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Haki Africa and partners urge for peaceful campaigns

Civil society groups and other elections stakeholders have raised concern over the rising cases of elections violence and called on the youth to avoid being used to cause chaos.

Haki Africa in partnership with National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC), Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC), United Nation Human Rights Commission (UNHCR) and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) met to address issues raised by the youth regarding the upcoming elections.

The issues being addressed were raised from youths from the Coastal, Rift valley and North Eastern regions of Kenya.

Speaking during the event held at Clarion Hotel in Nairobi on Monday, Haki Africa Executive Director Hussein Khalid addressed matters on increased political violence, political incitement, misuse of the youths and women and also misuse of the social media.

“The issue of political violence is a major concern and if action is not taken now, then our country is not headed in the right direction,” said Khalid. He commended the Ministry of Interior for addressing security issues in Marsabit, Mombasa and Nakuru counties.

“Unfortunately, we are seeing politicians increasingly making inflammatory statements against each other, other political opponents and also different communities,” said Khalid.

Khalid urged the youth to avoid politicians who want to engage them in political violence and incitement which always leads to serious injuries, deaths and looting.

He further condemned those using the social media during this election campaign period to malign, defame and cause unnecessary tension amongst the communities.

The IEBC Nairobi County deputy returning officer Antony Mahui at the same time noted that the Commission is prepared for the coming election and promised Kenyans a free, fair and credible election.

Mahui condemned politicians who are fueling political violence in the country urging them to uphold peace during this electioneering period.

“There is a problem with our politicians who are inciting the youths leading to increased displaced voters thus compromising on the leadership of affected areas,” said Mahui.

He commended Haki Africa for the great work they are doing and urged them to involve the public in civic education before, during and after the election period.

By Jedida Barasa and Sammy Macharia

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