NAIROBI (Xinhua) --
Several people were killed as chaos rocked
Kenya’s Nairobi for the better part of Friday as police clashed
with opposition National Super Alliance (NASA) supporters, who
were welcoming home their leader Raila Odinga.
has returned to the country from a ten-day tour of the United
States, Germany and Britain and NASA had organised a grand
reception for him from the main airport.
Police outlawed the reception, leading to a day-long
confrontation with NASA supporters who defied the ban.
Clashes began immediately after Odinga’s convoy left the
airport where his supporters turned chaotic along the busy
Nairobi-Mombasa highway. Some reports said at least three people
were killed during the chaos that also paralyzed the traffic.
The supporters burned tyres, blocked roads, hurled stones at
police, threw up burning barricades as they sang and danced
along the busy highway.
Mombasa Road, where the main airport Jomo Kenyatta is
situated, was the center of chaos with motorists being caught in
Some protestors barred from entering the airport resorted to
stoning motorists caught up in the massive traffic jam.
"I was in a public service vehicle when the protestors
approached the vehicle and demanded the driver to give them
"They were given 2 U.S. dollars by the driver but they still
stoned the vehicle shattering all glasses," said Simon Mutimba,
a commuter on the road.
He noted that three passengers sustained minor injuries as
the shattering glasses and stones flew into the vehicle.
The chaos saw Odinga’s car damaged as police used teargas and
water canons to disperse his supporters.
It was not clear what caused the damage.
However, Odinga’s team said the windscreen was smashed by the
police bullet that apparently was aimed at Odinga’s life.
The opposition leader who was inside the damaged car was not
hurt and proceeded with the procession undeterred.
The government through Interior ministry spokesman Mwenda
Njoka however dismissed claims of attempts on Odinga’s life,
terming the reports as reckless.
He said claims being circulated on verified NASA accounts are
to attract sympathy and urged the public to ignore and treat
them with contempt.
Speaking to his supporters later, Odinga announced the launch
of the Third Liberation that will push for electoral justice,
noting that this was just the beginning and that the day will go
into the political calendar as a special one.
"I promise our journey to liberation is inevitable.
"I want to tell Uhuru that the third liberation has come and
his government must fall," the NASA leader told his supporters.
He assured his supporters that the NASA coalition will stand
firm in the quest for a revolution in the electoral process.
TV scenes showed the protests were coupled with sounds of
gunshots and the firing of tear gas.
The opposition supporters took cover but some returned to the
streets where they threw stones at police in retaliation.
Several vehicles were burnt by the opposition supporters, who
claimed to be clearing the way for Odinga’s convoy.
Business was disrupted the entire day with many traders along
the route closing shops for fear of looting.
Meanwhile, the police confirmed on Friday evening that five
people were stoned to death by enraged crowds for allegedly
looting during chaos.
Police spokesperson George Kinoti said that the incidences
happened around the main commuter bus terminus in the city.
Kinoti said no live ammunition was used during what the
police termed as "unauthorized procession" and instead only tear
gas, stressing that only water cannons were deployed to control
The police spokesman also refuted claims that a vehicle in
the convoy was shot at by an officer and "reiterates our
position that no live ammunition was used today by any officer."