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First Minister Humza Yousaf and his wife Nadia El-Nakla leaving Bute House, the official residence of First Minister, after he announced that he will resign as SNP leader and Scotland's First Minister, avoiding having to face a no confidence vote in his leadership. Mr Yousaf's premiership has been hanging by a thread since he ended the Bute House Agreement with the Scottish Greens last week. Picture date: Monday April 29, 2024

PA via Reuters

Turmoil in Scotland as first minister resigns

On Monday, Humza Yousaf, Scotland’s first minister and leader of the Scottish National Party, announced he would resign following a controversial move last week to end the SNP’s power-sharing agreement with the Scottish Green Party. Once Yousaf’sresignation is formalized, Scotland will need a new first minister within 28 days.

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Supporters of Kenyan opposition leader Raila Odinga throw stones at riot cops in Nairobi.

REUTERS/John Muchucha

What We’re Watching: Kenyan protest politics, twice the Ma in China, SNP names new leader

Anti-government protests escalate in Kenya

On Monday, hundreds of protesters stormed a controversial farm owned by Kenya’s former President Uhuru Kenyatta. The rioters stole livestock, cut down trees, and then set the land on fire.

The motive likely has something to do with the ongoing protests against the government of President William Ruto captained by opposition leader Raila Odinga, who narrowly lost the 2022 election to Ruto, Kenyatta’s ex-VP. (The members of this political threesome have all worked with each other in the past in Kenya, where elite business and politics are about as tight as can be.)

This behavior is nothing new for Odinga. While the protests are outwardly about the rising cost of living, Eurasia Group analyst Connor Vasey says that the opposition is just “taking his politics to the streets,” using inflation and other grievances as a “lightning rod to ensure turnout”. And while he is officially trying to overturn Ruto’s victory, Vasey believes that what Odinga really wants is an unofficial executive role in government.

From here, we can expect a test of political willpower. Odinga is threatening more rallies, while Ruto says he’ll continue to deploy the security forces against the protesters. The president hopes that if his rival doesn’t get his political concessions soon, popular support for his mobilization will subside.

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