Hillary Clinton in Kenya: 'I have lost elections'

    U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton during her visit to Senegal as part of her six-nation tour of Africa. Photo by: David C. Harmantas / U.S. State Department

    Hillary Clinton’s six-nation tour of Africa brought her to Kenya over the weekend. As expected, she discussed governance and next year’s elections with government and civil society representatives.

    The U.S. secretary of state’s main message was true to her agenda: Various sectors of Kenya’s society must work together to make sure the elections in March are free, fair, transparent and credible. Kenya, she said, must avoid a repeat of the unrest and violence that followed elections in December 2007, which triggered clashes between supporters of President Mwai Kibaki and his main opponent Raila Odinga over alleged election fraud. The crisis ended with a power-sharing deal brokered by former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan that saw Odinga’s appointment as prime minister.

    Clinton drew on personal experience to help drive her message home: “I have won elections and I have lost elections. And when you lose an election and when your supporters see you lose and election, it’s important that they have to see that the process was fair. And that’s what we hope for here for our friends in Kenya.”

    From Kenya, the secretary of state visited Malawi and South Africa, where she gave a speech at the first-ever U.S.-South Africa Business Partnership Summit. Devex has previewed her agenda here.

    Find jobs and projects in Kenya and see which organizations are working in the country. Read more development aid news online, and subscribe to The Development Newswire to receive top international development headlines from the world’s leading donors, news sources and opinion leaders — emailed to you FREE every business day.

    About the author

    • Ivy Mungcal

      As former senior staff writer, Ivy Mungcal contributed to several Devex publications. Her focus is on breaking news, and in particular on global aid reform and trends in the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and the Americas. Before joining Devex in 2009, Ivy produced specialized content for U.S. and U.K.-based business websites.