The Kenyan election authorities have requested Zambia’s former president Rupiah Banda to reach out to Kenyan political leaders and advise them against issuing any statements that might plunge the country into chaos after Monday’s general elections.
The request was made by Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) Ahmed Isaack Hassan when President Banda, who is leader of the Carter Centre international election observer mission at the Kenyan elections, paid a courtesy call on the elections chief.
Mr Hassan said his commission had done all that it could to ensure the holding of free and fair elections and hoped that all political players would play their part in ensuring that peace is maintained both before and after the elections.
“We like to ask you, as former head of state, to appeal to the presidential candidates to avoid wild allegations of rigging. This could spark the problems we experienced after the 2007 elections. But so far, there’s no motivation for violence,” Mr Hassan said.
According to Kennedy Limwana, the deputy admistrative secretary in MR Banada’s office, the former president was accompanied to the IEBC offices by Dr John Stremlau the delegation co-leader and Carter Centre vice-president for peace programmes, Dr David Pottie, who is associate director of the Carter Centre’s democracy programme, and field office director Stephane Mondon.
The former Zambian head of State later held a meeting with the leaders of the election observer missions from the Commonwealth, European Union (EU), African Union (AU), the East African Community and the Great Lakes region.
The meeting, that was chaired by AU Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma included leader of the Commonwealth observer team and former Botswana President Festus Mogae, former Mozambiquan President and leader of the AU team Joaquim Chissano, and EU team leader Alojz Peterle.
Mr. Banda concluded his day’s programme with a meeting with Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Willy Mutunga who assured the Carter centre delegation that the Kenyan Judiciary had no option but to deliver efficiently in order to restore the confidence that was eroded in the 2007 elections.