President Kenyatta calls for peaceful poll, urges people to turn out

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Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday urged his supporters to turn up for Thursday’s repeat presidential election, saying the country will emerge from the current political upheavals.

Kenyatta’s call came on the back of opposition leader Raila Odinga’s reiteration that he will not take part in the vote. The veteran politician called upon his supporters not to participate in the election, saying they should instead hold prayers.

The President in his speech acknowledged that his country had undergone challenges, but gave assurances that it would emerge from them.

“I believe we can hold together as a country through these challenges. i believe we as a country can respect the independence of our constitution. I also believe that people will put aside partisan ambitions to take part in the democratic processes. I believe if we can do that we can emerge stronger,” Kenyatta said in his address.

He urged those who will vote to do so and go back home afterwards, calling upon Kenyans to regard each other as brothers.

“I say after you vote, and I’ve said this before, please go home. Go back to your neighbour and despite their origin, your neigbour is your brother, your neighbour is your sister,” he said.

The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) on Wednesday announced that the election will go on as planned, and that polling stations will open at 6:00AM local time.