Kenyan students pose for a photo as part of a USIU-Africa campaign to encourage Kenyans to maintain peace before and after the repeat presidential election slated for Thursday, October 26. From left: Almasi Mae, Akaash Barot, Simon Mwandoe, Janes Amondi, Meet Pancholi, Yvette Achieng, Ryan Otsimi and Renee Wangwe Photo: Dan Muchai
The university will remain closed on Friday, October 20 to commemorate the Kenyan national holiday – Mashujaa Day. This was announced by the Vice Chancellor Prof. Paul Zeleza, in an email message to the entire university community, in which he also indicated that the university will close from Tuesday, October 24 to Sunday, October 29. This, he stateD, will afford an opportunity to Kenyan members of the university community, to participate in the repeat Kenyan Presidential Election slated for Thursday, October 26. Similarly, classes that were scheduled from Friday October 20 to Saturday, October 28, are cancelled.
In his message, Prof. Zeleza underlined the values of “peaceful coexistence as well as respect for the rights and property of others in speech and action” that all members of the university community share, adding his observation that these values were already practiced in our learning and working environment.
Since the repeat presidential election was ordered by the Supreme Court of Kenya on September 1, the country has experienced a rapidly deteriorating political environment that has led to calls for boycott and a withdrawal from the elections by the incumbent President’s main rival, Mr. Raila Odinga. Mr. Odinga, a former Prime Minister of Kenya, was the keynote speaker during the 37th Commencement Ceremony in August 2015.
Prof. Zeleza urged students, staff and faculty to “continue to be that shining light of goodwill and tolerance that Kenya needs so desperately at this time”. Drawing inspiration from his experience as a historian, the Vice Chancellor reminded the community of their responsibility to write “a heroic chapter of integrity, leadership and service”, which he noted was “our gift to the future”.
While the university is closed, essential services will still be provided to campus residents. Contacts details for the security team, which remains on standby, are available on our website.