Obama Hails Spirit Of Enteprenuership In Africa

US President Barack Obama said Saturday “Africa is on the move”, as he praised the spirit of entrepreneurship at a business summit in Kenya during his first visit to the country of his father’s birth since his election as president.
“I wanted to be here, because Africa is on the move, Africa is one of the fastest growing regions in the world,” Obama said.

“People are being lifted out of poverty, incomes are up, the middle class is growing and young people like you are harnessing technology to change the way Africa is doing business.”
US President Barack Obama gestures while giving a speech during the Global Entrepreneurship Summit at the United Nations Compound in Nairobi on July 25, 2015. The sixth annual summit will highlight investment, innovation and entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan Africa.
US President Barack Obama gestures while giving a speech during the Global Entrepreneurship Summit at the United Nations Compound in Nairobi on July 25, 2015. The sixth annual summit will highlight investment, innovation and entrepreneurship in sub-Saharan Africa.

The US embassy itself warned the summit could be “a target for terrorists”, but President Uhuru Kenyatta said the event showed a different side to Africa than that often portrayed in the media.
“The narrative of African despair is false, and indeed was never true,” Kenyatta said.
“Let them know that Africa is open and ready for business,” he added.
Obama arrived in Kenya late Friday, when Kenyatta greeted him as he stepped off Air Force One.
“It is wonderful to be back in Kenya,” Obama said.
“I’m proud to be the first US president to visit Kenya, and obviously this is personal for me. My father came from these parts.”
Obama is linked to his Kenyan family via his father Barack senior, a pipe-smoking economist who Obama has admitted he “never truly” knew. He walked out when Obama was just two and died in a car crash in Nairobi in 1982, aged 46.
A massive security operation was under way in Nairobi, with parts of the usually traffic-clogged capital locked down and airspace also closed for the president’s landing late Friday and his scheduled departure late Sunday for neighbouring Ethiopia.
Top of the list of security concerns is Somalia’s Al-Qaeda-affiliate, the Shebab, who have staged a string of suicide attacks, massacres and bombings on Kenyan soil, including an attack on a university in April that killed 147 students.
Obama said he had seen big changes in Kenya’s rapidly growing capital Nairobi since his last visit around a decade ago, saying it looked “pretty different” and praising the “incredible progress”.
Also the Kenyan media were awash Saturday with coverage of Barack Obama’s first visit to his father’s homeland, with the US president waving from one front page headlining “Kenya Here I Am”.
Hours after he landed in Nairobi on the first leg of a two-country Africa tour, large chunks of all the major newspapers, and long stretches of television programming, were devoted to coverage of Obama’s visit.
Crowds had gathered in the dark along the road from the airport to the city centre to cheer as the US presidential motorcade passed by after Obama arrived on Air Force One at 8:00 pm (1700 GMT) Friday.
Obama’s Kenyan half-sister, Auma Obama, accompanied him in his armoured limousine, nicknamed “The Beast”.
Obama was due to give his first public address on Saturday morning at the opening of the Global Entrepreneurship Summit at Nairobi’s large UN compound.
An editorial in The Nation spoke of the “Obama phenomenon” and called on Kenyans to be inspired by his example of “the boundless possibilities open to us as individuals and as a nation.”
“If there is one important outcome from the presidential visit, it is that we can, indeed, stand above all the little schisms that all too often turn us against each other,” the editorial said, in a reference to the country’s deep ethnic divisions that came to the fore during election-related violence seven years ago.
The Star took a similar tone, saying political differences should be set aside.
The Standard urged Kenyans to “embrace entrepreneurship” and hoped Obama’s visit would have economic benefits for the country.


Source: Guardian Ng

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