Former U.S President Barack Obama’s homecoming to Siaya County will be a private family affair that the government will not be very much involved in.
Obama, who is expected in the country on Sunday, July 15 is set to meet President Uhuru Kenyatta and opposition leader Raila Odinga in Nairobi before flying to Alego in Siaya County to inaugurate the Sauti Kuu (Powerful Voices) Foundation Sports, Resource and Vocational Training Centre on Monday.
Addressing the media on Wednesday, Kisumu County Officials insisted that they have made enough preparations to receive Obama after his meeting with President Kenyatta and Mr. Odinga.
“We have been working together with organisers and members of the security team in Nairobi and Siaya to ensure everything goes accordingly. The residents of Kisumu will have the opportunity to see the event via live streaming that will be set up at Jomo Kenyatta Sports Ground while others will be watching the occasion from the Acacia Hotel,” said Achie Alai the Kisumu County Executive for Tourism.
“It is a private affair that the government will not be heavily involved in. We must respect Dr. Auma Obama’s request to give them their privacy as Obama visits and residents of Kisumu should adhere to that.”
Kisumu Deputy Governor Mathew Owili, who was also at the press briefing, expressed his joy at Obama visiting the region.
“It is not lost to us that Obama is an international brand that we must associate with. His decision to stop over at Kisumu is a clear testimony that our city is a globally desired destination,” said Owili.
After his brief appearance in his hometown, Obama will leave for South Africa where he is scheduled to stay until July 19.
During his period in South Africa, he will meet with President Cyril Ramaphosa, and also deliver the Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture under the theme; Renewing the Mandela Legacy and Promoting Active Citizenship in a Changing World.