NAIROBI, Kenya, Apr 29 – Uganda\’s President Yoweri Museveni is this Saturday expected in Kenya where he will engage the youth and entrepreneurs on business and the opportunities available in East Africa.
The visit by President Museveni will be a non-state tour at the invitation of investment guru Aly-Khan Satchu through his Mindspeak Business Club.
Mr Satchu, who is the founder of Rich Investments, said getting the Ugandan president to attend Mindspeak had been a challenging task, as not many African presidents are known to be agreeable to directly taking questions from the citizenry.
However, three months of correspondence between the two finally bore fruit with the \’do you want another rap\’ hit-making the president agree to honour the invitation.
"I am quite aggressive and I don\’t give up easy. I had to use all kind of skills to get President Museveni to come to the forum," Mr Satchu said in an interview with capital News.
One of the tactics employed was a hand written letter, which was delivered to the president by Mr Satchu\’s friend and K24 Anchor Jeff Koinange when he had an interview with him in the run up to the Uganda presidential elections.
"Jeff delivered this letter to the president and apparently when he gave it the security got very nervous, but from that letter his people responded to me and said he would like to come," he said.
The once-in-a-lifetime forum will change venue from the traditional Silverbird Cinema at the Westgate to the Intercontinental Hotel to cater for the larger number of attendees as well as security. The number of guests will be limited to 300 people.
There has been scepticism about whether President Museveni would attend the public forum given events in his country, but Mr Satchu says, his protocol team has already arrived in the country.
"I have been concerned that I might build this whole thing up then he will be a no show. I can confirm that president Museveni will be here on Saturday 30 April," he said.
The event is scheduled to kick off at 10am with guests requested to be at the venue by 9am.
And are there any questions that President Museveni would not like to answer?
"When getting him to come I asked are there any red lines and they said no. so I\’m sure any questions that are asked will be answered," Mr Satchu said.
The idea of creating a platform to engage leaders came to the investment guru while in the United States attending Guy Kawasaki \’s Garage.com. It has taken him three years to build Mindspeak to the stature of even inviting sitting heads of state to engage with the public.
President Museveni\’s attendance obviously sets the bar high for the Mindspeak, but the list of A-list guests who have shown interest in attending is staggering.
"I have got some big invitations out there. President Kagame has said he is willing to come, the richest man in Africa who I met a few weeks ago Alhaji Aliko Dangote has also said he would like to come. I have sent an invite to Bill Gates I\’m waiting for a response," he said adding he was shooting for the sky given there was no other business club in Africa.
Previous guests on Mindspeak include Safaricom CEO Bob Collymore, the Apprentice participant Liza Mucheru-Wisner and former KDN boss Kai Wolff.
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