The Star (Nairobi)

6 November 2012

Kenya: Ruto Receives Peace Torch, Calls for Calm in Polls

Photo: Rick Bajornas/UN Photo
President Mwai Kibaki (file photo).

Eldoret North MP William Ruto has assured Kenyans that peace will prevail in the Rift Valley region during the general election. He asked Kenyans to ensure there is a peaceful hand over of power once President Kibaki retires.

The URP presidential aspirant wants all the presidential aspirants to commit themselves to preaching peace ahead of the March 4, 2013 elections. "We should all work for a better country because the future generations are looking on us to hand them a safe country," said Ruto.

Ruto said yesterday he will make sure he preaches peace in all his campaigns in Rift Valley and vowed that the region will not experience any violence ahead of the general election.

Rift Valley region was one of the badly affected areas after the 2007 general election. He told Kenyans not allow leaders to be balkanise and divide them on tribal lines.

"We have decided that never again shall we go through what happened last time. It is only a fool who cannot learn from past mistakes," said Ruto. He said the current leaders should ensure they bequeath peace to the next generation.

Ruto spoke at Uasin Gishu Primary School in Eldoret town when he received a peace torch that is going round the counties ahead of the elections. He was accompanied by minister Chirau Ali Makwere and MPs Adan Duale, Boaz Kaino and Gideon Konchela among others.

URP chairman Francis ole Kaparo led the party leaders in declaring that they will preach peace during the campaigns. Present also was Dorene Ruto from the Daima Initiative. She said schools in the area had been declared peace zones ahead of the polls.

The peace torch is the Daima Initiative's idea and the Ministry of Education. It is aimed at ensuring Kenyans embrace peace in the lead up to the election.

The peace torch was lit by President Kibaki during the National Peace Conference at Bomas of Kenya and has been going round the country since then.

Ruto said presidential aspirants should also concentrate of selling policies that will enhance development in the country after the next general elections.

URP parliamentary aspirants Caleb Kostanyi (Soy), Oscar Sudi (Kapsaret) and Vesca Kangogo who is vying for governors position in Uasin Gishu were also present and vowed to preach peace in the region.

Officials from the Daima initiative said would intensify campaigns to have all leaders commit themselves to peaceful election campaigns.

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