Azimio La Umoja presidential candidate Raila Odinga on Tuesday evening met UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s trade envoy to Kenya, Theo Clarke, and discussed areas of mutual interest between Kenya and the United Kingdom.
During the meeting, Raila implored UK to invest more in agricultural production in Kenya and also enhance trade and security.
During the meeting with UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s trade envoy to Kenya Ms Theo Clarke, Raila challenged UK to continue to partner with Kenya in efforts to revive the economy following the ravages of the pandemic.
“As we grapple with the aftermath of COVID-19 on the economy, we need to take this as an opportunity for economic renaissance,” he said.
He added, “We need to rebuild back better and ensure that the electioneering period does not disrupt the ongoing efforts to revive the economy.”
Raila said that, should he win the August election, he would enhance Kenya’s partnership with UK.
“Post election, as we re-imagine the future of our country, we will work hard to enhance strategic partnerships with friendly countries across the world; the United Kingdom being on of the of the key planks.
“Kenya and the UK have had a long-standing relationship, and being a member of the Commonwealth, there are opportunities to be harnessed in the trade and agricultural sectors as well as job creation.”
The meeting was also attended by 10 members from both the House of Commons and House of Lords at the British Parliament.
The Azimio La Umoja presidential candidate pledges to push for value addition under his administration to boost agricultural production.
“As I have said before, I will give special focus to value addition and I encouraged the UK to put more investment into agricultural production in Kenya and not just importing raw materials from us.”
He also made a case for more Kenyan skilled labour being exported to the UK to fill huge job gaps.
“Currently, the UK has 1 million unfilled job opportunities and are looking for people to occupy them. In my campaign for election, I promise to invest in skills development and technical training to expand our capacity to export labour."
The meeting was held at the British Parliament’s House of Commons and was attended by 10 members drawn from both Houses.
Raila was flanked by Charity Ngilu, Junet Mohamed, Peter Kenneth and Kenya’s High Commissioner to UK, Amb Manoah Esipisu.