STATEMENT BY NASA FLAG BEARER RAILA ODINGA ON THE OVERTHROW OF DICTATORSHIP IN ZIMBABWE
My fellow Principals in NASA, and I, along with all freedom-loving Kenyans, join you in your moment of boundless joy and offer you our warmest congratulations. The tumultuous scenes of ecstasy throughout Zimbabwe at the departure of the dictator Robert Mugabe attest to the African people’s irrepressible hunger for freedom and liberty.
You have succeeded in peacefully overthrowing tyranny and dictatorship and created for yourselves the promise of a prosperous future that only democracy can provide.
This is a historic moment for you and for all Africans who yearn for a better life in democracy. At the same time, your astonishing triumph over a deeply-entrenched despotism will instill fear in the hearts of the continent’s many dictators. I encourage to move swiftly towards consolidating your gains towards democracy, which alone will prevent the return of the old order.
For me personally, this a moment of great satisfaction and of a dream fulfilled. In 2008, as Prime Minister of Kenya, I believe I was the only African leader to have condemned Mr Mugabe’s power grab through a rigged election and offered support for your democratic future.
All of Africa will also be delighted with the strong international support your triumph has engendered. Most significantly, the United States Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has electrified the continent’s democrats with his resounding commitment to democracy and to free and fair elections as the unquestioned goal for the world.
“Whatever short-term arrangements the government may establish,” he said, “the path forward must lead to free and fair elections.”
Amen, say all Kenyan democrats.
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