Odinga withdraws from Kenya's election re-run

Kenyatta says re-election will go ahead regardless as Odinga calls for protests.

Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga has pulled out of the presidential election re-run, scheduled for 26 October, stating that the electoral reforms he had requested had not been implemented.

Odinga says his withdrawal on 10 October would enable the country's Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to introduce the reforms necessary to ensure a more credible election process.

Odinga's withdrawal comes two weeks after Kenya's chief prosecutor ordered an investigation into whether IEBC was responsible for electoral or criminal offences leading to the now invalidated 8 August presidential election.

The rescheduled 26 October date for the presidential re-run followed the supreme court's decision to annul the original result, due to widespread electoral irregularities, in which incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta was declared the winner by a margin of 1.4 million votes.

Odinga, who had said repeatedly that his participation in the presidential re-run was contingent on reforms, has called on his supporters to take to the streets on 11 October.

Kenyatta, who recently described the re-election as a "judicial coup" against the will of the people, says the poll will go ahead on 26 October, despite Odinga's withdrawal.

The political climate in Kenya is becoming increasingly charged, reviving concerns of political violence. Following Kenya's 2007 polls an estimated 1,100 people were killed and hundreds of thousands were displaced across the country.
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