Kenya held a debate before the March 2013 presidential election — the first time the African nation has ever held such an event. Audiences from around the world, including millions of Kenyans, tuned in to watch the debate on national television and YouTube. Al-Jezeera reports all eight candidates took the stage to fight for the seat of former President Mwai Kibaki, who is resigning after two terms:
Disputes over the previous election, in 2007, led to violence that killed more than 1,000 people and displaced 600,000 others.
The violence shattered Kenya’s image as a regional beacon of stability when then opposition chief Odinga accused President Kibaki of rigging his way to re-election following the December 2007 polls. What began as political riots quickly turned into ethnic killings of Kenyatta’s Kikuyu tribe, who in return launched reprisal attacks, plunging Kenya into its worst wave of violence since independence in 1963.
Uhuru Kenyatta, a leading candidate for the upcoming March 4 presidential election, is currently facing charges before the International Crimes Court regarding his involvement in the post-election violence in 2007, according to the Associated Press.
Watch debate highlights and read the full story at Al-Jazeera.