Kenya: Raila Odinga takes symbolic oath

In Kenya, independent local broadcasters say the government orchestrated a media blackout Tuesday to prevent live TV coverage of opposition leader Raila Odinga swearing himself in as the so-called "people's president".

Today, his political alliance, NASA (not to be confused with the American agency) chose to hold a gathering at Uhuru Park where they would swear in Raila Odinga as the 'People's President'.

Claiming the poll would not be fair, Odinga boycotted the second vote and Kenyatta won with 98%.

Shortly before 3 p.m., Odinga, clad in white, raised a green Bible in his right hand and swore an oath to assume the office of "People's President", promising to defend the constitution and to protect the sovereignty and dignity of the people of Kenya.

Kenya's Attorney General, Githu Muigai, had said in December that Odinga's alternative swearing-in ceremony would amount to treason.

"As a result of what happened yesterday, we have commenced investigations targeting individuals", Fred Matiang'i told a news conference.

Matiangi on Tuesday denounced the opposition's National Resistance Movement wing, tasked with implementing a threatened program of boycotts and civil disobedience, as an "organized criminal group".

Odinga said the vice president would be sworn in at a later date.

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The spokesperson for the Ministry of Interior, Mwenda Njoka, reportedly said the stations' transmissions were cut due to "security concerns", which he said, the government was not obliged to explain.

"We advise our supporters to come prepared to stay until our mission is accomplished".

"There is no justification as to why the media houses were shut and should remain off-air".

Opposition Chief Raila Odinga was expected to visit the home at 11am.

Though the police had said they would prohibit any illegal assemblies on Tuesday, there were no uniformed police in the park and no anti-riot officers or vehicles.

In a short speech, lasting less than five minutes, Mr Odinga denounced "election stealing" and the country's "electoral autocracy", but he said little of his future plans.

"There was no comment from the government when the action was taken, and there's been none since", said Wachira Waruru, managing director of Royal Media Services, which owns Citizen TV and Radio.

On Monday, Linus Kaikai, chairman of the Kenya Editors' Guild, said editors had been summoned by the authorities and warned that they could be shut down if they covered the event.

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