Kenya ambassador to US Githae to present credentials to Obama on Tuesday
A statement from the White House Press office says Mr Githae will be among new ambassadors-designate from several countries who will present their papers to President Obama on November 18.
The former finance minister in the Grand Coalition government arrived in Washington on Wednesday and reported to work at the Kenyan embassy on R Street on Thursday morning.
Sources told the Nation that he was received by excited embassy staff who have been without a substantive ambassador for close to one and a half years since former ambassador, Elkanah Odembo, left in June last year.
“We are excited to welcome Mr Githae to DC,” said Ms Betty Belsoi, the secretary to the deputy Chief of Mission in a phone interview on Thursday.
Ms Belsoi told the Nation that Mr Githae was preparing for the White House ceremony.
“We intend to have a reception soon after the credentialing ceremony on Tuesday evening,” she told the Nation.
Since Mr Odembo’s departure, the mission was headed by the chargé d’affaires, Ms Jean Njeri Kamau, who served as the acting ambassador.
Ms Kamau has since been moved to Bangkok Thailand as a full ambassador.
On Thursday, the US embassy in Nairobi dismissed reports that Washington DC has denied Njeru Githae credentials as the United States Ambassador.
“Reports that the United States government has denied credentials for Ambassador Robinson Njeru Githae are inaccurate. The United States has given agreement and is currently making arrangements for his credentialing ceremony,” read the statement from the embassy’s press office.
Githae was among ambassadors and head of missions who have been undergoing an orientation course in Nairobi after being approved by the National Assembly to take up their postings at various stations across the world.
Washington is considered a key posting owing to the political and economic clout that the United States is perceived to have as well as its standing in the international pecking order.
During the vetting session by a parliamentary committee last month, Mr Githae said if confirmed, his first agenda in Washington would be to make sure President Obama keeps his promise to visit Kenya before the end of his presidential term.
“I can deliver him,” he is quoted as having said of the US president.
Githae’s appointment as President Kenyatta’s man in Washington is, so far, the clearest signal that frosty relations between the Kenyan and the US presidents are getting better.
President Kenyatta nominated Mr Githae on August 14 this year shortly after returning from a much publicised trip to Washington.