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The African Elections Project :  your authoritative African Elections Information and Knowledge online portal, covering elections across the continent

Projecto Eleições Africanas: seu portal autorizado para informação e conhecimento sobre Eleições Africanas. Cobrindo eleições por toda Áfrca.

Le projet sur les elections en Afrique: votre portail exclusif et credible d'information et de connaissance en ligne, qui couvre les élections à travers le continent
Date:12 Mar 2013
AU Eminent Personalities Call for Calm in Kenya

Africa Union panel that mediated Kenya's 2007 post election violence said on Saturday it hopes the East African nation would overcome huge challenges ahead and emerge stronger, more stable and secure nation.

The African Union Panel of Eminent Persons led by Kofi Annan said the coming weeks will be a test of the strength of Kenya's democracy, its institutions, its Constitution and its commitment to the rule of law. Annan said after one of the darkest episodes in the country's recent history, following the 2007 elections, the East African nation is once again on a positive path.

He said Kenyans went to the polls peaceful five days ago with optimism with an overriding desire to exercise their democratic right to vote in their leaders who will steer the country forward.

"The Kenyan people have been equally patient as they awaited the announcement of the official results of the presidential race. I applaud the calm they have displayed, despite the delays and difficulties experienced in the transmission and release of the results," he said.

The March 4 polls were the very first to be held since the 2007/ 2008 post election violence, when, within a 7 week period following the polls, and as a direct consequence of the contested results, thousands of civilians were victims of serious crimes, including killings, sexual and gender based violence, forced internal displacements, destruction of properties.

The elections were important also because these elections were the very first to be organised under Kenya's 2010 Constitution, which provides for safeguards against unfair, insecure, corrupted, non transparent or inefficiently administrated elections.

The former UN secretary-general welcomed the commitment of the presidential candidates and their parties to maintain the peace by urging restraint amongst their supporters. He lauded the positive role that has been played by the media, in educating the public, promoting peace and exercising good judgment in their elections coverage.

Annan who mediated the protracted negotiations that culminated in the formation of the coalition government in Kenya said the implementation of the 2010 Constitution has taken another giant leap forward as the system of devolved government begins to enter into force.

He congratulated all those who will soon be taking up their elective posts and wish them well as they begin to serve their respective constituencies.

"In equal measure, I applaud the manner in which those unsuccessful candidates, including other presidential candidates, have accepted the results. Just as the political leadership of the country has continued to urge calm and restraint, I reiterate my appeal to the Kenyan people to remain peaceful and composed," he said.


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