Saturday, 11 May 2013

You will vote in next polls, Uhuru assures diaspora Kenyans

President Uhuru Kenyatta and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta meet Kenyans living in the diaspora at Southern Sun Cape Sun Hotel in Cape Town, South Africa May 10, 2013. PPS
President Uhuru Kenyatta and First Lady Margaret Kenyatta meet Kenyans living in the diaspora at Southern Sun Cape Sun Hotel in Cape Town, South Africa May 10, 2013. PPS 
Posted  Saturday, May 11  2013 at  15:51
President Uhuru Kenyatta has assured Kenyans in the diaspora of voting in the next General Election.
He said measures to ensure this happens were already ongoing in line with the Constitution.
While addressing Kenyans living in South Africa, President Kenyatta observed that time constraints and other logistical difficulties barred those in the diaspora from participating in the last General Election.
The Head of State said his government is seeking to mainstream the Kenyan diaspora in national development agenda so as to achieve aspirations and objectives of its diaspora policy.
“You are aware that the government has been developing a Diaspora Policy that will shape its engagement with you, with a view to meeting your needs and expectations in a mutually beneficial relationship," said President Kenyatta.
He challenged the County Governments to create innovative ways to attract diaspora investments and to develop avenues through which Kenyans abroad can contribute to the formulation of their development plans.
The President urged the Kenyan diaspora to take advantage of investment opportunities unfolding in the Counties which are the new centres of development.
“In the new Constitutional dispensation, and in an effort to achieve the aspirations of this Policy, we seek to mainstream the Kenyan Diaspora into the national development agenda,” President Kenyatta said.
The Head of State reiterated his call to the Kenyan diaspora to form strong associations which will not only assist the Government in engaging them but also help lobby for their interests.
On security, President Kenyatta has once again reassured that his Government will take appropriate measures to eliminate all threats and agents of terror targeting Kenyans and the country at large.
Underscoring the importance of peace and security to economic prosperity in the country, the President said Kenyans cannot achieve the aspired levels of economic development without the safety of its citizens and the security of their investments.
It is for this reason therefore that the Government has expended huge efforts and resources on peace building and peace making, the Head of State who is attending World Economic Forum on Africa said.
“The importance of peace and security to economic prosperity cannot be overemphasized. Indeed, we cannot achieve the levels of economic development that we aspire without ensuring the safety of our people and the security of our investments,” President Kenyatta noted.
Recalling his recent visit to the United Kingdom where he attended the London Conference on Somalia, President Kenyatta said the stakeholders agreed on raft of measures aimed at stabilising Somalia.
The Head of State further said Kenya will continue to be engaged in the Somali process in the interest of its national security.
Said the President:  “We will also continue to support and participate in the initiatives of the IGAD, the AU and the international community in restoring peace and security in the Central, Eastern and horn of Africa regions.”
With regard to regional integration, President Kenyatta said his Government will continue to support regional economic integration initiatives across the continent.
Noting that the future of Africa lies in greater integration, President Kenyatta said time was ripe for the African economic renaissance stressing the need for the African countries to join hands to hasten the process.
Said the President, “I believe that the future of Africa lies in greater integration as this will widen markets for goods and services. This, in turn, will enhance intra-Africa trade, facilitate generation of wealth and uplift the lives of our people.”
The Head of State further reiterated his firm commitment to implementing devolution which he noted resonates well with the Jubilee Government’s policy of inclusiveness and participation.
He said devolution will not only guarantee participation in decision making at the grassroots but also expand Kenya’s vibrant democratic space and spur economic growth across the country.
The President further assured Kenyans and the international community that his government will continue deepening institutional reforms as required under the constitution.
President Kenyatta said the reforms will enhance probity in government, entrench the rule of law and good governance and restore confidence in public institutions.
The Head of State restated his commitment to implementing the country’s economic blueprint, Vision 2030 among other policies that will enable the country grow its economy by double digits.

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