Kenya's Opposition ODM to
Propose Power-Sharing Government
By James Butty
11 February 2008
In Kenya, both the opposition Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) and
embattled President Mwai Kibaki’s Party of National Unity (PNU)
are scheduled to present new positions Monday to former U.N.
Secretary-General Kofi Annan who is mediating a resolution to the
country’s post-election crisis. This comes after both parties
agreed to abandon their original postures in favor of a political
Peter Anyang Nyong’o is ODM secretary general. He told VOA that
contrary to reports over the weekend, a deal is far from being
“What happened at the mediation talks is that finally both parties
have concurred that a political solution is necessary in principle.
Previously PNU was insisting on a legal procedure, on a legal
technicality that the only way to deal with the issue is to
recount the votes, or if ODM is dissatisfied to go to court. I
think Kofi Annan has convinced them that that is a hopeless way to
go about things. And that what we needed is for both parties to
put on the table what they think are the options for a political
solution,” he said.
Nyong’o said the ODM has also modified its previous positions that
Raila Odinga won the December 27 elections and that President
Kibaki should step down.
“What we are now proposing is that there be a transitional
executive authority for six months during which a reconstituted
electoral commission of Kenya would be put in place and then later
for a presidential election after six months. That is our first
option and we shall put that on the table on Monday, and if that
is agreed upon so be it. If it is not, we have a second option
which we shall also propose,” Nyongo’o said.
He said the ODM would propose the establishment of a co-executive
“If a transitional arrangement is to be worked out, there will be
a co-executive, that is Raila and Kibaki will have co-executive
powers just like Mandela and de Klerk (F.W. de Klerk, South
Africa’s last apartheid-era president) had between (1989) and 1994
when Mandela came out of prison. If you look at the South African
presidential executive authority law, it is something that can be
repeated in Kenya on a transition basis while we undertake much
longer term solutions to our problems subsequently,” he said.
Nyong’o said the ODM has shown much flexibility from its original
positions but without compromising the fact that the ODM believes
the December 27 elections were rigged by President Kibaki.
“We are flexible precisely because we want to make sure that we
have an arrangement which would be supported by all parties. We
want a bi-partisan approach to the problem. That does not mean,
however, that we have compromised in principle the fact that the
election was stolen. That is something that will come up when the
truth and reconciliation commission is established,” Nyong’o said.