Zambia’s fourth president Rupiah Banda says it is very unfortunate that Kenya is still undergoing political turmoil with that country’s opposition leader Ralia Odinga inaugurating himself as president.
According to a statement issued by First Secretary for Press and Tourism at the Zambian Embassy in Ethiopia, Banda was speaking, Wednesday, in Addis Ababa where he was attending a meeting for the Trade and Development Bank (TDB).
Responding to questions on Odinga’s self-inauguration, Banda observed that it was ultimately the people who suffered in such situations and he recalled that he was magnanimous enough to concede defeat in 2011.
“Elections are intended to resolve problems of leadership. Once you have had elections and institutions which have been created by all the people of a country intended to solve the leadership problem. In the case of Zambia, which I was directly involved myself, we had an election and the election declared that I had lost and in the interest of peace and unity of the people of Zambia, I conceded. Of course the circumstances are different from one country to the other. In the case of Kenya, which is the reason why you are asking this question, is very unfortunate that this matter is still going on because the first impact is on the economy of the country,” said Banda.
“For many months, there were problems of holding the elections and then once the elections were held, there were contestations and then they had to have a rerun, a lot of money was spent, tourists were not coming to Kenya, industries were suffering and the people were suffering so it is very unfortunate for Kenya that the problem continues.”
Meanwhile, Banda, who was part of the Commonwealth Election Observer Mission to Kenya, said he was ready to re-engage the two leaders of that country and find an amicable solution for the political problems faced by Kenyans.