Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga announces bid for presidency

By IndepthAfrica
In East Africa
Dec 22nd, 2012
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Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga speaks at a conference to review reforms Kenya is making, in Nairobi, Kenya, Dec. 2.  Khalil Senosi/AP

Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga speaks at a conference to review reforms Kenya is making, in Nairobi, Kenya, Dec. 2. Khalil Senosi/AP

NAIROBI — Kenyan Prime Minister Raila Odinga announced Saturday he would be running again for the presidency in the elections to be held in March next year.

“I commit myself to the people of Kenya and the Coalition for Reform and Democracy by accepting the nomination to be its presidential flagbearer,” said Odinga, who lost to current incumbent Mwai Kibaki in the December 2007 vote that triggered a wave of deadly unrest.

Odinga and his former rival, Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka, had announced earlier this month the formation of the Coalition to run in the March 4 elections.

Musyoka, who was also planning a tilt at the country’s top job, said on Saturday he would not be a candidate.

“I stand before you today to announce that I have put the interest of the country first… and shelved my personal presidential ambitions in favour of Prime Minister Raila Odinga.”

Then opposition leader Odinga had accused Kibaki of rigging his way to re-election following the 2007 polls.

Political riots after the election quickly degenerated into ethnic killings which left at least 1,100 people dead and displaced more than 600,000.

The violence, the worst since independence in 1963, shattered Kenya’s image as a beacon of stability in east Africa.AFP

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