Written by Ashton Snyder on
 June 26, 2024

Auma Obama Tear-Gassed During Kenyan Protests

The "7 Days of Rage" protests in Kenya against a new tax hike have intensified, and notable figures like Auma Obama, the half-sister of former President Barack Obama, have been caught in the turmoil.

The protests, driven by the recent Finance Bill 2024, have led to fatalities and numerous injuries, drawing significant international attention and appeals to cease the violence.

According to The Root, protests in Kenya have erupted following the passage of the Finance Bill 2024, leading to widespread unrest across the nation. Thousands of demonstrators have gathered to express their dissatisfaction with the tax hike, culminating in violent clashes and significant destruction.

Protestors Clash with Police Over Finance Bill

The demonstrations, which have been ongoing for several days, reached a critical point when Auma Obama was teargassed during a protest. Former President Barack Obama's half-sister joined the demonstrators to support their cause and experienced the intense response from law enforcement firsthand.

Live footage on CNN showed Auma Obama among the protestors when they were dispersed with tear gas by the police. Her presence and subsequent teargassing have highlighted the severity of the government's crackdown on the protests.

During an interview attempt by CNN anchor Larry Madowo, Auma Obama and other protestors were forced to relocate after being teargassed. This incident has intensified the scrutiny of the Kenyan government's handling of the protests.

Escalating Violence and International Attention

As of Tuesday, reports indicate that five individuals have died and over 30 have been injured in the protests. The Kenya Human Rights Commission has issued a plea to President William Ruto to halt the violence against protestors, emphasizing the need for a peaceful resolution.

The Finance Bill 2024, which has exacerbated the already high levels of frustration over inflation and the cost of living, has been the main catalyst for these protests. The bill's passage has sparked a nationwide outcry, with citizens demanding that the government address their economic grievances.

Auma Obama later confirmed on X/Twitter that she was safe, mentioning that her half-brother, Barack Obama, had checked in on her well-being. This personal connection to a high-profile international figure has brought additional global attention to the situation in Kenya.

Calls for Change Amidst Ongoing Unrest

Auma Obama expressed her solidarity with the young demonstrators, emphasizing the importance of their voices in a video aired by CNN. Her participation underscores the widespread discontent among Kenyans, particularly the youth, who feel the brunt of economic pressures.

I am here because look at what’s happening, young Kenyans are demonstrating for their rights. They’re demonstrating with flags and banners, I can’t even see anymore. We are being tear-gassed.

The protests have led to significant property damage, including the setting of a blaze in part of Kenya's parliament building. This act of defiance illustrates the depth of frustration felt by the protestors towards the government's policies.

Conclusion

The "7 Days of Rage" protests in Kenya have highlighted deep-seated frustrations over economic policies and government actions. Auma Obama's involvement and the subsequent teargassing incident have brought international attention to the plight of the protestors. The violence has resulted in fatalities and injuries, prompting calls for President William Ruto to end the crackdown on demonstrators. As the protests continue, the world watches to see how Kenya will navigate this turbulent period and address the underlying issues. The situation remains fluid, with significant implications for the country's future stability.

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About Ashton Snyder

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