President Uhuru goes to Europe,China and Japan as Obama jets in Africa
Nairobi, Kenya: President Uhuru Kenyatta kicks off a three-week tour of Eastern Europe and Asia in what is described as seeking to strengthen trade and economic ties with the East.
Uhuru is slated to leave Nairobi this week to Moscow, Russia before heading to Beijing, China and end his tour in Japan.
In what appears as an act to counter US PresidentBarack Obama’s snub of his fatherland on his second tour to the continent, President Uhuru’s trip is calculated to take him to China, on the days that Obama will be in the next-door neighbourhood of Tanzania.
Uhuru, according to top aides wants to underscore the importance of eastern countries to his economic development agenda of creating strong ties with trade partners.
While in Russia, the President is expected to tour factories that manufacture armoury and meet top Russian Government officials before sealing bilateral deals on trade and exports.
“Obviously the tour is well calculated to have President Uhuru visiting friendly countries when Obama tours Tanzania, it can’t be a coincidence,” USIU political science lecturer Professor Munene Macharia says.
According to Prof. Macharia a country deals with another country based on its interests with Kenya having earmarked China and Russia as key allies.
“China and Russia are definitely friends while Japan which is considered a friendly nation with the west being keen to protect its business interests,” he adds.
Elegyo Marakwet senator Kipchumba Murkomen however said that the trip to China and Japan had been planned earlier and is not a reply to Obama’s snub of Kenya.
“I know that the trip had been planned long ago and has nothing to do with Obama coming to Africa and skipping Kenya,” Murkomen said.
Nominated MP and key Uhuru ally Amina Abdalla described Uhuru’s tour as meant to expand Kenya’s economic frontiers and not closing existing relationships as it may appear.-standardmedia.co.ke