Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What Obama can do for Kenya

This week marks the inauguration of Barack Obama as the 44th President of the United States of America. But despite the massive hope that Obama's presidency bring for Kenya, there is a growing scepticism about his ability or even willingness to assist his father's country of birth.

First, the US has enough problems on its own for Obama to focus on Kenya. In spite of his Kenyan roots, not only is Obama an American, as opposed to being Kenyan, he is the president of the United States. In addition to acting in the domestic interests of his people, other issues of priority would lie in the threats and opportunities provided by the Middle East and the economic crisis obliges the new president to confront the challenges that come with emerging powers such as China and India. When not engrossed on these issues, environmental concerns, democracy and the rule of law are likely to take up the president's time and attention.