Protests turn deadly in Kenya as opposition alleges vote hacking – Orange County Register

By TOM ODULA and CHRISTOPHER TORCHIA

NAIROBI, Kenya — Kenya’s election took an ominous turn on Wednesday as violent protests erupted in the capital and elsewhere after opposition leader Raila Odinga alleged fraud, saying hackers used the identity of a murdered official to infiltrate the database of the country’s election commission and manipulate results.

With results from almost all of the polling stations counted, President Uhuru Kenyatta was shown with a wide lead over Odinga in his bid for a second term.

Soon after Odinga spoke on television, angry protesters in slums of Nairobi and the opposition stronghold of Kisumu in the southwest burned tires, set up roadblocks and clashed with police, witnesses said.

Two people were shot dead in Nairobi as they took advantage of the protests to steal, Nairobi police chief Japheth Koome said. An Associated Press photographer said one was shot in the head.

Kenyan police opened fire on people protesting election results earlier Wednesday in another opposition stronghold, killing one person. The shooting happened in South Mugirango constituency in Kisii county, said Leonard Katana, a regional police commander.

Many parts of Kenya, East Africa’s commercial hub, were calm a day after the elections for president and more than 1,800 other posts down to the county level. But the violence stirred memories of the unrest following the 2007 vote in which more than 1,000 people were killed. Odinga lost that election; he also lost the 2013 vote to Kenyatta and took allegations of vote-tampering to the Supreme Court, which rejected his case.

Odinga, a former prime minister, blamed Kenyatta’s Jubilee Party for the alleged hacking of the election database.

“The fraud Jubilee has perpetuated on Kenyans surpasses any level of voter theft in our country’s history. This time we caught them,” he tweeted.

Odinga claimed that hackers used the identity of Christopher Msando, an election official in charge of managing information technology systems. On July 31, officials announced that Msando had been tortured and killed, alarming Kenyans who feared a recurrence of political violence that has been fueled by ethnic divisions.

Msando had sought to reassure voters that election results would not be tampered with.

Rafael Tuju, a top official in Kenyatta’s party, said the opposition’s claims were unfounded.

Kenya’s election commission said it will investigate Odinga’s allegations. “For now, I cannot say whether or…

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