NAIROBI, Kenya, May 25 – “I tell you Mr President that some years down the line, I will occupy this residence.”
Those were the words of 14 year old Brian Toroitich alias Mr President when he introduced himself to President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House, Nairobi, a few nights ago.
“You see, Mr President, when I was born, Daniel Moi was the President and my grandfather named me Toroitich. People used to call me Brian Toroitich arap Moi,” Brian paused for effect, forcing President Kenyatta, who was listening attentively, to urge him on.
Brian was now clearly in control. He was articulate and confident of his delivery before his peers and President Kenyatta, who spent hours with a group of students on a mentorship program, listening to each of their experiences and stories of their background.
“Yes, Brian, go on,” the President encouraged him.
“When President Kibaki took over, they started calling me Brian Toroitich arap Moi Kibaki. And now that they have seen me here…” he paused again, and everyone in the room including the President and his daughter Ngina Kenyatta appeared to be transfixed, silently guessing that he might end with another appendage to his name.
But Brian defied the script. “Now Mr President, my name has become too long and they cannot add Uhuru Kenyatta and they call me Mr President.”
The Form One boy paused again to let the cheers and laughter subside and it was when everyone in the room became silent, with his gaze now fixed on President Kenyatta, that he made the declaration that he will one day be President.
The hall burst into electrifying cheers of encouragement and the pulse of excitement with the promise of the Kenyan youth was palpable.