On December 7, 2023, H.E. President Dr. William Ruto sent off the newly appointed Ambassadors, High Commissioners, Consuls General and Deputy Heads of Mission to their respective countries of accreditation on December 7, 2023.
In his address to the envoys, the President urged the diplomats to forge connections, create networks, and speak out on behalf of Kenya’s interests overseas. He encouraged the ambassadors to look for fresh overseas business ventures for Kenyans and market the country as a desirable location for investments.
The 41 Diplomats undertook a three-week induction training conducted by the Foreign Service Academy (FSA) led by Director General, Amb. Kirimi Kaberia. The program was aimed at equipping the envoys to manage their future role as foreign representatives and promote Kenya’s image abroad.
In his keynote address during the induction opening ceremony, Principal Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Dr. Korir Singoei, commended the diplomats on joining the Foreign Service at a very momentous time for Kenya saying the induction would help them serve and transform Kenya’s diplomatic landscape in pursuit of the country’s strategic interest and globally.
The extensive training curriculum under the general theme of “Understanding our Country’” covered a wide range of diplomatic topics breaking down the country’s history, profile, environment, values and interests as well as day-to-day management and operations of missions abroad.
On December 1, 2023, following the conclusion of the induction program, the envoys took part in a diplomatic golf clinic and tournament held by Thika Greens Golf Resort. Later, they took part in a Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) project at Ng’ate Primary School in Murang’a County.
In his address during the CSR event, Amb. George Orina, the Chief Guest and Ambassador-Designate to Ethiopia, emphasized the value of education and pushed students to put in more effort. He underlined how education has the capacity to advance people’s career.
As part of the induction program the Diplomats toured the Konza Technopolis City in Makueni County on December 4, 2023. The delegation was received by the Chief Executive Officer, Mr. John Paul Okwiri and Konza staff who made presentations to the diplomats and undertook a site visit of the facilities to promote investment opportunities in the smart city.
The purpose of the visit was to enlighten the new envoys on the investment and technological opportunities that Konza Technopolis holds as a key flagship project of Kenya’s Vision 2030 economic pillar and part of H.E. President William Ruto’s BETA Plan under the Digital Superhighway Agenda that seeks to transform Kenya’s digital landscape to generate employment and grow the GDP.
The envoys were encouraged to promote Kenya, especially Konza Technopolis as an investment hub that offers an array of opportunities for investors. In line with H.E. President Ruto’s climate change conservation initiative to grow 15 billion trees by 2032, they planted trees at the Konza Park.
Later, the envoys were hosted by the Kenya Airways Group (KQ) Management, led by the Group Chief Executive Officer, Mr. Allan Kilavuka, for a tour and roundtable meeting at the Kenya Airways Pride Center on December 5, 2023. The collaborative initiative by the Foreign Service Academy was themed – ‘Building Bridges for Beneficial Strategic Engagement between Kenya Airways Group and Kenyans Missions abroad’.
The roundtable discussions focused on areas of possible collaboration that would contribute to the positioning of KQ as a globally competitive airline, in line with the Economic Pillar of Kenya’s Foreign Policy. KQ was applauded for being a leading regional airline and for greatly promoting Kenyan economic interests in Africa and beyond.
The diplomats were hosted by the Director-General United Nations Office at Nairobi (UNON), Zainab Bangura for a brief and tour of UNON in Gigiri, Nairobi on December 6, 2023.
The Director-General UNON congratulated the diplomats on their appointment and shared a brief on UNON’s history, future and significance globally and in Kenya. She emphasized the importance of supporting the United Nations (UN) presence in Kenya which is the only UN headquarters in the global south as well as the only UN duty station that is not only growing in population but also in terms of budget in its role as a service provider to 158 countries and 180 UN duty stations.
Bangura underscored the key role that Kenya and the Ministry of Foreign and Diaspora Affairs plays in supporting and facilitating UNON through cooperation and advocacy.
In his vote of thanks, Amb. George Orina, shared his appreciation with the Director-General for positioning UNON as an important UN Station in the World. He pledged that the Delegates would work hard to advocate for UNON globally and position Nairobi as a vital multilateral hub.