Kenyan areas that were hit by deadly election violence were quiet on Sunday, with many people attending church services and police patrolling some streets. Pastors delivered sermons appealing for calm in the Nairobi slum of Mathare, where rioters have battled police who fired live ammunition and tear gas. The pastors asked congregations to help rebuild and leave matters to God even if they feel they have been victims of injustice.
Outside the churches, made of little more than wood frames and tin roofs, children played soccer, darts, checkers and other games. Similar scenes unfolded in the capital’s Kibera slum, another site of recent clashes. The city of Kisumu, an opposition stronghold, was also calm, witnesses said.
While most of Kenya was unaffected by violence, opposition strongholds erupted in protest after their leader, Raila Odinga, said the election Tuesday was rigged. Police gunfire has killed at least 24 people, according to a Kenyan human rights group.
Kenya’s election commission, which declared Friday after a protracted counting process that President Uhuru Kenyatta had won a second term, has defended the integrity of the voting and counting. International observers said they saw no signs of vote-tampering.
The government said Friday that life was returning to normal and that those challenging security forces were criminals intent on looting and destroying property. However, the police came under scrutiny for what the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights, which monitors government institutions, described as the “unlawful and unacceptable” use of excessive force.