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Mwai Kibaki: Kenya’s first opposition president dies aged 90

Kenya’s former president, Mwai Kibaki, has died at the age of 90, President Uhuru Kenyatta has announced.

His 2002 election ended 40 years of one-party rule since independence.

However, his 2007 re-election sparked months of nationwide violence and led to 1,200 deaths.

President Kenyatta led the tributes, saying Mr Kibaki had “led the charge to keep the ruling party accountable” and had “earned the abiding respect and affection” of this nation.

The president declared a mourning period until Mr Kibaki’s burial, with the flying of flags at half-mast.

He will be given a state funeral with full military honours, President Kenyatta said.

Mr Kibaki was noted for his liberal reforms, which revived Kenya’s ailing economy, however he was accused of not doing enough to tackle rampant corruption.

He also introduced a new constitution in 2010, after it was overwhelmingly approved in a national referendum. It was billed by some at the time as the most important political event in Kenya’s history since it gained independence from Britain in 1963.

It introduced a more decentralised political system and limited presidential powers.

Kenyans online are divided – some praise Mr Kibaki for fostering national unity, while others focus on his 2007 re-election and the violence which ensued.

He is survived by four children.

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