Tough Work Awaits Kenya Lawmakers

Parliament, back in session, must figure out how to make peace deal work
By Will McCahill,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 6, 2008 4:53 PM CST
Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki, left, addresses the opening session of parliament in Nairobi, Kenya, Thursday March 6, 2008. Kibaki urged lawmakers Thursday to pass the laws needed to enforce the country's...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Kenya's parliament reconvened today, the New York Times reports, and was immediately given the task of putting into law the power-sharing deal that ended the startling wave of violence that followed December's disputed election. "You must now become the ambassadors of peace and reconciliation,” President Mwai Kibaki told legislators. “Please forget the history of what has happened."

Despite the optimism, implementation of the accord is unlikely to go smoothly. Opposition leader Raila Odinga is to become prime minister, but how much power Kibaki will cede to him, and how the cabinet is to be divided between the men's parties will be the subject of much wrangling. Kenyans, Kibaki said, are "keen to see an end to partisan bickering."