, NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 31 – Businessman Kamlesh Pattni has announced he has embarked on a mission to help the rural population get out of poverty.
Mr Pattni said he would work with local elders in respective communities to achieve his goal.
He said he would use his recent appointment as peace ambassador – which was given to him by the recently formed council of elders – to reach out to the rural folk in all parts of country.
"Kenya is a very rich nation. It is unacceptable to sit back and watch as people live in poverty yet they are not supposed to be poor," the businessman told a media briefing when he hosted the Secretary General of the Kings forum Tchiffe Jean who was in the country to meet fellow elders.
I will be able to help the people of this nation of ours, the whole idea of this organisation is to bring empowerment to the grassroots to alleviate poverty," he added.
Mr Pattni, who has vast business interests in various sectors said he would help the elders to realise the need empower their people in the grassroots.
"So, mine is to bring ideas of how to bring economic empowerment to these areas," he explained.
He said he was willing to "sacrifice a lot, for the sake of the rural folk who have suffered for a long time."
"That is why I got I touch with these leaders of the customary chiefs of Kenya. I chose the people who are rightfully the leaders at the grassroots so that they can we can work together. Mine is to advise them on economic development," he said.
The leaders’ forum which met at a Nairobi hotel drew representation from the Nchuri Ncheke, Luo Council of Elders, Kaya elders of the Coast Province among others.
Mr Pattni who is also the leader of the Kenda Party urged leaders to embrace peace in their respective communities to ensure Kenya remains a peaceful nation.
He said in the wake of the events that rocked the country after the General Elections of 2007, the country needed proper healing and reconciliation among the various communities.
Mr Pattni regretted that the country still remained divided despite the numerous initiatives that have been put to heal the country.
"I will be embarking on a peace building initiative. I am a preacher I will preach peace, there is need to live in peace. We are a peaceful nation," he said.
He added that the country still facing a myriad of problems ranging from famine and insecurity which calls for concerted efforts in addressing them.
"Let all Kenyans irrespective of tribe, age, religion colour, class or gender be united in addressing issues of famine, hunger, insecurity which threaten the fabric of the nation." Pattni added.
He also called on the country’s political leaders to show leadership during the momentous occasion in trying to deliver a new constitution for the nation.
Citing the conflicts in Somalia, Darfur, Congo and Northern Uganda, Mr Pattni warned that if the country’s leadership is wavering in delivering meaningful reforms the country risked going the same way.
"Look at what is happening in the Darfur region, Somalia and in our other neighbouring countries… surely, we can’t allow it to happen to Kenya ", Mr Pattni added.