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TheStreet Open House

The "I Run For Integrity" National Peace Campaign

NAIROBI, Kenya, February 13, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

Transparency International, Kenya (TI-Kenya) makes peace a priority as it launches the " I RUN FOR INTEGRITY  -  I AM THE CHANGE " peace campaign at their offices in ACK Garden House,1 st Ngong Avenue .  

The press briefing scheduled shortly after the first ever Presidential Debate in Kenya is scheduled to be held at the Transparency International offices Wednesday 13 February in Upperhill, Nairobi Kenya.  With just four weeks until the country starts polling for the first general elections since the violence in 2007, this campaign is hoping to create a safe and hopeful platform for Kenyans to express their views on how integrity and peace can shape their future.  The first event in the series planned by campaign sponsors Transparency International and partner Kenya Believe It is the I RUN FOR INTEGRITY PEACE RALLY to be held in NAKURU at the AFRAHA Stadium 10am to 6pm .  We hope this rally will show the numbers behind integrity and peace in a country where on the eve of Valentine's Day there is more discussion about elections than romance.

TI-Kenya Executive Director Mr. Samuel Kimeu said the stakes are very high in these elections. "We are in a new era of the first General Elections under the Constitution of Kenya, 2010 and that has made the dynamics different from previous elections."

In the lead up to the March 2013 general election, the campaign aims at sensitising the population and especially Kenya's youth, on the importance of electing leaders based on their personal integrity, competence and suitability. The campaign calls for elections that are free, fair, transparent and peaceful. The youth make over 60% of the population of Kenya and have the potential to completely change the course our history if they use their vote and numbers for this purpose.

The campaign's message will be spread through two concerts in Nakuru and Mombasa, targeting a total of 40,000 people. Its strapline is " SIASA NI KUAMINIKA. KUTUMIKIA. KUBADILISHA", which translates as "Politics is: being trustworthy, serving, bringing about change." The concerts will have performances by six leading artists and will feature the official anthem developed for the campaign with all six performers on stage together for the first time. The dates will be Saturday 16 th   February at Nakuru ' s Afraha stadium and Sunday 24 th February in Mombasa. Both are family concerts and will be held during the day.

The official sponsor of the campaign is Transparency International Kenya (TI-Kenya). TI- Kenya is part of the Transparency International group that is a non-partisan coalition of individuals with a shared vision of a corruption free world. The campaign was conceived by Kenya Believe It movement, which encourages all Kenyans to work together for positive change and to transcend tribal, ethnic and gender divisions.

The I RUN FOR INTEGRITY initiative is the first of its kind in Kenya. It has identified Kenya's youth as a voting group pivotal to the country's future.

"Elections are a defining characteristic of democratic regimes" said Mr. Samuel Kimeu, Executive Director of TI-Kenya. "Through elections, politicians are held accountable by the people they serve.  It is vitally important that every individual voter understands that electing leaders with integrity is essential for realising a country's potential.  Education and awareness are the essential tools to empower citizens to make informed choices."

"Youth can be drivers of historic social change" said Priya Chana, Director of Kenya Believe It.  "For instance, in the 1960s in Europe and the USA, youth movements and the rock artists stood up and shook the system.   Non-discrimination, and gender and race equality, went from being causes for protesters to being fundamental mainstream social attitudes.  Kenyan youth and musical artists can be equally ground-breaking."

TI- Kenya has enlisted 6 leading artists to champion the message of integrity and peaceful elections: Jua Cali, Sanaipei, Rabbit, Avril, Ala-C and Marya.  Together with the campaign team, they have produced an anthem called " RFI " ("Run For Integrity") which was unveiled at the press conference, and will be widely available.

TI- Kenya appeals to youth in Kenya to support this campaign by logging on to the official TI-Kenya Facebook site: http://www.facebook.com/TransparencyKenya,where they can express their thoughts and opinions freely in a safe, respectful manner. Trending on twitter #irun4integrity and follow @TIKenya.

Jua Cali, leading Kenyan artist who is a driving force in this movement said: "I believe in my people. I believe that Kenyan youth want what is best for the country and I believe they will choose peace and integrity this election."

TI- Kenya implore upon the youth to get out, spread the peace message and vote. " March 4 th is Election Day. It is our day-it is the day for all of us to stand up and be counted, to make our voices heard. It is our day to exercise our voice.

It's time to mobilize our nation, to bring us all together into an unstoppable force.

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