Sunday evening I wrote my first blog post about the crisis in Kenya. It was from a personal perspective because I know a priest over in Kenya, whom I am praying for her and her family’s safety. I read the limited news I could get and ended up relying primarily on the blog,Kenya Pundit as a key source of information.
As part of a bigger picture, I was concerned that the U.S. State Department was congratulating the declared winner, while the British Foreign Secretary was raising concerns about the validity of the electoral process. This has been followed by the European Union Election Observation Mission issuing a statement saying,
The General Elections in the Republic of Kenya have fallen short of key international and regional standards for democratic elections. They were marred by a lack of transparency in the processing and tallying of presidential results, which raises concerns about the accuracy of the final result.
It seemed to me that this should be getting more coverage, both in the mainstream media, as well as in progressive blogs, especially those concerned with election integrity.
Now, there are reports of a church being burned in Kenya with 30 to 50 people dying inside. If it bleeds, it leads, and this is starting to get more attention of the mainstream media.
Yet there are additional aspects to this story that are not being touch yet. I’ve been scanning the Internet to find statements by any of the Presidential candidates about the crisis in Kenya. So far, I haven’t found anything.
I did, however, find two interesting articles. Barack Obama’s father is from Kenya. Last year, the Chicago Sun-Times had a special section about Barack Obama in Africa, Senator rebukes Kenya's corruption. The article notes Obama’s call for Kenya to rise above tribalism. Obama is a Luo and campaigned with Raila Odinga, the opposition Luo running for president.
Yesterday, over at African Path, Tedla Asfaw asks “Kenya Elections 2007: Where is Senator Obama?” This would be a good time for Sen. Obama to stand up and show some foreign policy leadership. While we are at it, the other candidates should also be standing up for fair elections and seeking a peaceful solution to a volatile situation.
So, I continue my prayers for the people of Kenya, and I also pray that some of our current presidential candidates will make statements and help the United States restore its moral authority.