11 August 2017

Kenya: America, UK Urge Politicians to Follow Law Not Threats

Nairobi — The American and UK governments have urged Kenyans to be patient as they wait for the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) to announce the final official results for the presidential election.

The US Department of State Spokesperson Heather Nauert issued a statement Thursday night saying the electoral body should be allowed to complete the ongoing tallying and validation process as required.

"We welcome the statements made by international and domestic missions observing the Kenyan elections, which have contributed to transparency, integrity and public confidence in the electoral process," she stated.

She urged all the aggrieved parties to follow the law in challenging the results and avoid making threats or statements that can ignite violence in the country.

"We urge all parties and their supporters to peacefully and patiently wait for the IEBC's announcement of the official results. The IEBC should be given an opportunity to complete its tallying," she said.

"We also encourage the IEBC to continue communicating freely with the Kenyan public and we welcome its commitment to fully investigate any allegations of fraud with the engagement of all election stakeholders."

Similar sentiments were expressed by the UK Minister for Africa Rory Stewart who called for patience and warned against sentiments that could destabilise the country.

"We call on all Kenyans and international partners to continue to work together in the spirit of peace, partnership and democracy over the coming hours and days, and to await the final outcome as determined by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission," he stated.

He urged all political parties and candidates to remember that Kenya and Kenyans matter more than any candidate, party or election, and to refrain from any actions or statements which could heighten tensions whilst the country awaits the vote outcome.

"Any disputes should be addressed through the established resolution mechanisms, in line with Kenya's constitution."

He assured that the UK stands with the people of Kenya "at this important moment in history" and looks forward to continuing to work together as friends and partners.

The US and the UK spoke on the day NASA presidential candidate Raila Odinga continued to exert pressure on the electoral body to declare him as winner of the presidential race.

But the IEBC Chairperson Wafula Chebukati has said he will not bow into pressure to declare Odinga president until the tallying exercise is completed.


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