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  • Anti riot policemen attempt to disperse protesters, supporting opposition leader Raila Odinga, in Mathare, in Nairobi, Kenya, on August 12, 2017.

    Anti riot policemen attempt to disperse protesters, supporting opposition leader Raila Odinga, in Mathare, in Nairobi, Kenya, on August 12, 2017. | Photo: Reuters

Opposition supporters claim the election was rigged.

At least 11 people were killed by Kenya police in a crackdown on protests as anger at the re-election of President Uhuru Kenyatta erupted in the western city of Kisumu, officials and witnesses said on Saturday.

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Nine young men were shot dead overnight in Nairobi’s Mathare slum during police anti-looting operations, a security official told Reuters. Their bodies had been brought to the city morgue, the official added. 

Separately, Wycliff Mokaya told the Associated Press that his nine-year-old daughter was killed by a stray bullet while on their third-floor balcony in Mathare.

“I was watching her play with her friends when she suddenly fell down,” Mokaya said. “She was my only hope.”

Another death was reported in Kisumu, a city where opposition leader Raila Odinga has strong support. Kisumu's main hospital was also treating four people brought in overnight with gunshot wounds and six who had been beaten by police, hospital records showed.

The unrest erupted moments after Kenya’s election commission announced late on Friday that Kenyatte, 55, had won a second, five-year term, despite opposition allegations that the tally was a fraud. 

Odinga’s Luo tribe, an ethnic group from the west of the country, had hoped an Odinga presidency would have broken the Kikuyu and Kalenjin dominance of central government. The Kikuyu community, which Kenyatta is from, has supplied three of four presidents since Kenya gained independence from the United Kingdom in 1963.

In his victory speech, Kenyatta pledged to unite the country and said he was extending a “hand of friendship and cooperation” to the opposition. 

Even before the declaration, Odinga’s National Super Alliance, NASA, coalition had rejected the outcome, saying the election commission's systems had been hacked and results were manipulated against Odinga without providing evidence for any of its accusations. 

In addition to the thumbs-up from foreign election monitors, Kenya's domestic observation group, ELOG, which had 8,300 observers on the ground, said its parallel vote tally confirmed with the official outcome. 

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ELOG's projected outcome put Kenyatta on 54 percent, compared with the official figure of 54.3 percent. This was well within ELOG's 1.9 percent margin of error, the group said.

"We did not find anything deliberately manipulated," said Regina Opondo, the chairwoman of ElOG's steering committee.

Odinga has lost the last two elections, claiming fraud in both cases. After his 2013 loss, he took allegations of vote-rigging to the Supreme Court, which rejected his case. Odinga also lost the 2007 election, which was followed by violence fueled by ethnic tensions, leaving more than 1,200 people dead.

Catholic leaders on Saturday appealed for calm and asked security forces to exercise caution during protests.

“We appeal to them to restrain themselves from using excessive force in handling crowds,” said John Oballa Owaa, vice chairman of the Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops. “No life should be lost because of an election.”

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