By Rocky Asutsa
Kenya’s Ambassador to the U.S. Robinson Githae pledged to ensure the interests of Kenyans living in the U.S. He made that promise during celebrations to mark 51 years of Kenya’s independence at the ambassador’s residence in Maryland, affectionately called Kenya House.
“During my tenure, I hope to work closely with you to ensure that your interests are well represented, that you are well facilitated and that the full benefit of Kenya’s hardworking, enterprising, well-educated and patriotic diaspora is felt back at home,” Githae said.
The celebration attracted 200 Kenyans from all walks of life living in the Washington area. These included students and professionals. The crowd also featured friends of Kenya. The occasion helped some of them learn a few things about Kenya.
“I was reminded today that Lupita comes from Kenyan parents. Also, she was born in Mexico. I was also reminded of President Barack Obama’s ancestry. It was nice to see pictures of his visit to Kenya.” Dawne Young, a marketing and media consultant, said.
Lupita Nyong’o is a Kenyan-Mexican actress famous for her role in the film “12 Years a Slave.” She won an academy award for best supporting actress for her role and has been named the most beautiful woman by People magazine.
“The ambience was good. Enjoy great food and good company. I had a chance to meet people I hadn’t seen in a long while,” Kwamboka Omwenda, A U.N. Foundation staff member, said.
The party featured a band playing Kenyan music. Guests included ambassadors and the dean of the diplomatic corps.
“It was very enjoyable. I thought it was an engaging speech. It is key for the development of Kenya to engage other world powers, not just the U.S.,” Richard Brennan, an international business development consultant, said. “I always love kachumbari and nyama choma.”
Kachumbari is the Kenyan version of salsa, and nyama choma is roast beef.
The ambassador urged Kenyans in the U.S.to register and apply for new-generation national identity cards. This will help to ensure they will be able to vote in the 2017 elections. He noted that more U.S. firms are investing in Kenya.
“I will endeavor to work closely with business organizations to ensure that even more Kenyan products enter the U.S. market and conversely, more U.S. firms join Coca-Cola, General Electric, Google, IBM, Proctor and Gamble and Honeywell, who have invested in Kenya,” Githae said.