[QODLink]
Africa
Politician's death prompts Kenya violence
Three people killed as protests hit Kisumu after the murder of a candidate for general elections due in March.
Last Modified: 30 Oct 2012 08:06

Violent protests have erupted in Kisumu, western Kenya, following the murder of a prominent local politician.

A senior police officer, who requested anonymity, told the AFP news agency on Monday that three people "died from either burning or suffocation after teargas was lobbed into a hardware shop they were hiding in".

Joseph Oli Tito, Nyanza provincial police officer, confirmed the deaths but denied that police were involved.

"Three people inside a workshop died in a fire. ... There are rumours that police officers lobbed teargas into the workshop which caused fire, but we are disputing that and we are suspecting an electric fault," he said.

The protests erupted after Shem Onyango Kwega, a candidate for a parliamentary seat in Kisumu in general elections due in March, was killed by unidentified armed men on Monday while driving in town.

Al Jazeera's Nazanine Moshiri, reporting from Nairobi, says: ""There is so much worry about what we are seeing right now, as the same place was the scene of so much violence in 2008".

Kwega, the local branch chairman of Raila Odinga's Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), was shot in the head and later died at the hospital.

Kisumu, the prime minister's fiefdom, was a hotspot during Kenya's 2007-2008 post-election violence.

The unrest, which left more than 1,000 people dead and hundreds of thousands displaced throughout Kenya, was prompted by the contested election of incumbent President Mwai Kibaki against Odinga.

Kwega's wife was seriously wounded and was treated at a Kisumu hospital on Monday night, police said.

The murder was initially attributed to gangsters, but a political motive was not immediately ruled out.

Four people were wounded by bullets during confrontations with the police and a police officer was hit by a stone hurled by the protesters, witnesses said.

Police intervened after demonstrators, angry at what they said is the deteriorating security situation in the area and accusing police of collusion with gangsters, reportedly threatened to torch a police station.

Residents said that the riots had stopped by Monday night but that tensions remained high.

337

Source:
Al Jazeera And Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Country
Organisation
Featured on Al Jazeera
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
A tight race seems likely as 814 million voters elect leaders in world's largest democracy next week.
Featured
Since independence, Zimbabwe has faced food shortages, hyperinflation - and several political crises.
After a sit-in protest at Poland's parliament, lawmakers are set to raise government aid to carers of disabled youth.
A vocal minority in Ukraine's east wants to join Russia, and Kiev has so far been unable to put down the separatists.
Iran's government has shifted its take on 'brain drain' but is the change enough to reverse the flow?
Deadly attacks on anti-mining activists in the Philippines part of a global trend, according to new report.
join our mailing list