Kenya polls - Zambia’s former president, Rupiah Banda, says Kenyans have made adequate preparations to guarantee the organization of peaceful and credible elections that all Africans can be proud of.
The former president cited, among other factors, the interventions that have put in place by the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA), Kenya chapter, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission, the Kenyatta University School of Law and the Kenyan Judiciary Working Committee on Election Preparations.
Banda is due to leave for Kenya on Friday where he will lead a 50-person Carter Centre international observer mission for next week’s presidential and parliamentary elections in that country.
Banda said that the Kenyan elections are important not only because of the spectre of violence that the 2007 polls left but also that they will be Africa’s first in the year 2013.
“It will be important that the Kenyan elections are seen to be credible, transparent and democratic in every respect. That way, all other elections on the continent can follow the same path,” President Banda said in a statement Tuesday on the elections set for 4 March.
The former Zambian president will travel to Kenya at the invitation of former US President and Carter Centre chairman, Jimmy Carter, who requested him to lead the observation team to the East African country.
Carter is hopeful that the former Zambian leader’s “experience, knowledge and political leadership would be invaluable to the mission”.
Banda has previously headed the Carter Centre missions to presidential and parliamentary elections in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Sierra Leone. He has also overseen National Assembly elections in the Royal Kingdom of Lesotho under the Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa.