A new era in Kenyan politics? Exerpts from the president’s speech & more

Quotes (see below)musyoka-kibaki-odinga.jpg

  1. Excerpts from President Kibaki’s speech to Parliament Yesterday (Standard). The full text of the speech can be found here.
  2. Quotes from from other stories: (Standard) (NYTimes)
  3. Generation Kenya website:

[I find it interesting that all three presidential candidates, from opposing parties, will now occupy the top three posts in the country in the same government.]

Other articles of interest:

  1. US Backs the deal with $25 Million
  2. Mungiki (Nation editorial – worth the read; very short); Standard articles – promised crackdown, recent protest & some background. “It is time the authorities recognised the Mungiki for what they are: A highly-organised, militarised outfit of mainly jobless youths who have very little to lose, and who are, therefore, a complete danger to society.”
  3. Ongoing ethnic conflict near Mt. Elgon

Excerpts from President Kibaki’s speech to Parliament Yesterday (Standard).

. . . I also appeal to you all to be guided by a strong sense of national unity, which must over-ride partisan considerations. I see this event as an important turning point in our politics. . . We need to cultivate this spirit of quiet consultation to achieve the next steps on the agenda . . . It should be about addressing the daily challenges that obstruct our people from achieving their dreams. Of immediate concern, therefore, are the thousands of people living in dehumanising conditions in makeshift camps due to the violence.

. . . Kenyans are keen to see an end to partisan bickering. They want pragmatic solutions, not ideological posturing. They want their leaders to place the country above party and individual interests. In this respect, I am aware that we contested the last General Election on the platform of our respective party manifestos. Each party had its own priorities and approaches. Nevertheless, our manifestos are united in the over-riding agenda of building a democratic land of opportunities for all.

. . . The quest for development and prosperity cannot be achieved without lasting peace. Our duty is to pursue a serious policy of national healing and reconciliation aimed at creating a society that is at peace with itself. Let us rally Kenyans behind one another as one people with a common destiny. Let us encourage Kenyans to appreciate and embrace our diversity and live as brothers and sisters.

In conclusion, I appeal to leaders and Kenyans in general, to draw lessons from the events of the past few weeks and resolve that never again will Kenyans rise up against each other.

I urge all of us to look to the future with hope and courage.

Standard Article: “Crisis a turning point for Kenya

“The events of the last two months have offered us an opportunity to look inwards and fully comprehend both weaknesses and threats on one hand and the strengths and opportunities we have as a nation”. Kenyans, said the President, preferred peace over conflict, prosperity over desolation, unity over discord, and justice over injustice. “That is why on February 28, 2008, I and Honorable Raila Odinga accepted and signed the National Accord because our people had spoken clearly that they wanted one Kenya, in which they lived in peace, justice and harmony,” said Kibaki.

He added: “I believe Honorable Members will agree that the accord is a victory for all Kenyans, laying the foundation for peace and stability in our country”.
– President Kibaki

“The circumstances are fundamentally different. There is genuine reason to make the pact work. In the past, a clique made it impossible but things have changed. Now, there is need for me to work directly with Kibaki since it is embedded in the pact. I think there is sufficient goodwill. I know there is determination from Kibaki to make it work”.
– “Prime Minister designate” Raila Odinga

Conspicuously absent from the event was First Lady Lucy Kibaki, whose seat remained vacant.

NYTimes: Kenyan Parliament opens on a theme of unity

“If Parliament descends into anarchy,the Kenyan nation will not just sink, it will drown.” – Kenneth Marende, Parliament Speaker

Generation Kenya website:

Generation Kenya plans to profile, in fine art photographic portraits and superbly written text, the lives and accomplishments of Kenyans born since 1963 – the year of Independence.

“The project will showcase our achievements, our aspirations, our struggles, our challenges: and, always, our triumphs. It is about our stories: told by our images: seen by ourselves,” said Dr Wambui Mwangi [project manager]. “It is We Kenyans: for us, by us.”

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