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The Independent Review Committee (Kriegler Committee) mandated to appraise the Kenyan electoral process and the Commission of Inquiry into the post election Violence (Waki Commission). KAS had earlier supported summorization and printing of the reports into reader friendly versions (see publications 2009).
The regional Grassroots workshops on the Waki and Kriegler Reports – two main consequences of the National Mediation Accord – were launched in November 2008 under the sponsorship of the Konrad Adenauer Foundation and implemented by the Dialogue Africa Foundation. Between November and April 2009, eight meetings were held in the following regions: Kisumu ( Nyanza), Kakamega (Western), Nandi Hills (Rift Valley), Mombasa (Coast) Machakos (Eastern), Garissa (North Eastern), Embu (Eastern), and Nakuru (Rift Valley). As for 2009 there are approximately 20 more workshops in different provinces planned.
All the meetings followed the same schedule of presentation of the printed summarized version of the Kriegler and Waki Report followed by relevant inputs from plenary discussions by the participants. Further discussions emphasized community ownership of the findings by the two commissions and encouraged participants to adopt action plans in follow up to the representative workshops.
Most of the participants undertook to pursue similar conversations in their habitat communities, mediate any future violence and enhance public awareness on peace and political process including policy and legislative outcomes on the post election crisis. Altogether more than 400 different community groups were reached directly through the public meetings. Many members of the public assessed the hand outs and also followed media reports on some of the meetings.
The overall impacts of the activity have been impressive. They include the enhancing of prominence and public awareness on the Waki and Kriegler reports. A dialogue for enduring peace between communities living in cosmopolitan areas such as Kisumu, Machakos, Nandi Hills and Nakuru was initiated and also a community platform for local dialogues for emerging actions on the post election violence (recommendations of the reports) such as the special tribunal and the Truth, Justice and the Reconciliation Commission has been developed. The workshops led to collaboration with other Community Service Organizations and community actors in a campaign against impunity, regarding the urgent need to have public leaders accountable for their actions.