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A president in search of his roots

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US President Barack Obama offers more support to Africa as he begins visit to Kenya, his father’s homeland ….reports Asian Lite News

 U.S. President Barack Obama arrives at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, Kenya.
U.S. President Barack Obama arrives at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, Kenya.

The president praised Africa’s economic and business potential in a speech in Nairobi.

“Africa is on the move… People are being lifted out of poverty, incomes are up (and) the middle class is growing,” he told a Global Entrepreneurship Summit which was attended by a creamy layer of African business and political leaders including Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta.

In 2013, Obama launched Power Africa, an innovative partnership to double access to electricity in sub-Saharan Africa where more than 600 million people currently lack access.

During the U.S.-Africa Leaders Summit in 2014, Obama reaffirmed that Power Africa’s reach extends across all of sub-Saharan Africa and tripled Power Africa’s goals to work towards adding 30,000 megawatts (MW) of new, cleaner electricity generation capacity and increasing electricity access by at least 60 million new connections.

This is first visit to Kenya as President of the US. The trip has been described as a “homecoming” by Kenyan media, and crowds cheered Mr Obama’s motorcade as it travelled from the airport.

Africa needed to be a “future hub of global growth”, Mr Obama told young entrepreneurs and businesspeople, adding that governments had to ensure that corruption was not allowed to flourish.

 U.S. President Barack Obama arrives at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, Kenya.
U.S. President Barack Obama arrives at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, Kenya.

Mr Obama said Kenya had made “incredible progress” since his last visit.

“When I was here in Nairobi 10 years ago, it looked different from what it looks today,” he said.

Security is tight for Mr Obama’s visit with about 10,000 police officers deployed in Nairobi, major roads closed and US military planes patrolling overhead.

On his arrival at Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi, he was hugged by his half-sister Auma and later, at dinner, the president was joined by more relatives including “Mama Sarah”, who helped to raise his late father.

After his visit to Kenya, Mr Obama will travel on to Ethiopia where he will become the first US leader to address the African Union.

 

 

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