell them in clear terms that Kenya is an independent country and the problems of Kenya will be solved by Kenyans themselves. They can only be, but observers.

Odinga responded to the statement on Sunday while addressing residents in the capital Nairobi whose houses were razed by a fire last month.

Odinga accused the international community of serving self interests when they endorsed the August 8 and October 26 elections last year.

He advised the ambassadors to allow Kenyans solve their problems and stick to their role as ‘observers’.

“We want to tell them in clear terms that Kenya is an independent country and the problems of Kenya will be solved by Kenyans themselves. They can only be, but observers,” said Odinga.

Jubilee party applauds statement

Leaders from the ruling Jubilee party however welcomed the concerns of the foreign envoys that emphasised ‘recognition of Uhuru Kenyatta as the legitimately elected president of Kenya’.

Jubilee Party Secretary General Raphael Tuju, National Assembly Leader of Majority Aden Duale and Justice and other top party leaders said the envoys’ demands confirmed there was no place for the ‘people’s president’.

Raila Odinga ‘oath’ aftermath

The government of Kenya and the opposition have been at loggerheads since the January 30 symbolic inauguration of Odinga as the ‘people’s president’.

Opposition lawmakers have been arrested, had their passports and security detail withdrawn, the climax of which was the deportation of vocal lawyer Miguna Miguna to Canada.

Leading television stations were switched off the on the day of Odinga’s inauguration and government initially ignored court orders to reinstate their signals.

Odinga has also since called for fresh elections that he says should be held before August 2018.

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PM Abiy reiterates Ethiopia’s decision over latest clampdown.

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Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has finally spoken on ongoing anti-corruption and rights abuse clampdown stating that there was not going to be any backing down let alone retreat.

A statement from the Abiy’s office issued in Amharic tasked citizens to rally behind the development as a means of ridding the country of lawlessness and criminal elements.

State-affiliated FBC reported that the statement titled, ‘Let’s Fight (the) Cancer,’ said the government was bent on bringing people behind injustices to book.



The statement said the underlying objective of recent arrests was to get rid of Ethiopia criminals. “… criminals do not care about ethnicity, country, or morality; they only care for themselves.

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“The key to justice is to create a system for innocent citizens to live in freedom and dignity while criminals are held accountable and punished in accordance with the law,” the statement read in part.

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Since early this week, authorities have announced the arrest of over sixty former military and intelligence officials arrested in connection with rights abuse in prisons and gross corruption in the military run business conglomerate, Metals and Engineering Corporation, MetEC.

A former head of MetEC, Kinfe Dagnew; and a former intelligence chiefs, Tekleberhan Woldearegay and Yared Zerihun have all been detained and put before courts in the capital, Addis Ababa.

Head of security at the state monopoly, Ethio Telecom, Gudeta Olana, has also been arrested as has head of the entity and brother of ex-MetEC boss, Essayas Dagnew.

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New Zealand denies refusing refugees with holiday visas entry.

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New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, on Friday, rejected allegations that the country’s government was blocking refugees who wished to travel into the country from Nauru on visitor visas.

Nauru’s president, Baron Waqa, also claimed in an interview with Australian media that he had also personally brokered a deal for New Zealand to accept 80 refugees currently located on the island.



“It’s incorrect to say that there is some kind of agreement for 80 specific individuals to take residence or visit,’’ Ardern told media at the East Asia Summit in Singapore.

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“The request did not ask about whether refugees could visit New Zealand on holiday visas,’’ he added.

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The country assessed all applications for visitor visas on a case-by-case basis. This applies regardless of a person’s country of origin or nationality.

The country is under pressure to transfer the remaining 30 children from the island.

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