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Former Kenyan leader, Mwai Kibaki is dead. Simplicity, betrayal, others, see what he’s remembered for

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Former Kenyan leader, Mwai Kibaki, renowned for a distinguished political career of simplicity and less confrontation, has died at the age of 90.

Kenya’s President, Uhuru Kenyatta, announced news of his death on Friday, the president described his passing as a sad day for the country and praised him as a great Kenyan and a statesman.

Although Kibaki ushered in economic reforms as Kenya’s president, his political legacy is however threatened by the deadly post-election violence that followed his second presidential term

Kibali, who was a British-educated economist, Kibaki’s became president after four decades as a lawmaker, government minister, and then vice president to his predecessor, Daniel arap Moi.

Kibaki had a lot of political adventures that surrounded him. For instance, Raila Odinga, one of NARC’s leaders at one point, accused Kibaki of violating a secret, pre-election pact that guaranteed Odinga would become prime minister.

Instead, Kibaki appointed Odinga minister for roads, angering his base and sowing the seeds for a bitter showdown between the two that was to spill into violence at the next election in 2007, causing the deaths of 1,250 people.

Kibaki also angered voters by failing to tackle widespread corruption, and his ministers embraced the same corrupt businessmen who had flourished under Moi.

British High Commissioner Edward Clay memorably summed up donors’ view of government graft in a 2004 speech: “Their gluttony causes them to vomit all over our shoes.”

In the heady first days of his administration, Kibaki had appointed John Githongo, a prominent activist, as his anti-graft czar. But Githongo fled to Britain in 2005 after uncovering a multi-million dollar passport printing scam involving senior cabinet ministers. He later became a vociferous critic.

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Senegalese opposition condemns President Sall’s ‘slow’ election date announcement

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The opposition presidential contenders in Senegal have claimed that the government is taking too long to announce a new date for the poll, following a court ruling that declared a 10-month postponement to be illegal.

This occurs just a few days after President Macky Sall pledged to comply with the Constitutional Council’s position that the election be held as soon as feasible following the parliament’s resolution to reschedule the election—which was initially set for February 25—was overruled by the court.

The situation in one of the more stable democracies in coup-hit West Africa led to violent public protests and threats of authoritarian overreach, and Sall came under intense pressure both domestically and internationally to accept the council’s decision.

However, no new date has been announced, which has angered opposition candidates who want the election to happen before Sall’s term expires on April 2.

In a joint statement released late on Tuesday, sixteen out of the nineteen presidential candidates bemoaned the “inexplicable slowness” with which the council’s decision was implemented.

It was their contention that Sall’s tardy return to electoral duty demonstrated his reluctance to initiate a process that would result in a transfer of power. A request for response from the presidency was not answered.

During a news conference on Tuesday, Justice Minister Aïssata Tall Sall said that there was room for discussion over the expiration of Sall’s mandate on April 2.

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South Africa wants Israel’s ‘occupation’ of Palestinian territories declared illegal

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South Africa is back at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) over Israel’s role in the ongoing Hamas war. On Tuesday, Johannesburg asked the World Court to issue a non-binding legal opinion that the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories is illegal.

South Africa argued that the proclamation would help efforts to reach a settlement as its representative opened the second day of hearings at the court in the Hague.

Vusimuzi Madonsela, South Africa’s ambassador to the Netherlands told the judges that “a clear legal characterization of the nature of Israel’s regime over the Palestinian people can only assist in remedying the ongoing delay and achieving a just settlement.”

Palestinian delegates asked the U.N.’s top court on Monday to declare Israel’s occupation of their territory illegal, adding that the advisory opinion of the court might help bring about a durable peace and a two-state solution.

Israel sent a written statement claiming that an advisory opinion would be detrimental to reaching a negotiated settlement with the Palestinians, despite not being present at the hearings.

The most recent wave of violence in Gaza, which was sparked by Hamas’s attacks on Israel on October 7, has exacerbated the region’s long-standing grievances and harmed attempts to find a peaceful solution.

The ICJ’s fifteen-member panel was tasked with “occupation, settlement and annexation … including measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem, and from its adoption of related discriminatory legislation and measures.”

It is anticipated that the judges will take about half a year to respond to the request, which also asks them to evaluate the implications of the occupation’s legal standing.

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