LOWELL, Massachusetts, Sept 27 – President Uhuru Kenyatta who is in New York where he attended a UN General Assembly meeting has challenged those calling for the constitutional amendment to tell Kenyans what they want changed.
The Head of State maintains that Kenya’s constitution is one of the most progressive in the world which needs to be implemented fully.
The President said those calling for a review of the Constitution should spare Kenyans the unnecessary costs and disruption of development.
“Leave our Constitution alone because it is the most progressive and let us implement it to benefit Kenyans,” the President said.
He spoke when he met Kenyans in the US who had invited him and the First Lady Margaret to a reception at the Lowell Memorial Hall.
The President said Kenyans struggled for a new Constitution since 1992 and want to see it implemented fully.
“We will overcome any challenges in the Constitution as we continue with its implementation and strengthen our institutions,” said the President.
He said Governors should explain to Kenyans why they need more money when they have been unable to utilise what was allocated to their administrations during the last financial year.
“Do you want more money so that you distribute it to your friends and cronies instead of building the right institutions and honestly serving the public?. Let us be serious,” the President said.
President Kenyatta said the public should ask those asking for a referendum why they want to change a Constitution, which is better in comparison to those of the strongest nations in the world and whose implementation started less than two years ago.
“You don’t change what has not been implemented just the same way you don’t start building a good house and destroy it when it is midway to build a new one,” he said.
President Kenyatta also took a swipe at Governors who are demanding for more financial allocations to counties.
He said the Governors were wasting time and resources agitating for more money when they have not even put in place the necessary structures in Counties for which they have been funded.
“First put the right structures in place, help to build the economy and provide Kenyans the services you are required to,” said President Kenyatta to a rapturous applause.
“The political class owes Kenyans an apology because it has not done what it is supposed to do,” he said.
He called on Kenyans to use their diversity as strength instead of using it negatively against each other.
He also told Kenyans to cherish the human capital of their country and asked those in the Diaspora to use their skills to support business back at home.
The President said instead of waiting for economic salvation through recently discovered petroleum resources, Kenya will continue harnessing its human resource capital, which has seen it compete effectively with other nations.
The Mayor of Lowell Rodney Elliot, who attended and addressed the meeting, presented a symbolic key to the city to President Kenyatta.
“We have many Kenyans who have made Lowell their home. We welcome you, we cherish you and we are happy to have you as part of the community here,” he said.
Mayor Elliot thanked the President for visiting Lowell and informed him that the large population of Kenyans in the town was making positive contributions.
The Mayor also congratulated First Lady Margaret Kenyatta for her efforts to improve maternal and child health as well as conservation of elephants.
The First Lady’s efforts to improve maternal and child health was also celebrated by other speakers pledging to continue supporting her ‘Beyond Zero’ campaign.
Ms Cathy Wachira, who was one of the speakers, invited the First Lady to participate in the Boston Marathon next year.
The First Lady thanked Kenyans in Lowell and other cities of Massachusetts including Boston for supporting her campaign and also requested them to provide more support for efforts to conserve elephants, which she is also championing.
The meeting was also addressed by Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Ambassador Amina Mohamed.