Lindner tour of duty in Kenya ends

June 10, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jun 10 – The German Embassy in Kenya has confirmed that Mrs Margit Hellwig-Boette will succeed outgoing envoy Walter Lindner.

Mrs Boette has been a diplomat serving at the Berlin office in Germany. She will officially take after Mr Lindner in August this year.

Mr Lindner who was due to leave the country by end of July told Capital News that he will be posted to the Berlin office as a crisis co-ordinator for the Federal Republic of Germany.

“Wherever there will be crisis in the world, be it war, tsunami or any other problem I will have to coordinate the rescue operations. I will be doing this for I guess two years and then I will move on to some other ambassadorial posting,” he said.

Despite his departure he said he hoped to hear good news of Kenya working on the reform process as spelt out in Agenda Item 4 of the mediation talks.

“When I return to Berlin I will be happy to hear that Kenya has a new Constitution, a Special Tribunal, progress on the police reforms, although it looks like a long wish list, but I will be happy even if it will be half of it,” he said.

Constitutional, police, judicial, land and electoral reforms among others were the long term outstanding issues linked to the 2007 post election violence in Kenya.

The country is on its baby steps since it has just started electoral reforms with the formation of the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC).

Formation of a local tribunal to try the perpetrators of the post poll violence is pending after Parliament rejected the Bill for the creation of a local tribunal.

The Committee of Experts to work on a new constitution is also in place but the process seems to be facing similar hiccups as was in previous attempts with the Orange Democratic Movement and the Party of National Unity who are the main partners in the Coalition Government taking different positions on various contentious issues.

Mr Lindner together with his counterpart US Ambassador Michael Ranneberger have been some of the vocal diplomats in the country who have pushing the government to act faster on the reform process.

Mr Lindner said he will be liaising with his successor Mrs Boette to know the progress of the reforms.

He asked Kenyans and especially the media to keep the government on its toes to ensure the reform agenda moves forward.

The outgoing Ambassador also urged people to support the coalition government and the Members of Parliament and not to loose hope despite their failure to lead as expected.

He urged the political class to emulate good leadership values and to honour transparency and accountability.

Mr Lindner said it was sad that corruption had grown to a higher level and very little was being done to fight it.

“I really would hope this eating syndrome is really disappearing from the surface of Kenya.  It means non delivery of services; this is something that Kenya doesn’t deserve. They are good people and they need a better political class,” he said.

He also asked the rest of the diplomats in the country to support Kenya and speak out on issues that require pressure for the government to act.

Mr Lindner’s tour of duty in Kenya lasted for three and half years.


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