Kenya opposition supporters defy protest ban

Raila Odinga still in the race- Orengo tells Uhuru

Raila Odinga still in the race- Orengo tells Uhuru

The protests come as Kenya is mired in confusion over a presidential election that is due to take place in less than two weeks, on October 26. But longtime rival Odinga says his withdrawal legally forces election officials to begin the entire process from scratch - a move that leaves more time for his reform demands to be met. In Kisumu city, local television showed running battles with stone-throwing youth.

The injured are admitted at Relief Hospital. "The rest are small injuries like bruises and teargas that damaged their eyes".

The opposition leader has been leading regular protests against the electoral board, and hundreds of his supporters marched through the streets of the capital, Nairobi, on Wednesday.

Chaos reigned as police tried to disperse the angry crowd.

The article- Raila Odinga takes a gamble by threatening to boycott Kenya's election- quotes that Odinga's decision to withdraw from the repeat polls depended on threats of violence that he hopes his supporters will engage in to stop the repeat polls. Odinga is betting on a ruling by the Supreme Court after 2013 elections - in which he failed to have the result overturned - which sought to clarify what happens if an election is invalidated.

He said: "that law also goes on to say that if one of the candidates dies or pulls out, the election commission is obligated to carry out fresh nominations".

Meanwhile, analyst Murithi Mutiga said that the withdrawal means that Kenya is in "uncharted waters".

Three other protesters had gunshot wounds in the confrontation in the Odinga stronghold of Siaya County, Bondo police chief Paul Kiarie said. Human rights groups protested, with some pointing out that police have killed at least 37 people in demonstrations since the results of the August election were announced.

The all-share index dropped 0.67 percent and the blue-chip index 1.41 percent, while Kenya's dollar-denominated 2024 sovereign bond fell as much as 1.2 cents, according to Reuters data, as political uncertainty deepened. On Wednesday Kenya's national assembly - dominated by the ruling Jubilee party - approved a series of electoral law changes that Odinga has argued will make the "irregularities" cited by the Supreme Court, legal.

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