Kenya’s National Cohesion and Integration
Commission chairman Mzalendo Kibunjia
The cohesion watchdog has urged political parties to include peace building in their manifestos.
National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) chairman Mzalendo Kibunjia further told parties to ensure peace prevails during the next General Election.
Speaking when he presided over a fundraising dinner for the National Vision Party (NVP) at the Panafric Hotel in Nairobi on Wednesday night, Dr Kibunjia said: “I am hoping one of the chapters on political parties manifestos will have a chapter on peace and security ahead of the elections.”
"We should break the jinx of violence every election year since 1992 by providing an environment of peace. Political parties, institutions and Kenyans at large must ensure the environment is safe. NVP please also help us deliver a correct environment for free and fair elections,” Dr Kibunjia said.
Accompanied by NVP party leader Nicholas Biwott and vice-chairperson Benta Akinyi Opande, Dr Kibunjia praised the party its national outlook.
“This is what I am supposed to be looking for in all institutions whether government, private or political party. NVP should be congratulated for its national outlook,” Dr Kibunjia said.
He also defended his move to officiate at a political party affair yet he leads a public institution for all Kenyans.
“Some are also asking why I came to speak in a party affair. I was delighted when I was invited by honourable Biwott because the future of this country do not belong to individuals but political parties which we accepted by entrenching it in constitution. The era of one man deciding or one woman deciding is long gone. We must revamp and support parties,” Dr Kibunjia said.
Dr Kibunjia called for proper preparation of the next elections in terms of logistics including voter registration.
“If the environment is poisoned or insecure the electoral body will not deliver,” he said.
Dr Kibunjia said the polls in which six seats will be contested including the presidency, will be the largest in Africa.
"Imagine each of the seats attracting 10 candidates as is with the presidency, 60 politicians will be running around the country trying to be different from each other. This is why parties should not incite Kenyans. They should avoid racism, ethnicity and regionalism,” Dr Kibunjia said, adding that NCIC will be extra vigilant.
He said the issues being championed by groups like Mombasa Republic Council (MRC ) over land and bad roads, which are blamed on the central government will be addressed by devolution “as government is coming to a town near you".
He said dominant communities should share seats with minorities at county governments for inclusivity and peace.
Saying fundraising dinners are allowed by the Political Parties Act, Mr Biwott said his party stands for rule of law, national cohesion, peace, justice and equality, respect of all rights and liberties that are clearly enshrined in the Constitution.
Mr Biwott said NVP shares values advocated by NCIC, a thing , he said should be supported by all peace loving Kenyans for development.
Ms Opande attributed inequality in distribution of resources to emergency of outlawed groups like MRC.
“If we get equality right, the country will speak with one voice. Check for example, Nyanza is biggest producer of fish but that is not where the largest fish factory is. That is why some people say Pwani si Kenya (Coast is not Kenya),” Ms Opande said.