Our Collective Voices

I have been conducting some interesting work: selecting one candidate to represent the Kenya Diaspora at the upcoming Biennial Ambassadors/High Commissioners Conference in Nairobi, Kenya in July-August, 2009.

Just over a dozen of us were contacted by the Kenya Embassy in Washington, D.C. under three weeks ago. We were charged with nominating amongst us, Kenyans in the Diaspora (the US, Mexico and Columbia), ONE member of the Diaspora to participate in the conference. The original communique came from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Nairobi.

Exciting stuff. As a vetting committee member, I've especially enjoyed discovering our talented candidates and their commitment to moving Kenya's agenda forward.

My recommendations on who will make a candidate for the role include:

- an individual who is best able to represent the aspirations and needs of the Diaspora in such a meeting;
- an individual who is able to participate effectively in the meeting;
- someone who is an active member of the community;
- someone who is engaged in organizing the Diaspora to be a collective force;
- someone with the knowledge of the realities of those in the Diaspora and also challenges and opportunities back home;

Essentially, someone who is involved in efforts to organize Kenyans in the Diaspora for the greater good of those here and those back home.

This weekend, we complete the vetting process and then begin the "grooming" of the candidate. At that point, we will tap into larger communities to develop a think tank of sorts as we develop well thought-out views, topics of interest that encompass our aspirations as a Diaspora community, to be presented by the representative. I am interested to hear from those of you in the Diaspora; and I will keep you updated on our progress.


Mama Shujaa.

The Shady Taxi Driver will be continued on next post.


  1. I'd send you.

    Great stuff, I pray the 'politics' stays out of it.

  2. Sounds like an exciting process. Good luck in fitting the perfect fit and with opening up dialog across borders.

  3. Hi, Tamaku,

    You are right and I pray the same; 'politics' should not dominate to the point that wrong decisions are made.

    This is just the beginning, an opportunity to set the course for a solid relationship between the Diaspora community, the Kenya government and Kenyan society...You'd send me? Thanks. I'll go next time, maybe.


  4. Sasa, Ms. Bar B?

    I am honored to be involved in the process. It is exciting and I hope this will lead to a long-term deliberate head-hunting program to get our human resources and brilliance back into the fabric of Kenyan society. The brain drain has been going on too long...

  5. Hi Naijadude

    Yes indeed there are Kenyans in Canada. You are wondering why we did not look into the pool of talent there? The reason is, the request came directly from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Nairobi, to the Kenyan Ambassador Ogego in Washington D.C. who only has jurisdiction over the U.S., Columbia and Mexico.

    Thanks for stopping by and come again, Karibu Tena.

  6. Yeah, Kenyans in Canada. We've fallen victim to the Canadian obscurity in North America.
    However, I'm sure Mama Shujaa will give us a voice. I hope you represent.

  7. Hi, Mwistar,

    Y'all are not that obscure you know. It is said, Kenya and Canada enjoy very 'warm' relations.

    But you can count on me...given the opportunity, I will give voice to all Diaspora Kenyans' aspirations, concerns, expectations.

    Good to see you.

  8. It's great to know Kenyans in that diaspora work together unlike those in other parts that prefer to kill and backstab each other....it's sad to see people being deported or arrested thanx to fellow countrymen....
    Mama, I would send you too, hope the voting process doesn't involve any tribalism, or any other -ism that affects Kenyans

  9. Cee, we tried to make it as transparent as possible. We were blessed with a group of very professional Kenyans who were excited about the project. Now, we have turned our nominee's name in, and the final word will come from the Embassy, it seems... I too hope the process remains clean!

  10. Eh wena! Mama Shujaa! You make me homesick with those photos...and the words in your post about a visit back home.

    As far as the Biennial Ambassadors/High Commissioners Conference in Nairobi is concerned, who better to represent than you? Precisely what is needed – an intelligent, erudite and savvy woman who understands the Diaspora better than most. I truly believe - as do others who commented - that you couldn't be bettered as a representative. Go, Mama, go!

    That Chidi of yours is cuter than the cutest – what a fabulous clip to celebrate summer.


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