Kerry, EU MPs upbeat on seamless Kenya poll

August 7, 2017 (2 weeks ago) 4:25 pm
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Kerry, who led The Carter Centre observation mission delegation in paying a courtesy call on Chief Justice David Maraga at the Supreme Court on Monday, said the speedy resolution of nomination disputes boosted the credibility of the upcoming polls/MUTHONI NJUKI

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Aug 7 – Former top United States diplomat John Kerry has lauded the Judiciary for expediting election disputes resolution ahead of Tuesday’s General Election.

Kerry, who led The Carter Centre observation mission delegation in paying a courtesy call on Chief Justice David Maraga at the Supreme Court on Monday, said the speedy resolution of nomination disputes boosted the credibility of the upcoming polls.

“I want to express our admiration for the efforts of the judicial branch of the Government of Kenya that has done so much work in order to resolve disputes and provide a legal process that can give confidence in the vote tomorrow (Tuesday),” Kerry said in company of former Senegalese Prime Minister and Minister of Justice Aminata Touré shortly after they met Maraga.

The former US Secretary of State assured that the observation mission will do its best to ensure the polls are conducted in a manner that inspires confidence among the electorate urging Kenyans to maintain peace.

“In the end, it is up to Kenyans to make the choice and it is up to the people of Kenya and the leadership here to provide an atmosphere within which this is a peaceful process,” the lead monitor of the lobby established by former US President Jimmy Carter in 1982 urged.

The seasoned diplomat said the vigorous manner with which the courts have handled cases arising from party primaries conducted in April was a clear demonstration that it remained ready, able and willing to handle post-election disputes filed before it.

While making her remarks, Touré urged for peace, describing the justice system in Kenya as commendable in the continent.

Acknowledging the importance of the August 8 vote, Touré said the Africa is optimistic that the elections will be peaceful and that the country will once again prove to be a beacon of democracy and stability.

“We’re sure that Tuesday will be a good opportunity to show that the Kenyan democracy is active and that people can go the vote peacefully and demonstrate that you’ve reached a level of democracy that will make us proud,” she pointed out.

Maraga on his part reiterated once again the resolve by the Judiciary to conclude all election-related petitions within timelines stipulated in the law.

Earlier on Monday, the top judge received a team of seven members of the European Parliament led by David McAllister, the chair of EU parliament’s Committee on Foreign Affairs.

Following the meeting, McAllister told Capital FM News that his team will join about 120 long-term observers from the EU in various parts of the country to monitor the polls.

“Kenya is an anchor of stability in this part of the world and I wish all candidates success in this democratic process. We hope and pray for free, fair and peaceful elections in this country,” he said.

“The EU has a long tradition of supporting partner countries in democracy and conducting good elections. We hope that this wonderful and great country Kenya will have a good future,” McAllister stated.

He said it is critical that politicians accept the outcome of a democratic process, adding that a democratic process has those who win and those who lose at the end.

McAllister said democracy is a complex process whose outcome may not please all parties but should be binding to all.

“Democracy means you win and you lose. That is our main message – whatever happens, let us accept the results and remain peaceful,” he said.

McAllister also paid a visit to Parliament buildings where he, together with his delegation, spoke to National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi.

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