Machetes … oh the dreaded machetes are been brandished in Kenya. It is a dreary sight after the havoc they wield in Rwanda. The aftermatch of last week’s elections in that East African nation is more complicated than Gore versus Bush in 2000.
The Kenyan election was almost certainly rigged in favor of the imcubent… that is what often happen in Africa. However, contesting it with machetes is going to tear Kenya along tribal lines and undermine the recent progress made by that nation. But leaving the results of a rigged election to stand is no panacea either.
The world community stood aside while Rwandans were slaughtered in a murderous tribal rage. Never again , they vowed will such a thing come to pass. The Europeans were sceptical of the results from the get go:
The head of a European Union team of observers, Alexander Graf Lambsdorff, promptly spoke about deep misgivings concerning the counting process. Diplomats in Nairobi, the capital, pointed the finger at the Kikuyu old guard, men who had
feared that they would lose their fortunes if Mr Odinga had made it into State
House. Even if Mr Kibaki’s cronies are innocent of charges of vote rigging, he
will have no national mandate: outside of the Kikuyu lands, Mr Kibaki was
soundly beaten across the country, including in Nairobi.
By contrast, the US state departments initial statement on the results were shameful. They legitimitized a sham election with a congratulatory note. They have since backed from that statement, but the harm may have been done.
I am fearful that Kenya is drifting towards Rwanda’s recent fate unless the world community voiced out and take action now. If you think this is an exageration, well the trend line isn’t encouraging. Money quote:
In Nairobi, the capital, tribal militias squared off against each other in several slums. Witness reports indicate that more 200 people have been killed in the past two days in violence connected to a disputed election Kenya held last week.