Monday, December 31, 2007


A British teacher has told how she and her family including her newborn baby were forced from their home in Kisumu, scene of some of the worst violence to follow Kenya's disputed presidential election.
In an interview with BBC News 24, Alison Rogers, 42, also said the school she ran with her husband had been burned down and there seemed to be no way out of town.

Alison Rogers said looting had left the town without food.
We had our whole business burned down.
We have nothing left there and this morning we had a lot of people at the gate trying to break the gate down to the house.
We phoned the police. The police brought tear gas down and helped us to get to a hotel where I am with my family at the moment.
It's very, very terrifying and made all the more so because we have a three-week-old baby with us.
We have no papers, no documents. In the panic of leaving the house this morning we did not even manage to grab clothes for her so it was a horrible situation arriving in a hotel with no clothes, even for the baby.
At the moment, the British Embassy [in Nairobi] are just giving advice to stay put.
They said there was no fuel anywhere around so they can't get vehicles in or out.
We do feel a bit safer in this hotel at the moment so that's a bit easier.
We were looking after another two [local] families with young children in our house this morning, who are in a terrifying position.
Their houses have been burnt. They had run to us and now we have run on to this hotel. They can't afford this hotel.
It's critical for many, many people in this country at the moment.
Temporarily we can't safely get to the airport and we don't know how many flights there are a day out of Kisumu.
We are told there's one tonight but it's fully booked.
Even trying to get to the airport is a very frightening proposition. People can stone the cars or burn the cars or even kill people en route.
We expected a little bit of trouble around the election but nobody expected it on this scale
We are in a better position than a lot of people in that we have got the possibility, when things calm down a little bit, we will be able to leave the country.
They've looted all the shops. There is no food anywhere in Kisumu. Getting hold of any food is almost impossible.
All the lorries have been stopped. There is nothing on the roads so food can't come into the area.
It's completely surprised lots and lots of people. We expected a little bit of trouble around the election - I think a lot of people stayed in around the election day - but nobody expected it on this scale.
So many people are so frustrated they feel the elections have not been fair, have not been carried out right.
They are very frustrated with the democracy that's been on display here.
People are not feeling that their voice has been heard properly. They are not feeling the results have been fair at all.
Over the next couple of days things are going to become very desperate unless the government can take control very quickly.



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