January 26, 2011

Kenyan ambassador to speak about his country's newly won constitution

ambassador

Hamline University School of Law will host the Kenyan Ambassador to the United States, Elkanah Odembo, during his upcoming visit to Minnesota. At Hamline, Odembo will deliver the address "Kenya: Participatory Democracy and the New Constitution.”

This will be the ambassador’s only university address during his visit to Minnesota. The event will take place at 4 p.m. on Thursday, February 3, in room 103 of Hamline University School of Law, located at 1492 Hewitt Avenue in Saint Paul. It is free and open to all.

In August of 2010, Kenyan voters approved a new constitution which includes a bill of rights that ensures the right to food, health, education, and shelter. Odembo and others studied dozens of the world’s leading constitutions while conducting public hearings and extensive civic education programs, enabling the entire nation to participate in the reform process.

This approach of including disparate voices and stakeholders was well-received by the international community, and the adoption of the constitution is seen as a significant achievement. The constitution creates a new form of government and vision for a country that less than three years earlier faced a collapse amid post-election violence.

Questions? Contact Deb Lange at 651-523-2122.