23 November 2017

Kenya: Over 20 Heads of State Expected to Attend Kenyatta's Swearing-in Ceremony

Photo: Kanyiri Wahito/Daily Nation
Chief of Defence Forces Samson Mwathethe inspects a guard of honour as the military prepares for the swearing-in of Uhuru Kenyatta at Kasarani on November 22, 2017.

Nairobi — Over 20 Heads of State have confirmed their attendance in next week's President Uhuru Kenyatta's swearing-in ceremony at Moi International Sports Centre, Kasarani Stadium.

Government Spokesperson Eric Kiraithe said the list of those expected to grace the event was likely to increase saying the government had dispatched invites to various Heads of Government who are yet to confirm their attendance.

"On Tuesday next week we expect a number of high profile guests, preparations are still underway even as we prepare the final list of dignitaries who will grace the event," said Kiraithe on Thursday during a media briefing.

Kiraithe dismissed claims that the government was soliciting congratulatory messages for Kenyatta after the Supreme Court upheld his re-election in the 0ctober 26 presidential poll that was boycotted by the Opposition leader, Raila Odinga.

Kiraithe said that it did not matter whether the congratulatory messages were sent, instead noted that what was of great significance was the fact that Kenyatta was rightly elected and that the highest court in the land endorsed his re-election.

"If you have gone through the Constitution and you have gone through the due process making one to ascend into an elective post, even if nobody congratulates you it is immaterial. The government of Kenya does not have that kind of inferiority complex that would make us solicit for congratulation messages," said Kiraithe.

An Official from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Protocol's Office told Capital FM News on Thursday that more confirmations were being received and that the final list would most likely be out by Friday evening.

Preparations at Kasarani Stadium are still underway with the Assumption of Office of the President Committee overseeing the preparations assuring that all will be set before the big day.

On Wednesday, Chief of Defense Forces Samson Mwathethe led the military in a full dress rehearsal through what will be expected of them when Kenyatta will be sworn into office next week Tuesday.

The oath of office will be administered by the Chief Registrar of the Judiciary Anne Amadi and witnessed by Chief Justice David Maraga.

The oath will be followed by a 21-gun salute, a tradition practiced by the military to welcome a new President in this case Kenyatta who will be taking his oath of office for a second and final term in office.

The ceremony, by law, should happen in public not earlier than 10am, and not later than 2pm.

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