For all your business information, Trends and Tips from around the world.

Business in Focus is now published at For all your business information, Trends and Tips from around the world, Check out our new blog HERE |

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Hillary Clinton arrives for Kenya’s AGOA Summit...But is she really needed?

From the New York Times

NAIROBI, Kenya — Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton arrived in Kenya on Tuesday night at the beginning of an 11-day Africa tour and at a time when the American government is getting increasingly fed up with Kenya’s leaders....continues below

NEW: Hillary Clinton's Speech FULL TRANSCRIPT at The 8th Forum of AGOA Kenya 2009

Mrs. Clinton was whisked from the airport to her hotel in downtown Nairobi, which was under intense security by soldiers wearing bulletproof vests and enormous men wearing earpieces...continues below

Related Posts:
1. You can keep the "CHANGE." We don’t need another lecture... Kenya tells Obama admin.
2. CHANGE or we will act – Obama administration tells Kenya
3. Hillary Clinton receives ‘cold’ welcome in Kenya’s AGOA Summit
4. Hillary Clinton delivers speech to AGOA forum in Kenya
Her trip takes her through seven African nations, from Kenya to Cape Verde, and focuses on good government, trade and the bolstering of food security, all priorities that President Obama forcefully laid out during his quick visit to Ghana last month. She will meet with important commercial allies, including Angola and Nigeria, which export billions of dollars worth of oil to the United States. She will also wade into conflict zones like Congo, which continues to suffer and smolder from a decade-long civil war.

But the first stop will not be easy. Mrs. Clinton is ostensibly in Kenya to address the eighth annual forum on the African Growth and Opportunity Act, a piece of trade legislation that her husband, Bill Clinton, passed when he was president.

But she will inevitably be drawn into Kenya’s latest political crisis: what to do about the perpetrators of last year’s election-driven bloodshed. And more trouble may be brewing. Kenya faces a punishing drought, a food crisis, power cuts and ethnic militias mobilizing in the countryside, getting ready for a possible Round 2.

Last week, Kenya’s leaders decided to scuttle efforts to set up a special tribunal for the organizers and financiers of the election violence, which killed more than 1,000 people, putting forward a vague pledge to try perpetrators within existing institutions instead.

Some of the top suspects are high-ranking ministers, who are reluctant to set in motion any process that might put them behind bars. Many Kenyans are now calling their government of national unity the “government of national impunity.” Western nations, especially the United States, are losing patience, but at the same time, Kenya’s leaders seem to be getting annoyed by all the outside advice.
“The United States is deeply concerned by the coalition government’s decision that appears to indicate it will not pursue establishment of an independent special tribunal to hold accountable perpetrators of postelection violence,” the American Embassy said Tuesday. “Failure by Kenya to take ownership of the process of accountability at all levels will call into serious question whether the political will exists to carry out fundamental reforms.”

Last year, it was Mrs. Clinton’s predecessor, Condoleezza Rice, who applied the 11th-hour pressure on Kenya’s warring politicians and got them to sign a power-sharing agreement.

But on Tuesday, Kenya’s prime minister, Raila Odinga, blasted back and said at the trade conference, “We don’t need another lecture.”

He also blamed Western countries for creating Africa’s problems in the first place, saying many of the modern-day ills stemmed directly from colonialism.

No comments: