Raila seeks US support on Kenya reforms
By Daily Nation Team
Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga is seeking US support in the implementation of the new provisions of Kenyaâ€™s Constitution.
Mr Odinga said he had put the election behind and was now focusing on ensuring a faithful implementation of provisions of the constitution.
According to a statement from his Press Secretary Dennis Onyango, Mr Odinga held discussions with senior US officials on the progress that Kenya has made since the last general elections.
Mr Odinga, who arrived in the US over the weekend, held talks with Assistant Secretary of State for Africa ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield at the US State Department in Washington, DC.
He also separately talked with the chairman of the Senate sub-committee on Africa and member of the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee Senator of the Senate Foreign Affairs Committee Senator Chris Coons of Delaware and Special Representative for US Global Food Security Mr Jonathan Shrier.
These talks focused on the implementation of devolution provisions in the constitution, regional security and strengthening of principles of democracy, the rule of law and reforming and strengthening Kenya’s key institutions including police and judiciary.
â€œWe are also keen to work with you in deepening institutional reforms in Kenya especially reform of the police, judiciary and other institutions of governance and we look up to this administration to walk with Kenyans in their dream of strengthening and institutionalising democracy, the rule of law, government accountability and national security,â€ Mr Odinga said.
SUPPORT FOR GOVERNORS
He also asked the US to support Kenya’s governors through training, capacity building and actual investments in various counties.
â€œWe need the administrationâ€™s support for our governors through training, capacity building, funding and, most importantly, by directing investors to our counties,â€ he said.
The assistant Secretary pledged continued support for Kenya on security, especially in the war against terrorism. She pledged support in hunting down those behind the attack at the Westgate Mall no matter how long the search lasts.
â€œThe Westgate Mall attack underscored vulnerabilities in the Horn of Africa and demonstrated that al Shabaab has a capable network in East Africa and is willing to carry out attacks outside Somalia,â€ she said.
Mr Odinga said there would be no opposition on matters of national security and government and Kenyans would stand together as one people.
The former PM appealed to the administrators of the Feed the Future program in Kenya to allow Governors to have an input on the agricultural initiatives being undertaken in their counties.
He appealed for stronger support for counties in arid areas, singling out Marsabit, Wajir, Garissa and Tana River.
Mr Odinga appreciated the focus the Feed the Future program has put on Kenya, but appealed for assistance to farmers in areas of training, provision of quality, drought resistant seeds and storage facilities.
Feed the Future is a US Government hunger and food security initiative, supports partner countries in developing their agriculture sector to spur economic growth that increases incomes and reduces hunger, poverty and under nutrition.
Mr Odinga later launched his autobiography at the Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, Maryland.