Kenya PM winds up Germany tour

September 25, 2010 12:00 am

, HAMBURG, Sep 25 – Prime Minister Raila Odinga wound up his visit to Germany with a strong appeal to Kenyans living abroad to be proud of recent developments in their country and to invest at home.

The PM, who has been in the city of Hamburg, gave Kenyans and potential investors eyeing Kenya an assurance that there is hope for the country.

Referring to the passage of the new constitution, Raila told Kenyans living abroad that "this is a good time to be a Kenyan."

"Kenyans showed that like the phoenix, they can rise from the ashes. We voted overwhelmingly for change and gave ourselves one of the best constitutions in the world," the PM said.

Speaking about the by-elections held last Monday, the PM said results came out within hours after voting ended, a development once thought to be a preserve of established democracies.

The PM said the new constitution is a powerful tool to take Kenya to the next level.

"A new Kenya must emerge with the new constitution.

At meetings with German business executives and Kenyan citizens, the Prime Minister repeatedly used Germany\’s experience after the Second World War to deliver the message that Kenya will overcome its problems.

The PM told representatives of more than 60 firms at the Hamburg Chamber of Commerce that Kenya\’s recent experiences were similar to that of Germany after the Second World War.

"I know what Germany achieved after the war. When you look at Germany today, it is like Germany which suffered so much devastation was the winner in that war. I believe we can achieve this in Kenya," he said.

The PM regretted that negative ethnicity and corruption were holding the country back, but added that the new constitution could help the country deal with the two vices.

Once again citing Germany\’s experience, the PM said Kenya will overcome its divisions along tribal lines. He said Germans too were similarly divided along ethnic and regional lines.

"We still need to use wisely the little that we have. If we wisely invest in infrastructure, education and areas that will create jobs and manpower, we will move forward and this job must be done by our citizens and our friends," he said.

He expressed hope that the coming of the county governments will create positive competition between the different regions of the country.

At a meeting with executives of aero planes manufacturer Airbus Industries, Raila made a strong appeal to German businesses to invest in Kenya and help the country rise.

He asked the management of the firm to consider setting up some operations in Kenya to serve the East and Central Africa region pointing out that Airbus has only set up assembly units in northern and South Africa.

"Nobody knows that a nation can rise from ashes to greatness better than Germany. You rose from the ravages of the Second World War to become one of the largest economies in the world. I am confident that with the steps we are taking back at home, Kenya the giant is reawakening to claim its rightful position in Africa. I invite you to be part of the story of the rise of the new Kenya," he said.

The PM has been visiting the City of Hamburg where he opened the Kenya Business Day organised by the Kenyan mission in Germany and Afrika-Verein, the German-African Business Association.

The PM assured German investors that Kenya\’s stability is no longer in doubts after recent developments.

He returns to the country on Monday.


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