US issues travel warning to citizens over petition

By Geoffrey Mosoku

Nairobi, Kenya: The US government has issued a travel advisory to its citizens over the presidential election petitions filed against Uhuru Kenyatta.

In the advisory, the Barak Obama led administration tells its citizens to avoid gatherings and demonstrations as the ruling on the petitions is likely to be issued on Easter weekend.

“The decision may be announced during the Easter holiday weekend, a time when many people go out of town. There could be a strong public reaction to the announcement; therefore, the U.S. Embassy strongly urges all U.S. citizens to avoid gatherings, demonstrations, downtown business areas, slums, and large crowds of any kind,” the advisory stated.

The US warned that gatherings intended to be peaceful could turn violent with little or no warning.

 “U.S. citizens are advised to be cautious and monitor local media for the latest information on demonstrations and traffic disruptions, particularly those who plan to spend the holiday away from home.”  

The advisory was issued on Tuesday as the re-tallying of votes ordered by the Supreme Court that is hearing the petitions, started.

The Supreme Court led by Chief Justice Willy Mutunga is expected to deliver a ruling on the presidential petitions by Saturday, March 30.

There are three petitions filed against Kenyatta, one by Prime Minister Raila Odinga who is seeking several declarations among them those that could, if granted, force fresh presidential elections through invalidation of the recent poll.