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Kenya to hold elections in March 2013

They will be the first presidential and parliamentary elections held under the new constitution that was drafted after a disputed poll in 2007. Violence surrounding the conflict killed over 1,000.

kenya elections 2013 constitutionEnlarge
Kenya's President Mwai Kibaki [C] smiles after being handed the signed constitution document by Attorney General, Amos Wako [R] on August 27, 2010 as Chief of General Staff, CGS, General, Jeremiah Kianga [L] looks on during the promulgation ceremony for Kenya's new constitution in the capital, Nairobi. (Tony Karumba/AFP/Getty Images)

Kenya has set the date of March 4, 2013 for their next presidential elections, Al Jazeera reports

Kenya's 2007 elections were contested and marred by violence. 1,220 people were killed in the violence stemming from the disputed elections. The country promulgated a new constitution in 2010, and next year's elections will be the first under the new rules.

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A new constitutional court ruled that elections must be held within 60 days before parliament's term ends. It ends the middle of next January. Alternately a snap election can be called if President Mwai Kibaki and prime minister Railia Odinga sign an agreement dissolving their coalition government.

The Associated Press reported that Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission chairman Isaac Hassan said the announcement was to "remove the uncertainty, anxiety and suspence surrounding this date."

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There was "confusion" about the date of the election when constitutional courts interpreted the new constitution differently.

Agence France Presse wrote that the announcement ended "weeks of heated exchanges between rival politicians."

http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/regions/africa/kenya/120317/kenya-hold-elections-march-2013