A man was on Monday seriously injured by a motorist during protests to force top electoral agency officials out of office.
The same motorist hit and injured two other protesters as he escaped from the scene, near the junction of the Uhuru Highway/Kenyatta Avenue, where he allegedly shot at a pedestrian.
The protesters had gathered at the Central Park when gunshots were heard from Uhuru Highway. There were claims the victim was shot after he tried to snatch a mobile phone from the motorist.
“The car stopped and one man, in civilian clothes, stepped out before he shot the victim once in the leg near the ankle and kicked him before he jumped back inside the car. As the other protesters gathered to know why he had shot him, the driver sped off, running over two others,” said a witness.
The registration numbers of the car were circulated widely on social media with calls on the police to take action.
The victims were rushed to hospital as the protesters marched through Kenyatta Avenue, Moi Avenue, University Way, Uhuru Highway and to Uhuru Park.
Central OCPD Harrison Thuku said they were investigating both incidents.
“Investigations into the incidents are ongoing. We want to know what happened. We will talk to all concerned parties,” Thuku said.
At Uhuru Park, NASA leaders Esther Passaris, Johnstone Muthama, James Orengo, Gladys Wanga, Babu Owino, George Aladwa and George Khaniri among others, addressed their supporters and insisted they would not back down on their demands.
“Until our demands are met, we will not negotiate. We will only participate in an election we know the outcome will be free and fair,” said Orengo.
The Opposition, led by Raila Odinga, wants both systems and personnel changes at the commission, including the dropping of Dubai-based ballots printer Al Ghurair and technology supplier OT-Morpho of France.
In Kisumu, journalists covering anti-IEBC demonstrations were on Monday tear-gassed and roughed up by police officers engaging protesters.
This came as KTN reporter Rashid Ronald was beaten up by the police and a female reporter with The Star newspaper was harassed as the officers vented their anger on reporters.
The officers were uncomfortable with the journalists whom they warned to stay away and stop taking pictures of them as they assaulted protesters in Kisumu.
The officers said the journalists were out to tarnish their profession and render them jobless and warned they would “discipline” the scribes.
Ronald was on a phone link, reporting the demonstrations, when the officers mobbed him, demanding to know why he was making a call. One of them grabbed his phone as another hit his legs with a stick.
It took the intervention of Kisumu Central OCS for the GSU officers to stop attacking Rashid.
“I had received a call from Nairobi and I was responding to it before GSU officers started harassing me,” said Rashid.
Later, the officers confiscated the phone of another reporter, Capital FM’s Joseph Ojwang, whom they spotted taking pictures. A vehicle owned by The Standard was also damaged.
Kisumu County Commander Titus Yoma, however denied the police had deliberately attacked the journalists.
“It might have been a result of confusion with protesters but we are also dedicated to ensuring we protect the journalists,” said Yoma.
The demos started peacefully by MPs James Nyikal (Seme) and Onyango Koyoo (Muhoroni) before turning chaotic.
This was after the police threw tear-gas canisters to disperse protesters.
This happened as NASA Presidential candidate Raila Odinga who was in town reportedly kept off public limelight. Raila sneaked through blocked roads to Kisumu International Airport and flew to Nairobi.
The NASA leader had over the weekend asked demonstrators not to loot or destroy public property as they picket. His pleas worked before things went awry as police engaged protesters in running battles.
They hurled at them tear-gas canisters and also unleashed water canon which splashed the crowds with water.
[Cyrus Ombati, Geoffrey Mosoku, Harold Odhiambo, Kepher Otieno, Patrick Beja, Jane Mugambi, Renson Mnyamwezi and Robert Kiplagat]