President Uhuru Kenyatta hands over the national flag to the Rio bound team at State House, Nairobi, on July 22, 2016. PHOTO | STEVE OMONDI

President Uhuru Kenyatta has revealed why he will not be going to Rio de Janaiero, Brazil, to cheer the Kenyan team at the Olympic Games: To dispel the notion that he is a “tourist president”.

Speaking on Friday morning at State House, Nairobi, before handing over the national flag to the Rio bound team, the President politely turned down an invitation to Brazil from National Olympic Committee of Kenya (Nock) chairman Kipchoge Keino.

“We thank you for the keen interest you’ve shown in the team, especially regarding doping. We want to welcome you to Rio to come and cheer the team, ” the Nock boss had said while addressing the President.

Only for President Kenyatta to decline the offer in a lighthearted response that left the audience in stitches.

“I would have loved to come with you, but these guys will say tourist amehama tena,” he said in an apparent reference to the media which has in recent times pointed out the numerous overseas trips that the President has made since his election in 2013.

President Kenyatta has made 77 foreign trips since taking over in April 2013.

At Friday’s event, the President handed over the national flag to the athletes and challenged them to compete cleanly and with pride.


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