Today from Hiiraan Online:  _
Kenya political talks due to officially resume

Wednesday August 9, 2023

Opposition protesters and police clashed last month

Talks between the governing Kenya Kwanza and the opposition Azimio la Umoja coalitions to end political tensions over the rising cost of living and electoral reforms are due to resume.

Azimio led deadly protests in March and July against President William Ruto’s government to demand the reconstitution of the electoral commission and the lowering of the cost of living.

The unrest worsened after the government introduced higher taxes and levies in July to raise revenue for President Ruto’s first budget.

Rights group said at least 30 people died in the protests but the opposition gave a higher death toll of 50.

No timeframe has been given over the talks by a 10-member panel and divisions persist over the agenda.

Opposition leader Raila Odinga’s team wants to discuss the cost of living and electoral reforms after it lost the elections last year, but the government insists it is already working to fix inflation and reduce the cost of basic commodities.

The opposition suspended demonstrations in April and May to allow a similar bipartisan dialogue process, but protests resumed after talks collapsed.

Both Mr Ruto and Mr Odinga have said that the talks would not lead to any power-sharing deal.


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