News / Africa

    Kenyan Presidential Candidates Hammered on Corruption at Debate

    Kenyan Presidential Candidates Make Final Pushi
    X
    February 26, 2013 12:48 PM
    With just under a week to go before Kenya’s presidential election, candidates are making their final efforts to court voters. VOA East Africa Correspondent Gabe Joselow reports on the state of the race to decide Kenya’s political future.
    Gabe Joselow
    Kenya’s presidential candidates argued over the economy, corruption and foreign policy at the second and final presidential debate Monday in Nairobi.  The candidates came out aggressively with just a week to go before the vote.

    Eight presidential candidates made their case to the Kenyan people before the March 4 vote and took swipes at each other in the process.

    The moderators stayed mostly out of the way while the candidates attacked each other on corruption and land.

    Prime Minister Raila Odinga rejected allegations that he protected members of the health ministry suspected of involvement in the questionable distribution of money from a National Hospital Insurance Fund.

    “There has still been no concrete evidence provided to show there has been any kind of wrongdoing in the ministry financially," said Odinga. "There’s just been wild allegations and claims.”

    Amani coalition candidate Musalia Mudavadi was attacked for his alleged role in a shady land deal involving a Nairobi cemetery.  Paul Muite, founder of the Safina party, was hammered over the Goldenberg scandal which defrauded the government out of billions of dollars in the early 1990s.

    Outsider candidate Mohammed Dida, who has earned the most laughs from debate audiences for his bizarre analogies, delivered the line of the night.

    “Thank you for your sincerity, pertaining [to] your questions on integrity and leadership," said Dida. "But did you expect a thief to tell you ‘I’ve stolen’?”

    Jubilee candidate Uhuru Kenyatta, one of the richest men in Kenya and the son of the country's first president, was hit hard on the question of land reform.

    The moderator, Joe Ageyo, asked Kenyatta how he would tackle the land issue as someone who, as Ageyo put it, owns “half of Kenya.”

    “First and foremost, this issue of land is a very emotive issue in Kenya, and unfortunately the manner in which it has been handled has not been very professional or a manner that is really seeking to find solutions," said Kenyatta.

    Kenyatta said his party is putting its faith in the newly created Land Commission, an independent body established by the new constitution to resolve land disputes.

    Kenyatta initially had declined to participate in the debate after facing tough questioning about his indictment at the International Criminal Court for crimes committed during the violence that followed the last election in 2007.

    Deputy Prime Minister Kenyatta and Prime Minister Odinga are the frontrunners in this year's presidential race and are virtually tied for support, according to recent opinion polls.

    You May Like

    New EU Asylum Rules Could Boost Rightists

    New regulations will seek to correct EU failures in dealing with migrant crisis, most notably inability to get member states to absorb a total of 160,000 refugees

    More Political Turmoil Likely in Iraq as Iran Waits in the Wings

    Analysts warn that Tehran, even though it may not be engineering the Sadrist protests in Baghdad, is seeking to leverage its influence on its neighbor

    Goodbye Ketchup, Hello Sriracha!

    How immigrants are triggering a great transformation in American cuisine

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    Tensions Rising Ahead of South China Sea Rulingi
    X
    May 03, 2016 5:16 PM
    As the Philippines awaits an international arbitration ruling on a challenge to China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea, it is already becoming clear that regardless of which way the decision goes, the dispute is intensifying. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Tensions Rising Ahead of South China Sea Ruling

    As the Philippines awaits an international arbitration ruling on a challenge to China's claims to nearly all of the South China Sea, it is already becoming clear that regardless of which way the decision goes, the dispute is intensifying. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
    Video

    Video Painting Captures President Lincoln Assassination Aftermath

    A newly restored painting captures the moments following President Abraham Lincoln’s assassination in 1865. It was recently unveiled at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, where America’s 16th president was shot. It is the only known painting by an eyewitness that captures the horror of that fateful night. VOA’s Julie Taboh tells us more about the painting and what it took to restore it to its original condition.
    Video

    Video Elephant Summit Results in $5M in Pledges, Presidential Support

    Attended and supported by three African presidents, a three-day anti-poaching summit has concluded in Kenya, resulting in $5 million in pledges and a united message to the world that elephants are worth more alive than dead. The summit culminated at the Nairobi National Park with the largest ivory burn in history. VOA’s Jill Craig attended the summit and has this report about the outcomes.
    Video

    Video Displaced By War, Syrian Artist Finds Inspiration Abroad

    Saudi-born Syrian painter Mohammad Zaza is among the millions who fled their home for an uncertain future after Syria's civil war broke out. Since fleeing Syria, Zaza has lived in Lebanon, Egypt, Jordan and now Turkey where his latest exhibition, “Earth is Blue like an Orange,” opened in Istanbul. He spoke with VOA about how being displaced by the Syrian civil war has affected the country's artists.
    Video

    Video Ethiopia’s Drought Takes Toll on Children

    Ethiopia is dealing with its worst drought in decades, thanks to El Nino weather patterns. An estimated 10 million people urgently need food aid. Six million of them are children, whose development may be compromised without sufficient help, Marthe van der Wolf reports for VOA from the Metahara district.
    Video

    Video Little Havana - a Slice of Cuban Culture in Florida

    Hispanic culture permeates everything in Miami’s Little Havana area: elderly men playing dominoes as they discuss politics, cigar rollers deep at work, or Cuban exiles talking with presidential candidates at a Cuban coffee window. With the recent rapprochement between Cuba and United States, one can only expect stronger ties between South Florida and Cuba.
    Video

    Video California Republicans Weigh Presidential Choices Amid Protests

    Republican presidential candidates have been wooing local party leaders in California, a state that could be decisive in selecting the party's nominee for U.S. president. VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports delegates to the California party convention have been evaluating choices, while front-runner Donald Trump drew hundreds of raucous protesters Friday.
    Video

    Video Kurdish Football Team Helps War-Torn City Cope

    With the conflict still raging across much of Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast, between the rebel PKK and the Turkish state, many Kurds are trying to escape the turmoil by focusing on the success of their football team Amedspor in Diyarbakir. The club is increasingly becoming a symbol for Kurds, not only in Diyarbakir but beyond. Dorian Jones reports from southeast Turkey.
    Video

    Video ‘The Lights of Africa’ - Through the Eyes of 54 Artists

    An exhibition bringing together the work of 54 African artists, one from each country, is touring the continent after debuting at COP21 in Paris. Called "Lumières d'Afrique," the show centers on access to electricity and, more figuratively, ideas that enlighten. Emilie Iob reports from Abidjan, the exhibition's first stop.
    Video

    Video Florida’s Weeki Wachee ‘Mermaids’ Make a Splash

    Since 1947, ‘mermaids’ have fascinated tourists at central Florida’s Weeki Wachee Springs State Park with their fluid movements and synchronized ballet. Performing underwater has its challenges, including cold temperatures and a steady current, as VOA’s Lin Yang and Joseph Mok report.
    Video

    Video Somali, African Union Forces Face Resurgent Al-Shabab

    The Islamic State terror group claimed its first attack in Somalia earlier this week, though the claim has not been verified by forces on the ground. Meanwhile, al-Shabab militants have stepped up their attacks as Somalia prepares for elections later this year. Henry Ridgwell reports there are growing frustrations among Somalia’s Western backers over the country’s slow progress in forming its own armed forces to establish security after 25 years of chaos.
    Video

    Video Nigerians Feel Bite of Buhari Economic Policy

    Despite the global drop in the price of oil, Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has refused to allow the country's currency to devalue, leading to a shortage of foreign exchange. Chris Stein reports from Lagos businessmen and consumers are feeling the impact as the country deals with a severe fuel shortage.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora