Kenya: Why arrest of Venezuelans fuels fear of post-poll turmoil

In depth
This article is part of the dossier: Kenya 2022: Who will win the great race?

By Jeff Otieno
Posted on Friday, 29 July 2022 14:35, updated on Monday, 8 August 2022 14:20

A policeman stands guard as the first batch of ballot papers to be used in the upcoming general election arrives at the airport in Nairobi, Kenya Thursday, July 7, 2022. (AP Photo)

What appeared as a normal arrest of  a foreigner at Kenya’s main airport has now turned into a major row between the electoral commission and the police, threatening to throw one of the country’s most competitive elections into disarray. Will the elections be deemed credible after all is done and dusted?

On the afternoon of Thursday 21 July, police officers on duty at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport (JKIA) became suspicious of a foreigner who had disembarked from a long-haul flight that passed through the tax haven country of Panama.

On inspecting his personal luggage, the officers found sensitive election materials that were to be used in this year’s polls set for 9 August.

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