Candidates cleared for Kenya's presidential election

Kenya's electoral body chairman Isaack Hassan, verifies papers during the party presidential nominations exercise at Kenyatta International Conference Centre in Nairobi, January 29th, 2013. He has told a Washington audience that there is still resentment and anger over election results. STEPHEN MUDIARI | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

This week, all eight Kenyan presidential aspirants have been cleared by the election body IEBC to vie for the top seat on March 4.

The IEBC set apart two days - Tuesday and Wednesday - in which the candidates could submit their nomination papers and other documents in order to qualify to vie for the post.

The aspirants were required to submit their national identity card, degree certificate, two passport size photographs, party nomination certificate, wealth declaration forms and a banker’s cheque of $2,281 - half of that in case of women, where there is only one in the race: Martha Karua.

They also took an oath showing they bore no allegiance to a foreign state; proof that they were registered voters; a list of 2,000 voters from at least 24 counties backing their bid; and a campaign schedule for the remaining weeks to the election.

A ninth candidate, Chris Matata, was disqualified for failure to keep time.

With the submissions the country has entered into an aggressive campaign mode as the general elections draw close.

Prime Minister Raila Odinga earlier today submitted his nomination papers to the chairman of the election body Issack Hassan accompanied by his running mate Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka.

The Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (Cord) alliance presidential candidate left the Kenyatta International Conference Centre with his entourage and proceeded to nearby Uhuru Park to formally launch his campaign.

The Premier who is hopeful that his third attempt to get into State House will be successful promised that the Cord coalition would conduct peaceful and issue-based campaigns.

The Hague

IEBC chairman and his commission had earlier on cleared Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta and his running mate William Ruto to vie for the same come the general elections.

The duo who lead the Jubilee Alliance are facing trial at the International Criminal Court in The Hague for crimes against humanity.
Ruto and Kenyatta are among the four Kenyans indicted by the ICC over the 2007/ 2008 post-election violence.

Mr Hassan declared that the deputy prime minister had been validly nominated and was eligible to run for the presidency.

Mr Kenyatta has on several occasions reiterated that the cases at The Hague will in no way affect his ability to lead the country.

On Tuesday, the only female aspirant - Ms Karua - led the presidential hopefuls in seeking the clearance from IEBC.

She promised to improve the living standards in the country and lower the cost of living and ensure the country reaches its full potential.

Deputy Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi of the Amani alliance was cleared to join the fight to succeed President Mwai Kibaki.

He embarked on his campaigns immediately after with the promise of creating jobs and tackling crime.

Planning and National Development assistant minister Peter Kenneth of the Eagle alliance also submitted his papers and received the go ahead from the electoral body.

Veteran lawyer Paul Muite, former permanent secretary Prof James ole Kiyiapi, and a former high school teacher, Mohammed Abduba Dida, also received IEBC’s approval to contest.

At the same time a special committee within the Office of the President has said it will make public on Thursday a final report on how power will be transferred from President Kibaki to the President-elect after the general election.

Details to be released will include the security team manning the national tallying centre and the possibility of a runoff.

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