NewsExpress advert FCMB banner Fidelity bank banner NewsExpress advert
Visiting Obama thumbs up Africa, says continent on the move

By News Express on 26/07/2015

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+

Views: 2,367


The visiting US President Barack Obama declared Saturday that “Africa is on the move”, praising the spirit of entrepreneurship at a business summit on landmark visit to Kenya.

Obama arrived in Kenya late on Friday, making his first visit to the country of his father’s birth since he was elected president.

“I wanted to be here, because Africa is on the move, Africa is one of the fastest growing regions in the world,” Obama said, drawing cheers and applause from delegates.

“People are being lifted out of poverty, incomes are up, the middle class is growing and young people like you are harnessing technology to change the way Africa is doing business,” Obama said in his first official engagement in Nairobi.

The US embassy itself warned the summit could be “a target for terrorists”, but Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, sharing the stage with Obama, said the event showed a different side of Africa.

“The narrative of African despair is false, and indeed was never true,” Kenyatta said. “Let them know that Africa is open and ready for business.”

In the afternoon Obama was welcomed at State House for talks with Kenya's government. On arrival he shook hands with Deputy President William Ruto, who is on trial at the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague accused of crimes against humanity during post-election violence in 2007-08.

Security, trade and human rights were all on the agenda.

A massive security operation was under way in Nairobi Saturday, with parts of the usually traffic-clogged capital locked down and airspace also closed for the president's landing on Friday and his scheduled departure late Sunday for neighbouring Ethiopia.

Top of the list of security concerns is Somalia's Al-Qaeda affiliate, the Shebab, who have staged a string of suicide attacks, massacres and bombings on Kenyan soil. Two years ago a Shebab assault on the Westgate shopping mall in the heart of the Nairobi left 67 dead.

Obama also laid a wreath at the memorial site of the US embassy destroyed in an Al-Qaeda attack in 1998, standing in silence in memory of the 224 killed in the twin bombings in Nairobi and Tanzania.

Obama said he was delighted at the trip, which many Kenyans see as a “homecoming”.

“It is wonderful to be back in Kenya,” Obama said, also greeting the summit with a few words of Swahili. “I’m proud to be the first US president to visit Kenya, and obviously this is personal for me. My father came from these parts.”

Barack Obama Sr was a pipe-smoking economist who the US leader has admitted he “never truly” knew. He walked out when Obama was just two and died in a car crash in Nairobi in 1982, aged 46.

Excitement has been building in Kenya for weeks, with the visit seen as a major boost for the East African nation’s position as a regional hub – something that has taken a battering in recent years due to Shebab attacks and political violence that landed Kenyan leaders in the ICC.

The visit is also the first ever to Kenya by a sitting US president. At least 10,000 police officers have been deployed to the capital.

Kenyatta greeted Obama as he stepped off Air Force One late Friday. The president’s half-sister Auma was also on the tarmac to welcome him and travel in the bomb-proof presidential limousine, nicknamed “The Beast”, for the drive to the hotel in the city centre, where Obama dined with members of his extended Kenyan family.

Kenya is now the target of frequent Shebab attacks, while the country’s Muslim-majority regions are facing a major recruitment drive by the militants.

The United States is a key security partner for Kenya, which has troops in Somalia as part of the African Union force, and US drones frequently target Shebab fighters – killing the group’s previous leader last year.

A presidential visit to Kenya had been put on hold while Kenyatta faced charges of crimes against humanity for his role in the post-election violence. The ICC has since dropped the case, citing a lack of evidence and accusing Kenya of bribing or intimidating witnesses.

Ruto, whose ICC trial continues, is an unapologetic homophobe and has in the past described gays as “dirty”.

Asked earlier this week whether gay rights would be discussed, Kenyatta insisted it was “a non-issue”, but Obama, in an interview with the BBC, said he was “not a fan of discrimination and bullying” and that this would be “part and parcel of the agenda”.

On Sunday Obama will meet with members of Kenya’s civil society, who have complained of growing restrictions in the country. He is not scheduled to visit his father’s grave in the village of Kogelo in western Kenya, and bemoaned the heavy security restrictions earlier this month.

“I will be honest with you, visiting Kenya as a private citizen is probably more meaningful to me than visiting as president, because I can actually get outside of the hotel room or a conference centre,” Obama said.

But his visit has already had a lasting impact, with a batch of Kenyan newborn babies named in honour. Two new mothers in western Kenya named their sons after the president’s jet, Air Force One. (AFP)

•Photo shows Obama being received by his half-sister Auma on arrival in Nairobi on Friday. Watching is Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Source News Express

Posted 26/07/2015 04:49:17 AM

 

Share on facebook Yahoo mail icon Gmail icon Share on Google+


 

CLASSIFIED ADS

REVEALED: 3 natural ways to get stronger erections, last 25minutes on bed, and increase manhood size without using drugs. Also, Natural Prostrate Enlargement Remedy.. Get In HERE...

 

You may also like...
Anambra First Lady calls for end to girl-child...

Expect cloudy conditions, thunderstorms and rains today: NiMET...

Why Africa is against International Criminal Court: AU...

Army court-martials 4 officers, 16 soldiers for anti-war...

Researchers discover why men die younger than women...

Today’s Weather: Expect clouds, thunderstorms and rains —...

Osinbajo turns petrol seller in Lagos, Fayose supervises...

270 slain IPOB members and other Pro Biafra...

Fuel scarcity worsens in Lagos, Ogun, Abuja

Edo 2016: My victory, a collective one, says...

Amnesty Boss engages Delta stakeholders on security of...

Leo Stan Ekeh to chair News Express 5th...

 

Latest News BREAKING NEWS: Senate calls for Buhari’s impeachment APC shifts congresses, National Convention Big Brother Naija sponsor, Payporte, in N23m debt mess, begs court to dismiss winding up suit Democracy under threat: Southern, Middle Belt leaders IGP Ibrahim Idris disrespecting me and the Senate — Saraki Shell profits jump as oil prices soar Troops nab militias in Nasarawa, recover arms Abnormal herdsmen behind Benue killings — Presidency Umahi orders arrest of policeman over alleged killing of Okada rider INVESTIGATION: Former DG NEMA, Sidi Ali, maintained 20 bank accounts — Reps Revenue discrepancies: FAAC meeting fails to hold again 2019: Senator Abe joins Rivers guber race

 

Most Read Nigerian female sex addict opens up, says ‘I like it with both men and women’ (340,146 views) NUDE PHOTO OF OMOTOLA JALADE-EKEINDE surfaces online (335,249 views) Shameless Genevieve Nnaji exposes breasts in public (268,206 views) Finally named: The full list of friends of Nigerian female sex addict who prowled Facebook (220,554 views) Igbo scholar disgraces Femi Fani-Kayode •Demolishes claims on Igbo/Yoruba history with facts and figures (202,349 views) OLUMBA OLUMBA OBU (the one who called himself God) IS DEAD (198,439 views) Breaking News: POPULAR REVEREND CONVERTS TO ISLAM in Kaduna (Nigeria) (173,165 views) OBJ’s son reported dead in Lagos plane crash •Names of more victims emerge (155,525 views) THE FINAL DISGRACE: Igbo scholar unleashes more facts about Igbo/Yoruba history, finishes off Femi Fani-Kayode with second article (147,328 views) My wasted years in Olumba Olumba Obu’s Evil Brotherhood (139,325 views) Lagos plane crash: Journalist releases victims’ names (137,121 views) Gunmen kill ASP, 2 other police officers in vain bid to kidnap Rivers PDP chieftain (129,786 views)

 

Categories Advertorials (3) African Press Organisation (81) Art & Literature (36) Business & Economy (3,077) Business Verdict (40) Columnists (839) Complaints & Requests (94) Enterprise & Opportunities (207) Entertainment (485) Features (570) Global Business Monitor (267) International (1,929) Interview (149) Live Commentary (28) Love Matters (116) News (34,771) Opinion (917) Pidgin (10) Politics (4,823) Religion (724) Sports (1,487) Stock Watch (28) AMA & Al Jazeera Global Update

 

Firstmobile banner

 

 

NEWS EXPRESS TV

Boko Haram commanders surrender

 

APO Group Partner

 

 

CLASSIFIED ADS

REVEALED: 3 natural ways to get stronger erections, last 25minutes on bed, and increase manhood size without using drugs. Also, Natural Prostrate Enlargement Remedy.. Get In HERE...

GOCOP Accredited Member

GOCOP Accredited member

 

 

Africa Media Agency and Al Jazeera

Advertisement