Kenyans Need Reconciliation in Post-Election Era | Freedom House

Kenyans Need Reconciliation in Post-Election Era

Washington

Freedom House congratulates the Kenyan people for expressing their will in a peaceful and democratic election and in the process, demonstrating to the rest of the world Kenya's democratic resilience following the violent election-related upheaval of 2007-2008.  We urge the country's citizens to continue to reject political violence, and to remain vigilant and active in demanding accountable government from their elected leaders.

Freedom House also applauds outgoing Prime Minister Raila Odinga’s statesmanlike embrace of the Supreme Court’s verdict and calls upon him to continue urging his supporters to do the same and to refrain from violent protests that could undermine the fragile peace that has prevailed since the March 4 general election. By so doing, he will be leading the way in building public confidence in the nascent independent institutions under the new constitution.

We welcome President-elect Kenyatta's stated pledge to serve all Kenyans fairly and without discrimination. This will be critical to achieving national reconciliation and transcending the intense political and ethnic polarization that characterized the hard-fought election contest.  To do this, the president must commit himself to respecting and upholding the constitution, advancing democratic reforms by supporting the creation of effective governing institutions and securing the fundamental freedoms of all Kenyans.

Mr. Kenyatta's administration must honor Kenya’s international obligations, including matters related to international justice, and must ensure the independence of the judiciary and media as well as the ability of civil society to operate freely. He must also cooperate with the International Criminal Court and support the investigation of past and current human rights abuses. A democratic and just Kenya will not become a reality unless its leaders are politically and economically accountable to the people they represent.

Kenya is rated Partly Free in the 2013 edition of the Freedom in the World survey, Partly Free in the 2012 edition of the Freedom of the Press survey and Free in the 2012 edition of the Freedom of the Net survey.

To learn more about Kenya, visit:

Freedom in the World 2012: Kenya

Freedom of the Press 2012: Kenya

Freedom on the Net 2012: Kenya

Countries at the Crossroads 2012: Kenya

Blog: Kenya's Elections Promise More of the Same

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Freedom House is an independent watchdog organization that supports democratic change, monitors the status of freedom around the world, and advocates for democracy and human rights.

Join us on Facebook and Twitter (freedomhouse). Stay up to date with Freedom House’s latest news and events by signing up for our newsletter.