NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 16 – “The American President Barack Obama is lucky to have two homes. His first home is the United States and the second one is Kenya,” says Dr Chris Kirubi who is among entrepreneurs and Kenyans at large looking forward to the Global Entrepreneurship Summit (GES) starting July 25 in Nairobi.
“Barack Obama’s father is 100 percent Kenyan. For heaven sake, a child is known to be from where the father originated because the father is the anchor of the family. He can belong to the world, but his gene came from Kenya,” he adds, welcoming Obama home as he prepares to convene global investors in Kenya.
This will be the first time GES to be held in Kenya and also the first time a sitting US President will visit the country.
“Getting the whole world focus on Kenya is not a small thing. Furthermore the focus will not be on the bad things that make people talk about us like when there are disasters, but we will be on the spotlight for the right reason. I mean that is not a small thing,” Kirubi says during an interview.
As among the leading industrialists in Kenya and Africa, Kirubi’s biggest expectation is that the true positive story of the country called Kenya will go out there, both through the visiting entrepreneurs and local investors during and after the summit.
But all said and done, Kirubi is one concerned man that even during such an important occasion for Kenya, politics and side shows are still occurring, taking big chunk of media reporting.
Kirubi has urged the media to try and pat attention to what Kenya will gain from the upcoming summit and take advantage of the global attention to market the country.
He argues that even as investors interact during the summit, the biggest responsibility lies with the media in helping showcase Kenya in the right way.
“Such are the times we have side shows to disrupt what will be taking place; things that do not put food on the table. The media should wake up and see this opportunity. We are very powerful and the world believes what we say,” he says, “This is not the time to start talking of things like media freedom; where else in the World do we have media freedom like here?”
Kirubi has also urged the Non-Governmental Organizations (NGOs) not to come up “with all manner of activities that may derail the main purpose of the summit.”
“NGOs should be bandwagons of development not just talk with no solutions at hand. We can’t keep promoting negative news. It makes us feel that we cannot do anything, like we are nothing, yet we have the greatest minds in Africa.”
And with much still not known about Obama itinerary and that of the summit, Kirubi says if given an opportunity to speak during the forum, he would inform the investors that Kenya is indeed “the destination they have been looking for. This is the place where we believe in and where you have come to visit, we produce the American President.”