Kenya Elections Held Today (June 11) After All…With Fears of Ethnic Violence (5pm EDT Update) (Just Say No Deal)

I hope they run elections better than they write news stories in Kenya…It seems the crucial by-elections for 5 parliamentary seats has been going on today after all! Turnout in the morning was low, which is not unusual for a by-election.

(See my previous post for background: In Kenya, Struggle for Parliament is Happening Now–Odinga’s Party Issues Warning (Sounds Like Cousin Obama)

Raila Odinga’s party hopes to retain 3 of the 5 seats. If the party loses their parliamentary majority, Odinga’s position in the coalition government becomes uncertain. BBC News reports:

“The numbers are very tight in terms of who controls parliament. With the death of the minister and the assistant minister now the ODM has 100 MPs and the PNU coalition has 102 MPs,” says analyst Kwamchetsi Makokha.

The BBC’s correspondent describes the coalition as already being “decidedly fragile.”

There have already been reports of hate leaflets being distributed in one area, which raises fears of renewed ethnic violence and post-election violence.

The big question is, of course, whether the “Grand Coalition” survives and what Odinga’s moves will be…

Note: Here is a link to the story from Kenya in the Daily Nation…

Polls open in fight for Kenya’s parliamentary majority

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