President Joe Biden, right, listens as Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, left, speaks during their meeting in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, Thursday, Oct. 14, 2021. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)
A US senator is calling on President Joe Biden to prioritise the fight against corruption, political violence and rising debt ahead of his meeting with Kenyan counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta, According to Daily Nation reported.
“I remain concerned, however, about deep government corruption, ongoing incidents of intercommunal violence in several parts of the country, and increasing debt to China,” he said.
“Kenya is also preparing for a contentious election with a potentially violent ethnic dimension in 2022.”
President Joe Biden host President Kenyatta at the White House on Thursday, a first meeting for the US leader with an African head of state since he took power in January this year.
Kenya faces violence in Laikipia that police say is fuelled by bandits. Kenya is also preparing for a General Election next year, with uncertainties surrounding the security situation after the vote. The previous two General Elections were followed by sporadic incidents of violence.
Kenya today, heavily indebted to China, is also ranked poorly on Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index. Ahead of the meeting, President Kenyatta’s family has also come under sharp focus for stashing cash abroad.
The Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta, his mother, sisters and brother, have for decades used foundations and companies in tax havens, including Panama, to hold assets worth more than $30 million (Sh3.3 billion) according to the documents, Two offshore companies were created during a period when Kenya was navigating transition from the regime of President Daniel arap Moi.