Biden sends officials to Ruto’s inauguration

BidenUS President Joe Biden

President Joe R. Biden has flagged off a Presidential Delegation to attend the Inauguration of President elect William Ruto on Tuesday.

The US trade representative Katherine Tai will lead the team, which includes the ambassador to Kenya Meg Whitman, Colin Allred, United States Representative, Texas and Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of African Affairs, U.S. Department of State Mary Catherine Phee.

Assistant Administrator for the Bureau for Africa, U.S. Agency for International Development Dr. Monde Muyangwa will also attend the event, the White House said.

A dozen of US Secret Service agents arrived on Saturday ahead of the event.

Plans for the event are complete with at least 20 Heads of State and government expected to attend at the Kasarani stadium.

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Interior Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho, a member of the Assumption of Office of the President Committee, said the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is already making protocol arrangements to handle the guests.

Kibicho said some 2,500 VIPs will grace the occasion, as he expressed satisfaction at the strides made by the men and women in uniform to steer the ceremony.

The 21st battalion of the Kenya Rifles will mount the function’s guard of honour.

“The preparations in as far as the infrastructure is concerned are well on time,” said Kibicho.

The PS told Kenyans planning to attend the ceremony they are welcome to do so and should be at the Kasarani stadium by 7am.

The gates for the 60, 000-capacity stadium will be open to the public from 4am.

The organisers said they are expecting supporters from various parts of the country.

“We’re expecting that we shall host here 60,000 Kenyans and 2,500 VIPs and VVIPs at the dais,” he said.

The VIP podium set aside for invited guests and visiting Heads of State numbering 20 from across Africa is already set.

Kibicho said that carpooling arrangements have been made with Kenyan VIPs to minimise traffic and a possible parking crisis.

“A lot of our VIPs have been gracious enough to agree that we do common pooling, and therefore we shall be announcing designated areas where these VIPs will be picked so that we use pooling services to make traffic a little lighter,” he noted.

The National Police Service (NPS) has also been directed to sufficiently deploy boots to secure the area.

Kibicho said both uniformed and non-uniformed officers will take part in ensuring Tuesday starts and ends without incident.

“We will be having in the vicinity of 10,000 police officers around here ensuring that there is order and that everyone is safe,” he said.

Merchandise and food vendors will also be allowed to do business in designated areas of the stadium.

“Between gate 11 and 12, we shall allow the small traders to come and do their businesses because 60,000 people here require certain services…we have a committee that has been set up to vet so that we don’t have inappropriate hawking,” added Kibicho.

It is not clear if President Uhuru Kenyatta will attend the event.

On Saturday, Chief of Defence Forces Gen Robert Kibochi personally rehearsed how the instruments of power will be handed over to the incoming president who will become the fifth president and Commander-In-Chief of the Armed Forces.

Officials said all East African Community (EAC) presidents are expected to grace the swearing-in ceremony at Kasarani Stadium.

They are Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni, Samia Suluhu Hassan (Tanzania), Paul Kagame (Rwanda), Évariste Ndayishimiye (Burundi) and Salva Kiir Mayardit of South Sudan.

Their advance teams are already in Nairobi.

Top representatives of the United Nations (UN), Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), Commonwealth, Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), African Union (AU) and European Union (EU) are also expected to attend the event.

About the Author

Moses Okitae
Moses Okitae Writes about Science stories, food security and human interest stories.

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