Kenya has made great strides, says Kibaki

May 26, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 26 – President Mwai Kibaki has reaffirmed that the country has achieved many milestones in recent years, particularly the passing of a new Constitution and urged Kenyans to recognise God\’s role.

President Kibaki noted that after about 20 years of searching for a new Constitution, God guided the nation into enacting the new laws last year.

The President, therefore, asked all stakeholders to focus on implementing the Constitution.

"I urge all stakeholders to join hands and engage in productive dialogue so that we can open a new chapter of prosperity for our country. Let us also say no to political sideshows that can slow the implementation process," the President said.

President Kibaki acknowledged that it was only through God\’s boundless generosity that the country had overcome some of the most intimidating challenges confronting the nation.

Read the President\’s full speech.

President Kibaki said:  "As we go before God this morning, let us thank him for the many successes we have recorded since we met here last year."

The Head of State made the remarks during the Ninth National Prayer Breakfast at the Safari Park hotel in Nairobi.

He appealed to Kenyans to offer sincere thanks to God for the many great things he had done for the country and asked them to seek not only his forgiveness for various shortcomings but also commit to walk in the path God has prescribed.

The President asserted:  "On this occasion, let us also present our petitions to God and seek His help and guidance in tackling the challenges that we continue to face."

Urging Kenyans to pray for God\’s guidance in the successful implementation of the new Constitution, the President noted that the new set of laws hold great promise for the nation.

He stated that the new laws will both recreate the character of the nation\’s social and political discourse while at the same time entrenching the rule of law as well as laying a firm foundation for the country\’s unity and prosperity.

The President said:  "It is, therefore, imperative that all Kenyans join hands in ensuring the successful implementation of the new constitution. I am happy to note that we are making good progress in this regard."

President Kibaki also expressed satisfaction that commissions crucial to the implementation of the constitution have so far been established particularly the Commission on the Implementation of the Constitution and the Commission on Revenue Allocation.

Moreover, the President noted that important Bills which seek to make operational the Supreme Court and the Independent Offices such as the Offices of Controller of Budget and Auditor General have also been approved.

In this regard, the President Kibaki called for productive dialogue among all stakeholders and avoidance of political posturing so as to open a new chapter of prosperity for the country.

The Head of State also called on Kenyans to turn away from the wicked culture of corruption, terming it one of the critical moral problems facing the country.

Said the Head of State:  "We must turn away from the wicked culture of corrupt ways if we hope to reap the blessings that God has promised."

With regard to increased cost of living, President Kibaki assured Kenyans that the Government will step up measures to cushion them from high commodity prices through tax cuts on essential goods such as fuel and kerosene.

"In particular, the increased fuel and food prices have resulted in a rise in the cost of living. This has made life difficult for many Kenyans. Let us thank God for the ongoing rains which will enable us realize a good harvest to meet our food requirements," remarked the President.

Among other positive developments that the nation has realised include the continued economic recovery, creation of more employment opportunities for the youth and unrivalled infrastructural development across the country, the President said.

Said the Head of State:  "After a dismal performance of 1.6 per cent growth in 2008, our national economy has consistently shown strong signs of recovery with all sectors recording positive performance last year."

"Overall, the economy recorded an economic growth rate of 5.6 per cent last year which is more than double the rate of 2.6 per cent recorded in 2009," the President stated.

Speaking during the occasion, chief guest, Lord Jonathan Atiken encouraged Kenyans to be patient and put God first, saying the country will emerge stronger despite the challenges it is currently facing.

"God and history teaches us that countries and individuals are strengthened when they go through adversity," Lord Atiken said.

On his part, National Assembly Speaker Kenneth Marende echoed President Kibaki\’s sentiments saying the new Constitution will take the country to the next level in development.

In this regard, Mr Marende reaffirmed Parliament\’s commitment to ensuring that no Bill relating to the implementation of the new Constitution fails to pass in the August house.

"The onus of implementing the new Constitution falls on all of us and I assure you that Parliament is playing its role in this endeavour," the Speaker of the National Assembly said.

The occasion was also attended by Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka, Prime Minister Raila Odinga, several Ministers, Assistant Minister, Members of Parliament and religious leaders among others.

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