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Kenyan Electoral Official Murdered Days Before National Vote

Chris Msando, the IT manager responsible for Kenya's new voting system was found dead on Monday, outside of Nairobi.

NAIROBI—Chris Msando, the IT manager who had developed a new computerized voting system, which he said "could not be hacked," was found dead this morning—a week ahead of Kenya's upcoming election on August 8.


Msando had gone missing on Friday. His body and that of an unidentified woman were found on Monday in the Kikuyu area outside of the capital, police said. According to BBC Africa, he was slated to lead the public testing of the new voting system today.

"There was no doubt he was tortured and murdered," said Wafula Chebukati, the electoral commission's chairperson for the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).

"In our mind as a commission, the only issue is who killed him and why, and that is the question that must be answered."

The new Kenya Integrated Electoral Management System (KIEMS) developed by Msando will count and transmit this election's results. The system used in the 2013 election was riddled with complications, leading to votes being counted by hand.

The upcoming election between incumbent president, Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga, has led to increased political tension in the country, as some fear the possibility of election fraud and violence between opposing parties. Msando's death has increased such concerns.

The National Super Alliance, the main opposition, called the murder "heinous" and described the killing as "an attempt to drive a dagger in the heart" of the election.

Many Kenyans are sending condolences via twitter, and expressing their frustrations about what appears to be yet another case of government corruption and intimidation—using the hashtag #RIPMsando. Despite the events that have unfolded, some are remaining hopeful for a fair and credible election.

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Photo by NurPhoto via Getty Images.

A Year After #EndSARS, Nigerian Youth Maintain That Nothing Has Changed

Despite the disbandment of the SARS units, young Nigerians are still being treated as criminals. We talk to several of them about their experiences since the #EndSARS protests.

On September 12th, Tobe, a 22-year-old student at the University of Nigeria's Enugu Campus was on his way to Shoprite to hang out with his friends when the tricycle he had boarded was stopped by policemen. At first, Tobe thought they were about to check the driver's documents, but he was wrong. "An officer told me to come down, he started searching me like I was a criminal and told me to pull down my trousers, I was so scared that my mind was racing in different ways, I wasn't wearing anything flashy nor did I have an iPhone or dreads — things they would use to describe me as a yahoo boy," he says.

They couldn't find anything on him and when he tried to defend himself, claiming he had rights, one of the police officers slapped him. "I fell to the ground sobbing but they dragged me by the waist and took me to their van where they collected everything including my phone and the 8,000 Naira I was with."

Luckily for Tobe, they let him go free after 2 hours. "They set me free because they caught another pack of boys who were in a Venza car, but they didn't give me my money completely, they gave me 2,000 Naira for my transport," he says.

It's no news that thousands of Nigerian youth have witnessed incidents like Tobe's — many more worse than his. It's this helpless and seemingly unsolvable situation which prompted the #EndSARS protests. Sparked after a viral video of a man who was shot just because he was driving an SUV and was mistaken as a yahoo boy, the #EndSARS protests saw millions of young Nigerians across several states of the country come out of their homes and march against a system has killed unfathomable numbers of people for invalid or plain stupid reasons. The protests started on October 6th, 2020 and came to a seize after a tragedy struck on October 20th of the same year.

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