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Kenyans Anxiously Await Results of Political Deal

While Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki and opposition leader Raila Odinga were able to reach an agreement on a coalition government, Kenyans are anxiously waiting to see if the deal will hold. Margaret Warner reports from Kenya on the latest developments.

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  • JIM LEHRER:

    And, finally tonight, Kenya. This week, Margaret Warner will have a series of reports on and from Kenya's efforts to recover from the violence that ignited two-and-a-half months ago. Tonight, she reports on the stalled political reconciliation efforts.

  • MARGARET WARNER:

    On this Palm Sunday, Kenyans are praying for peace. At the Holy Family Basilica in downtown Nairobi yesterday, thousands of worshippers joined in the ritual blessing of palms and a procession commemorating Jesus' entry into Jerusalem.

  • PRAYER LEADER:

    Thank you, heavenly father, that we can meet, talk and share with one another regardless of tribe, creed and economic background. May hatred and jealousy among us not lead us to destruction.

  • MARGARET WARNER:

    Holy Family's parishioners were denied this comfort of communal prayer earlier this year when they couldn't get to church. A wave of violence engulfed Kenya, sparked when the incumbent president, Mwai Kibaki, was declared the narrow winner in the late December presidential election against the top opposition leader, Raila Odinga.

    Odinga charged fraud. It was an ugly explosion, as Odinga's supporters — members of his Luo tribe and other ethnic groups — went on a rampage against members of the dominant Kikuyu tribe of President Kibaki.

    The Kikuyus responded with brutal revenge attacks. The victims were mostly ordinary folks who found themselves on the wrong side of an ethnic divide.

    More than 1,000 Kenyans were killed and another 300,000 forced from their homes before former U.N. Secretary General Kofi Annan managed to hammer out a power-sharing deal between Kibaki and Odinga, two full months after the violence began.

    But it's been nearly three weeks now, and the parliament here still hasn't approved the constitutional changes required to make the power-sharing deal a reality. The Kenyans we've spoken to are frustrated that their political leaders haven't gotten on with the job.

    Kenya's leaders have been spending the last two weeks setting up inquiries into what went wrong and bargaining over which ministries Kibaki and Odinga will control.

    Meanwhile, burned-out buildings pockmark many cities and towns in Kenya's farming heartland, the Rift Valley. The tent camps for internally displaced people are bursting. And Nairobi's business class, now players in the global economy, struggle to recover from the two-month disruption.