Kenyan president says he is willing to negotiate after election boycott

President Uhuru Kenyatta has raised the prospect of negotiations with his opponent as millions of Kenyans voted in a contentious election rerun marred by a widely observed boycott and sporadic violence.

Three people died as opposition supporters and police clashed outside polling stations, forcing election officials to postpone voting in parts of the country until Saturday.

The rerun is the latest twist in a long and increasingly chaotic political saga, which has polarised the country, and looks unlikely to end soon.

Before voting began, Raila Odinga, the opposition leader, called on supporters to stay at home, leaving polling stations in his strongholds almost empty, in stark contrast to the first election, which the supreme court annulled last month.

Voting was brisk in areas loyal to Kenyatta, though even here turnout appeared to be significantly lower than for the previous election in August.

“It is important to vote because the current problems are not helpful and we should finish this thing and go back to the routine,” said Peter Mwanda, a 32-year-old businessman, after voting in Roysambu, a neighbourhood in eastern Nairobi.

Kenyatta held out the prospect of negotiations with Odinga after casting his own vote.

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