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I couldn’t believe the exemplary customer service I was accorded at Kenyan Embassy In Washington DC – Maggie Marika

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BY MAGGIE MARIKA

Living in USA as a Diasporian with Kenyan roots means you will likely deal with the Kenyan embassy or consulate at some point in your American stay. Historically Ambassadors to the USA and the staff that execute their mandates has been a big bag of mixed apples. Sometimes we get bunch of good apples, other times bad apples fall through the cracks while at other times, it feels like there were no apples in Washington, DC, looking out for us.

Some we have loved others we did not care for.

When I scheduled my passport renewal at the DC Consulate on the very last possible day available to do the Renewal, I knew I had my work cut out for me. I braced myself for the eventuality of what would be a long cold day in Washington DC.

Silently blaming myself for waiting until the very last minute to make that trip. I would not be a true Kenyan if I did otherwise. We are Kenyans and work well under pressure. We are proud of our last minute mini crisis’ with deadlines.

That meant a bright and early flight from Atlanta to Baltimore where family was elated to see me, followed by a nice scenic drive to Washington DC.
The drive was uneventful as we finally arrived at the 2249 R Street destination where the Kenya Coat of Arms with the two beautiful yellow lions welcomed us alongside the two Kenyan flags that proudly waved us in. Seemingly saying “Jambo, Karibu Kenya.

Maggie Marika outside the Kenyan Embassy on R Street in Washington, DC. COURTESY PHOTO

Hakuna Matata.” The process was pretty straight forward. Check in on the computer desk, get a ticket 🎟 and read the informational instructions posted as the projector ahead displayed the number being attended to. The Embassy Officials systematically called people in when their numbers came up as well as walked around keeping us informed on what we needed in preparation for our appointments. They did not simply sit in an office and let your chips fall where they may. They assisted from the minute you walked through that door.

They issued folders to you to organize your paperwork, offered assistance to those that needed more attention with their documents, for instance, if you are elderly or needed assistance with computers as well as followed up personally your number was called and you did not go to the room instructed. They walked in to ensure you were not skipped.

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When my number was called I presented my paperwork where the friendly official explained what I needed. I needed some assistance to process a 66 page passport as opposed to the 33 page I initially applied for. The official was professional, patient and ensured my e-passport renewal was seamless. I was in and out of the Embassy in an hour. I was floored by the exemplary service I received today at the Washington DC Kenya Consulate.

We had a team working together efficiently, projecting willingness to help and going above and beyond to serve the Kenyans in the Diaspora. Of the many horror stories I have heard about the Embassies over time, today was not that day.

Let us give credit where credit is due and applaud 👏 them for a job well done. For that I say Thank You to our Washington DC Embassy staff for making it happen. Your exceptional service to myself and the many Kenyans that you serve is much appreciated.

Systems and processes do work when you have the right people executing them. Asanteni.

PS:

I later learnt that one of the gentlemen who was very kind is actually the new Immigration Attache, Mr Peter Karoki. Thank you Sir, and welcome to the United States.

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