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Carter Center Congratulates Kenyan Voters on Peaceful Election, Urges Patience While Results Processed

CONTACT: In Atlanta, Deborah Hakes 1 404-420-5124; In Nairobi, Stéphane Mondon +254 738 245 781

Read the full preliminary statement (PDF) >

The Carter Center finds that Kenya's polls were well-conducted in a peaceful environment. Voter turnout appears to have been high. The Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission has made important commitments to improve the transparency of the counting and tabulation of votes. Although partial provisional results are available, the full tabulation of results is ongoing.

The Center regrets the security incident at the coast on the eve of election day, which led to the unfortunate loss of lives including the death of an Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission agent during the course of his duties. Their extreme sacrifice is a constant reminder of the importance of peace and security in the conduct of democratic elections.

The Center has observed a high number of rejected votes, and appeals to the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission and other stakeholders to address this in the short term.

At this stage, with the tabulation of final results still underway, it is too early to provide an overall assessment of the electoral process. Carter Center observers will continue to observe the tabulation process, dispute resolution, and the post-election environment.

In the meantime, political parties and their leaders should refrain from releasing one sided figures or making inflammatory statements. Instead we advise them to cooperate with the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission and appeal to their supporters to remain calm, refraining from any action that may lead to compromising security of the elections in general and the Kenyan people in particular.

The Center encourages political parties and candidates to continue to exercise patience as the results process continues and to bring any complaints they may have to the appropriate legal channels.

The Center launched its election observation mission in Kenya in January 2013 with the deployment of 14 long-term observers from 11 countries. They were joined by an additional 38 short-term observers from 19 countries to observe voting and counting. The mission was led by former Zambia President Rupiah Banda and Carter Center Vice President for Peace Programs Dr. John Stremlau. On election day, Carter Center observers visited 265 polling stations in 34 counties.

The Carter Center is in Kenya at the invitation of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission and will provide an impartial and independent assessment of the electoral process to be made available to Kenyan citizens and the international community through periodic public statements. The Center makes its assessment based on Kenya's legal framework and its obligations for democratic elections contained in regional and international treaties. The Center's observation mission is conducted in accordance with the Declaration of Principles for International Election Observation and all its observers have signed the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission Code of Conduct for Election Observers.1 The Carter Center has observed 94 elections in 37 countries, including the 2002 elections in Kenya.

This statement is preliminary; a final report will be published in the coming months following the conclusion of the electoral process. Read the full preliminary statement (PDF) >


"Waging Peace. Fighting Disease. Building Hope."
A not-for-profit, nongovernmental organization, The Carter Center has helped to improve life for people in more than 70 countries by resolving conflicts; advancing democracy, human rights, and economic opportunity; preventing diseases; improving mental health care; and teaching farmers in developing nations to increase crop production. The Carter Center was founded in 1982 by former U.S. President Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rosalynn, in partnership with Emory University, to advance peace and health worldwide.

View slideshow: Carter Center Observes Kenya's Election on March 4 >>

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