The United Kingdom has warned tourists against traveling to the western region of Kenya due to the charged political environment witnessed in the region in the wake of controversial repeat presidential election.
Citing protests and violence witnessed in the area in recent times, the UK said there are security concerns over protests triggered by the election.
“Media report that the governors of Kisumu, Siaya, Homa Bay, Kakamega and Migori have said that elections won’t be allowed to take place in their counties on 26 October. This may trigger further protests. You should avoid traveling around these regions on and around days of planned protests including areas where demonstrations may take place,” the notice reads in part.
In the wake of the cancelled August 8th election, the UK had advised its citizen in Kenya to avoid regions near the border of Kenya and Somalia including Garissa Lamu County and Tana River counties due to fears of attacks by Somalia-based Al Shabaab Militia group.
Last week, through their Minister of State in the Foreign Office, Rory Stewart, the UK expressed its concern over “the increasingly unstable political situation in Kenya, and encouraging a peaceful and non-violent election period.”
During Thursday repeat presidential election, ugly scenes were witnessed in Kisimu and Migori counties as opposition protesters engaged police in running battles in bid to stop the election from being held in their areas. Two people were shot dead during the engagements with anti-riot police, while several others sustained injuries.
The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) was forced to postpone the poll in four counties including Kisumu, Siaya, Migori and Homa Bay until October 28th. IEBC cited security fears as the reason why the poll was called off in the aforementioned areas.