Kenya has announced that nationals of all African countries will now receive visa upon arrival in Kenya. The pronouncement was made by President Uhuru Kenyatta in his inauguration speech for his second term. "To underscore Kenya's commitment, this shall not be done on the basis of reciprocity," Pres Kenyatta noted.
Africans now wishing to visit Kenya will not need to worry about getting their visa in advance. President Uhuru Kenyatta pronounced that all Africans will get a visa at points of entry when they arrive in the country.
He made the statement during in a speech at his inauguration for a second term in office at the Kasarani Stadium. Kenyatta said he hopes that other African states will open up their borders to allow free movement.
"I am directing that any African wishing to visit Kenya will be eligible to receive a visa at the port of entry. To underscore Kenya's commitment, this shall not be done on the basis of reciprocity. The freer we are to travel and live with one another, the more integrated and appreciative of our diversity, we will become," he said.
Delighted by Pres @UKenyatta's announcement to issue visas at arrival for all Africans visiting Kenya. Congratulations on this historic decision! I urge all African states that have not yet done so, to take similar measures towards free movement for all Africans across Africa.
- Moussa Faki Mahamat (@MoussaFaki_M) November 28, 2017
He further stated that members of the East African community would no longer need work permits to conduct their business and even live in the country. They will only need to present their identity card.
"As a mark of our continued commitment to you, our Brothers and Sisters in the East African Community; from today, you will be treated like Kenyans. Like your Kenyan brothers and sisters, you will need only your identity card. You can now work, do business; own property, farm and if you wish, and find a willing partner, you can marry and settle in Kenya," he added.
Kenya will now join Rwanda, which already opened its borders to all Africans and recently revised its policy to make the country global visa-free starting January 2018.
The Passport Index ranked the Kenyan passport 60 on the Global rank and 120 on the individual rank, with 39 countries able to visit the country without a Visa and 29 countries to get a visa on entry.
President Kenyatta's announcement is in accordance with the African Union (AU), which has been encouraging member states to promote free movement of Africans across the continent. The AU, on the Agenda 2063, has included as part of its aspirations "An integrated continent, politically united, based on the ideals of Pan Africanism and the vision of Africa's Renaissance."