Kenya's government on Thursday banned opposition protests in their strongholds in the country's three biggest cities because of "imminent danger of breach of peace" as the fresh presidential election approaches.
Interior Minister Fred Matiangi said demonstrations are banned in Nairobi, Kisumu and Mombasa.
The right to protest is enshrined in Kenya's constitution, "but we shall not allow a few people while purportedly exercising their freedoms
to infringe on the rights of others," Matiangi said.
The minister claimed demonstrators had looted and attacked police stations. But the opposition and human rights groups have accused the government of using police to clamp down on protests. The government-funded Kenya National Commission on Human Rights has said police killed at least 37 people, including a six-month-old baby, during protests after the results of the August vote were announced.
"Our view is that the directive is unlawful," said opposition legislator Otiende Amollo, who said demonstrations will go forward anyway. The interior minister does not have the power to ban demonstrations because there is no law to regulate them, Amollo said.