Rt. Hon. Raila Odinga, Kenya's PM, visits Belgium in March 2012 08/03/2012
The Rt. Honourable Raila Odinga, Prime Minister of Kenya, is on a three-day visit to Belgium (7-9 March 2012) where he will attend the Crans Montana Forum on Africa. The Crans Montana Forum started its activities in 1986 and has organized numerous prestigious activities around the world, providing governments and companies with an efficient networking platform. Since 2004, the Crans Montana Forum has been organizing a very successful Political and Economic Forum devoted to Africa and the Arab world, in the framework of the new international economic relations based on South-South Cooperation (South America, Africa, Arab states and the Far East).
This year’s Forum will host top-level decision makers from around the world, to address challenges of the Arab-African cooperation, their respective role on the international stage, the new synergies of common development, the issue of natural resources and growth, and also the new role of Europe.
The Rt. Hon Prime Minister paid a courtesy call to the Kenyan Embassy and met with members of staff. H.E Mr. Kembi Gitura, Ambassador, welcomed the Prime Minister and his delegation by giving them a brief on relations between Kenya and Belgium, Luxembourg and the European Union.
The Rt. Hon. Prime Minister in his remarks noted that the Embassy remains one of Kenya’s most vital diplomatic missions, as it is strategically placed and is the face of Kenya to key partners which include the European Union, Belgium and Luxembourg. He spoke briefly on the Grand Coalition Government and highlighted its achievements. Firstly, he drew attention to progress made in the education and health sectors as well as in infrastructure development. Further, he reiterated one significant achievement of the Grand Coalition, which is the attainment of a new Constitution. He expressed his confidence in the Government, through parliament which has continued to work tirelessly to implement the new constitution, seeking to put in place necessary laws before the upcoming elections. In conclusion, the Prime Minister informed that reforms are ongoing.
H.E Mr. Kembi-Gitura hosted a cocktail reception in honour of the Rt. Hon Prime Minister at the Sheraton Hotel on 7 March 2012, where Kenyans in the diaspora had the opportunity to interact with the Rt. Hon. Prime Minister and his delegation. The Prime Minister spoke candidly, elaborating on the genesis of Kenya’s challenges and where Kenya should be. His expounded on his vision for Kenya, which is to achieve the Kenyan dream. The Kenyan dream is espoused in the Kenya Vision 2030: “to transform Kenya into a middle income country, providing a high quality of life to all its citizens by the year 2030.”
While in Belgium, the PM will meet international leaders, among them Mr. Herman Van Rompuy, President of the European Council, Mr. Janez Potočnik, EU Commissioner for Environment, and Mr. Jose Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission.