For every inaccurate report in the newspaper, there is a chain of people who have lied and misled the press.
An official I called told me only 24 people had been hurt. Complete disinformation. Our reporter had physically counted 75 patients.
. . . .
Finally, officials speculated that it was a home-made device, made from party crackers. This is what we told Kenyans who read our early editions.
We are surrounded by liars. The government does not hire people to give information to the media. It hires liars to mislead the media.
The reporting on the tragedy around Sunday’s “No” rally against the new constitution in Uhuru Park has been a bit confused. Earlier BBC said the deaths were caused by a stampede and indicated that it was unclear whether there had really been an explosion or not. The AP report carried in the New York Times and elsewhere indicated an explosion, and now the latest on BBC has PM Odinga saying that the detonation of three grenades had been identified as the cause.
Raila also announced a government investigation. Hard to know to what extent the investigation will be serious, and to what extent there will be public information.
Obviously the referendum is going to be going forward in a tense environment. The latest polls, while still strongly “yes” suggest some erosion of support, and there does seem to be a sense that the issue is tightening up as various interests become clearer and swing into action both in public and behind the scenes.