, KIGALI, Rwanda May 22 – Rwanda is also preparing for peaceful elections in August this year, which will be held the same week with Kenya.
Rwanda goes to the polls on August 4 while those of Kenya are scheduled four days later on August 8.
The Rwandan government has prepared a raft of activities aimed at peace-building ahead of the elections, including the Kigali International Peace Marathon held yesterday where First Lady Margaret Kenyatta and her Rwandan Counterpart Jeanette Kagame ran the 7-km special non-competition ‘run for peace” race.
The peace marathon is an annual event organized on the 3rd Sunday of May every year during the hundred days of commemoration of the 1994 Genocide against some targeted populations to contribute to the journey of peace building process in Rwanda and abroad.
A total of 5879 athletes, including 517 Kenyans, women, the disabled and children took part in the peace marathon that incorporated three events-the 42 km race, the 21km half marathon and the ‘ran for peace’ event.
Other activities to promote peace in Rwanda include the Relay peace torch that was lit overnight on Sunday at Amahoro National Stadium. Other peace building activities are spread between April 7 to July 3 ahead of the country’s Liberation Day on July 4.
In Kenya President Kenyatta, who is seeking re-election for his second, five-year term, is at the forefront calling on Kenyans to maintain peace during and after the elections.
Other elections that are keenly being watched in Africa include those of Angola on August 7, Liberia on October 10 and those of the Democratic Republic of Congo whose specific date in the year has not been set.