( AP ) - A top official with Kenya's main opposition party said Thursday's rally had been canceled and called on supporters to go home, while riot police fired tear gas and water cannons to beat back crowds of protesters.
"We are a peaceful people who do not want violence," said William Ruto, a top official with presidential candidate Raila Odinga's party. "That is why we are peacefully dispersing now."
Odinga had called the march to protest President Mwai Kibaki's re-election in the Dec. 27 vote, insisting the poll was a sham. The political dispute has degenerated into ethnic violence nationwide pitting Kibaki's influential Kikuyus against Odinga's Luos and other tribes.
Odinga had said the rally was meant to be peaceful, but the government banned the march.