15 June 2012

Kenya: Queen's Diamond Jubilee Marked in Nairobi

She came as a princess but left as a Queen. That is the popular phrase that has often been used to mark the beginning of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II reign. Kenya has a very important connection to Her Majesty as it was at the Treetops Hotel in Nanyuki on Wednesday February 6, 1952, that Princess Elizabeth found out about her father's death and consequently her ascension to the throne.

In his first official function as the new British High Commissioner to Kenya, Dr Christian Turner hosted a grand party to celebrate the Queen's Diamond Jubilee at his residence in Muthaiga, Nairobi. There was a long line of diplomats who patiently stood in line to greet Turner who had earlier in the week presented his credentials to President Mwai Kibaki.

An elaborate marquee tent decorated in the Union Jack colours of red, blue and white had been set up in the garden where drinks and food were in plenty. Guests mingled and caught up as the Kenya Army Band and the Nairobi Chamber Chorus provided the entertainment. The latter had been part of the Jubilee celebrations in Windsor, England where they performed before the Queen.

In his brief speech which began with a greeting in Kiswahili, High Commissioner Turner said that he was "very happy to take up the posting in Kenya and looked forward to working with a diverse range of people from the worlds of business, politics, civil society, sports, media and diplomacy. The Diamond Jubilee makes 2012 an exciting year for the United Kingdom as well as the London Olympics and Paralympic games that we shall be hosting in the coming months." Dignitaries, diplomats, media, corporate elite, UK citizens all came out to enjoy the festive mood.

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