I. Brief history of general elections that exhibit ‘post-electionresults instability’Generalelection in Kenya first took place in 1992 December since independence inaccordance to the mulitipartism law that was passed in Parliament. From birthof the mulitipartism there has been ‘post-election instability’ from theresults announced after election has taken place. As we look back we see in1992 elections it being the first the then results were marred by allegationsof targeted ethnic (tribal) violence, pointing fingers to well-knownpoliticians just to mention among them the then president Daniel Arap Moi.Inthe year 1997 again Daniel Arap Moi was declared president by the Kenya’sElectoral Commission(KEC) which was said to be a disputed election but that didnot create instability or any conflict runnning with the same notion. In 2002Kenya had a smooth transition from Daniel Arap Moi to Mwai Kibaki.
In KenyaGeneral elections are held after every 5 years and when 2007 came it was timeto go back to the polls, and cast our votes. As highlighted earlier one of theissues that is a resulting cause of general election is tribal affiliations asit is later reflected in the 2007 elections as this election was labelled2007-08 Kenyan crisis as a lot went down after announcement of results. Inas much as we would dwell in the Kenyan election history from 1963 to2017elections that have brought tension and caused Kenyans to live in fear isthe well-known 2007/8 elections that brought Kenya to a standstill causing Kenyansto move from their original homes due to clashes that even brought about thethen popular name IDPs (internally displaced peoples) which am not proud to saythat they are still in the society never returned to their original homes. According to dailynation august (2017) 2007-2008: post-election violence”OnDecember 27, 2007, outgoing president Mwai Kibaki is proclaimed winner againbut his challenger Raila Odinga says the vote was rigged. Clashes in thefollowing weeks kill more than 1,100 people and force 600,000 from their homes,in a country that had previously been renowned for its stability. The epicenterof the violence is the Rift Valley, pitting members of the Kalenjin and Luoethnic communities, who mainly back Odinga, against their Kikuyu neighbors, towhich Kibaki belongs On February 28, 2008 an internationally-brokeredpower-sharing agreement is signed under which Kibaki keeps his job and Odingabecomes prime minister.”thisarticle tells us of how the nation went into a sharp divide between the luosand the kikuyus as they were fighting each other to the point of death as they wereprotecting what belonged to them assuming that the then main gamers were RailaOdinga and Mwai Kibaki.
where I live (kibera) it was so intense that the youthwere being mobilized to chase out the kikuyus from their places saying thatthis was not their home and that it is Raila’s backyard so they have no reasonliving there. We used to stay all night long manning our gates because even ourguard at that time was being used as Intel to give up the kikuyus in our estateit was so sad.Thekikuyus had to run for their lives before they were cought.The youths werecarrying machetes, pangas and even guns it was like a movie but when I saw thiswith my own eyes I was scared .It got to a time when no other community wasallowed except from the luos that’s when we also moved out to get security evenliving our belongings behind was something to worry about. When moving out ofthe area you could not go through the main exit rather you would find othermeans and that was through the back since we lived near the railway line wecould jump over the fence to get to the other side and get means of transportto ferry you to the other side.Tothose who remained they had to endure with the harsh treatment and harassmentsthat went on and on.
Keep in mind that the youth that were coming to cause havocin the estates had left their families safe and down there were they lived(slumarea) life was normal for them.At this time during the clashes there was nopolice force whatsoever unlike 2017 where we had protection from the police andthis time (2017) it was not as bad as then but still could blame the policeforce for the lives lost.Backin 2007/8 I remember was the time that we were transitioning to the next yearwhich was 2008 which the violence spilled over and caused a delay.
I remember Ireported school almost in march and due to the delay we were rushed through thesyllabus which for me I saw a rough year ahead. Still on the topic of destructionthere was massive demolition of schools in my home area in that when I resumedback to school I saw my fellow mates suffer because of lack of classrooms sincethey had to wait for construction of new classrooms for them to resettle backin. http://www.gettyimages.com/detail/news-photo/kenyan-school-girl-is-accompanied-past-a-burnt-out-metal-news-photo/78928351thisuniform is from one of the schools near our place famously known for itsperformance the child is wondering of how the buildings she was used to seeingbecame ashes as she walks with the father, and the father is trying to explainto her in a way she will understand.
That building you see there, was one ofthe biggest driving school in our area and the reason as to why it was burnt itwas either looting or because it belonged to a kikuyu .Those were the tworeasons as to why there was destruction of property and it still the same in2017 lucky enough this year businessmen were taking caution of their propertiesso the looting was not much.II.similarities ordifferences with the previous election compared to 2017Thisyear’s elections which took place on the 8th of august 2017.
Spearheadingthis election was again president Uhuru Kenyatta and former Prime MinisterRaila Odinga Jubilee and Nasa flag bearers respectively .As Kenyans wouldinterprete it was a similar race in 2007 since they represented the kikuyu andthe luo and again Kenyans were afraid that history would repeat itself unlikethe history of their fathers who were running for the presidential seat sometime back …no it was the violence history. Once more Uhuru was defending his seatfor the second term and again Raila was trying his lack one more time, thistime he was so sure he was going to get the seat causing the electioncommission to prepare the election a fresh and also returning the voters to theballot box.Inthe 2017 Elections, I took part in conducting the elections. And where I wasconducting the elections it was believed to be the Nasa stronghold and so therewas no way ‘baba’ could not win and so people showed up in large numbersdespite the weather and that time it was rainy. Following the procedures wellthe voters voted and those that were not there on time they were locked out.
After tallying the results at the constituency level we forwarded results tothe national tally which was at bomas and from there we waited for the overallresults which was announced and when the announcement was done the electoralbody found that Uhuru was once again the president and William Ruto his deputy,but this was not happy news to the Nasa fraternityas they rejected the results. Immediately it was announced hell broke loose inkibra when the youth took their frustrations to the streets raising tension inthe neighborhood looting and lighting up tyres on the road, blocking vehicles to passand if they were to pass they were charged not less than ksh100.This went untilthe Nasa team presented their petition to the high court and their case wasgranted hearing.
This was a happy moment for the kibra residents that theyfinally got justice but the real fight was not over they celebrated and madehigh and good remarks concerning the chief justice David Maraga.The courtdecided that a fresh election to be held after 60 days as per the constitutionand on the 26th of October we were back at it again, fresh pollelections.TheNasa still had it in mind that they would still win but come the eve of 26thword went round in my neighbourhood that if you were found voting on that dayyou will not go home since the claims were that there were no reforms and thatwe were going to vote with the same systems in place and therefore elections of26th would not be recognized according to Raila and the Nasasupporters so around our place people were scared to go and vote but those whowere early they had the chance to vote .
still there were the brave ones whowent ahead and voted despite the threats. This was something different comparedto the previous elections going back to the ballot box was a historical eventthat has never taken place in the history of Kenya.Thistime round the political divide among the people was so sharp that it got tothe extent that when you alighted at a certain stage you were asked your tribeand if your tribe is their enemy you were magged.I recall this instance where I had just alightedand walked home that I hear teargas and commotion and when I asked I was toldthere was a road block that was blocking kikuyus from entering the estates andthat they should be killed. During this happenings the young boys were takingadvantage of the situation and turning it into theft asking everyone who passeddespite your tribe that you should givethem money and if you do not they will be forced to steal it from you .Mybrother was held at gun point to surrender his belongings he was so terrifiedthat when he got home he was shaking to the point that he could not narrate what happened till the next day ,hewas so disappointed because when he encountered with them he saw familiar facesand that he could not believe what they did to him.
So this time the mugging wasrampant and that many youths were involved in destruction and not as many livesthat were lost back in 2007 were lost in 2017 but lives were lost during demonstrationsand young lives for that matter.Anotherdifferent happening was that there were few cases of displaced people thisresulting from cases that the burning extended to people’s homes even burningproperty like vehicles. These times round the police force were involved but inmost cases they were brutally handling the people.
According to the human rights watchaugust (2017) OnAugust 12, the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights reported thatthe police had killed at least 24 people nationwide, including one in Kisumuand 17 in Nairobi. The number is most likely much higher, as Kenyan media wereslow in reporting on the violence and families have been afraid to speak out.III.whatKenyans and non-Kenyans opinions, experiences, fears, wishes, hopes etc.belowis a sample of my questionnaire that will shed light on this.
The questionnaire belowis used for class work assignment with regard to the 2017 General Elections inKenya. Your response will be highly appreciated.