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OPINION: Embassy in Washington DC is a let down to needy Kenyans in US

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The cry for help by athletics legend Henry Rono to get help to return home to Kenya from the US won’t be the first or the last. There was also that of Mr Timothy Majanja, a Kenyan who had migrated to Canada and the US over 40 years previously but ended up homeless. He eventually died in poverty in Atlanta.

Both cases were highlighted by the Kenyan media. The response to help for the gentlemen has mostly come from ordinary Kenyans and, in the case of Mr Rono, Athletics Kenya showed willingness to support him. None, if at all, came from Kenya’s consulate where the two men fell under.

The inertia in our foreign missions is the same. There has been hue and cry from diaspora Kenyans about lack of necessary services and support by our diplomats.

DIPLOMATIC MISSIONS

One of the most important roles diplomatic missions play is to offer consular assistance to its citizens in the diaspora. That does not begin and end with issuance of passports and other travel documents. They are also meant to be there for citizens in distress abroad.

The plight of Mr Rono and Mr Majanja is experienced by many Kenyans stuck abroad due to economic hardship. The diaspora community continues to remit to this country billions of shillings yearly.

READ ALSO:   FBI - How Kenyans stole over Sh300 million from US firms

This group has become our best export and their continued contribution to the national economy is commendable.

However, their financial success may not always be static and they could fall on hard times. Our missions need to be there for them during these hard times too.

But from the avalanche of complaints from Kenyans in the diaspora, there is very little support for them. Clearly, if those who contribute to the economy so much struggle to access services in our missions, I would imagine unsuccessful Kenyan immigrants abroad will be the last to get any help.

NEPOTISM

The missions have a duty of care to the citizens. A career diplomat would understand basic rules in diplomacy, including duty to the citizens. But they have been accused of incompetence due to their having been turned into dumping grounds for failures at home or conduits for nepotism and cronyism.

The dual nationality question that cropped up during the vetting of nominees for diplomatic posts highlighted the issue of loyalty. Although this is a valid point as far as nominees with dual citizenship are concerned, it is also indicative of the overall character of our foreign missions.

The loyalty of most of those appointed through political patronage is to the appointing individual rather than to Country.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: You won't believe what this Kenyan man in US just did to his 'errant' dogs

Appointing non-career diplomats oftentimes just offers individuals and their families a long sightseeing holiday to a foreign country. They add no value to the diplomatic table as they lack the skills and tools required of a bona fide diplomat.

DIPLOMACY

Standard at our missions won’t be improved by training appointees in how to eat with a knife and fork. Diplomacy is not just about eating. Many non-career diplomats from Africa have walked into the haze of diplomatic immunity by breaching laws in their host countries. Taking immunity as cover for all sorts of misdemeanours, they engage in fraud, rape and slavery.

Some unqualified diplomats have even been unable to articulate basic diplomatic issues at press conferences, embarrassing their countries.

Our diplomats should have more roles to play for those in the diaspora than hosting nyama choma and beer festivals on Jamhuri Day. It is fine to make merry but the serious work required of the diplomats is duty to Kenyans. It is also a platform to be used to increase foreign investment.

Our missions are the face of Kenya and ought to be run by experienced career diplomats able to market the country effectively and articulate our foreign policy. They also need to be reduced in size to make them cost-effective. In this Digital Age, it makes no sense to have missions in just about any country.

READ ALSO:   Kenyans in US have until June 19th to register for Huduma Namba

Why not have key missions in countries that are strategically important to us in terms of investment and amalgamate the rest into lean consular offices?

FOREIGN POLICIES

Kenya’s success is, equally, dependent on an effective foreign mission that can articulate our foreign policies well with a qualified experienced career diplomat in charge. Dumping non-deserving people there shows lack of seriousness in our foreign policy and is akin to trying to fly without wings!

* * *

The ongoing rush for e-passports should never have happened. It is causing unnecessary anxiety and panic among Kenyans. If the government were serious with their deadline, why did they not provide many more centres to speed it up?

The large crowds outside the few immigration centres pose A security threat too as far as terrorism goes and the queues make a field day for bribe-hungry immigration officers. It is sheer tortious. I hope somebody isn’t sleeping on the job, making Kenyans to pay for their incompetence!

-BY KALTUM GUYO

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Diaspora

Brampton City in Canada to Honor Kenyans in the Diaspora

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The Kenyan national flag is set to be raised for two weeks in the city of Brampton, Ontario, Canada, in honor of Kenya’s Independence Day.

The flag-hoisting ceremony also seeks to appreciate the participation of Kenyan-Canadians living in Brampton. The ceremony will be held at Brampton City Hall by the Mayor of Brampton, Patrick Brown, on Saturday, December 14th, a day when Kenyans living in Canada will mark the 56th Jamhuri Day.

Several political, community leaders, Federal Members of Parliament, Regional and Municipal Councilors from the Greater Toronto Area are expected to attend the inaugural flag-raising event. A representative from the Kenya High Commission in Canada is also expected to attend.

“This is a great achievement and a milestone not just to the Kenyans living in Canada but to Kenya as a country. We are so proud to have the Canadian government recognize, for the first time, the contributions of Kenyans in this country.”

“This is a significant step towards getting integrated with other communities that form part of the immigrant Canadian society,” said Kenyan Canadian Association (KCA) President Ephraim Mwaura.

 

 

 

READ ALSO:   FBI - How Kenyans stole over Sh300 million from US firms
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Diaspora

VIDEO-Diaspora meet to address Big Four Agenda

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Opposition leader Raila Odinga, who is also the African Union High Representative for Infrastructure Development, will be among prominent leaders who will address the Diaspora convention which is taking place in Nairobi between December 17, 2019 and December 19, 2019 at the Ole Sereni Hotel.

Speaking to the Nation in Nairobi, the President of Kenya Diaspora Alliance (KDA) Shem Ochuodho said among the keynote speakers will be Mr Siddharth Chatterjee UN Resident Coordinator, Danish Ambassador to Kenya Mette Knudsen and Mr Jerome Otieno, Group MD Life, UAP Old Mutual, East Africa.

Prior to the 2017 General Elections, Mr Odinga championed diaspora issues, especially voting rights for Kenyans living abroad.

Dr Ochuodho said the theme for this year’s convention is “Diaspora: The Big Four Agenda”.

On the recently launched Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report, Dr Ochuodho said despite its many flaws, it at least promises to address contentious issues contained in the dual citizenship clause in the Constitution.

“One is that they are talking of doing away with restrictions on dual citizens holding public offices, or to be State officers. Secondly, it is also talking about finding ways in which diaspora can be infused and incentivised to invest at home,” he said.

READ ALSO:   Kenyans in US have until June 19th to register for Huduma Namba

BY Nation

 

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Business

SPONSORED: Optiven Thanks Diaspora Community as Hundreds are offered fully Paid Holiday for a Record 6th Time

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Optiven Group has a vision of economically and socially empowering and Transforming the society. As a follow-up to this vision, hundreds of customers whose majority are from Diaspora were given a treat of the end of year at PrideInn Flamingo Beach Resort – Mombasa.

This offer was for all those who had invested during the promotion of Tujibambe Mombasani where one was to purchase and pay a property from 1.7M and above.

This was right on the heels of the prior campaigns as follows:

👉🏽Tembeza Mpenzi – Amboseli https://youtu.be/gdu935WbGcI

👉🏽Dinner with a LION – Maasai Mara https://youtu.be/9PKv6ljLAho

👉🏽Lipa CashTwende Mombasa SEASON 3 https://youtu.be/a8hper39wj0

👉🏽Lipa CashTwende Mombasa SEASON 2 https://youtu.be/ZdvPaEU8EY8

👉🏽Lipa CashTwende Mombasa SEASON 1 https://youtu.be/V80a-jaFZlk

Optiven is happy to bring these great customers together to network. Know each other & build a strong community

We now look forward to rewarding hundreds of customers who are catching up with our current campaign TAJIRIKA NA OPTIVEN APP campaign.

This campaign rewards customers who purchase land through the Optiven App. It also rewards those who refer others through the App. It is a win win as all parties benefit. This is actually giving every Kenyan globally to have a piece of Optiven.

👉🏽Tajirika Na Optiven App – https://youtu.be/2TGPRXffI28

Join the Optiven family today and keep enjoying our Philanthropic offers and give aways from time to time.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: You won't believe what this Kenyan man in US just did to his 'errant' dogs

Call us/ WhatsApp us on: +254 723 400 500
Website: www.optiven.co.ke

 

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