By: Dr. Shem Ochuodho
When Kenya gained its independence in 1963 it assumed control and management of its Foreign Policy, setting the pace for active participation in regional and international affairs. Since then, Kenya’s conduct of diplomacy has progressively evolved, driven and guided primarily by the quest to promote and protect its national interests.
The Kenya Diaspora Alliance has been championing the interests of Kenyans abroad in the wake of realities both at the domestic and external environment.
As a leading diaspora organization, KDA has been actively working towards fostering unity, empowerment, and development among Kenyans living abroad. We have consistently adhered to a code of ethics, transparency, and accountability in all our endeavors.
In realisation that there are several groups championing the interests of Kenyans abroad, KDA is a registered trust, and a federation of over thirty diaspora organizations with a nominal combined membership of about 250,000 Kenyans across the globe. KDA’s affiliated memberships include: welfare, cultural, religious, political, philanthropic, educational, professional and business associations, among others.
We acknowledge the existence of various interest groups in the diaspora championing interests of Kenyans in their various ways. Our organisation has recently been accused of serving self-interests. We vehemently deny these claims as false, baseless, and malicious attempts to tarnish the reputation and integrity of our organization.
Most allegations made against KDA lack factual evidence and have not been substantiated in any manner. We are urging the public and the media to exercise caution and refrain from spreading unverified information that could cause harm to our organization’s reputation.
KDA has always been committed to promoting the interests of the Kenyan diaspora, facilitating investment opportunities, supporting community initiatives, and engaging in constructive dialogue with the relevant authorities in Kenya. We have a proven track record of delivering positive outcomes for our members and the communities we serve.
We want to assure our members, partners, and stakeholders that KDA remains fully dedicated to our mission and values. We will take all necessary legal actions to protect our reputation and hold accountable those responsible for spreading these defamatory allegations.
We urge anyone with genuine concerns or queries to reach out to us directly through our official communication channels. We are open to addressing any issues transparently and working towards resolving them in a fair and constructive manner.
KDA appreciates the ongoing support and trust shown by our members, partners, and the Kenyan diaspora community. We remain resolute in our commitment to serve and advocate for the welfare of Kenyans living abroad.
Currently we are involved in discourses with both government and the private sector on diaspora involvement on Sustainable Development and their enhanced role and contributions particularly on emerging issues such as Climate Change, Oceans and Blue Economy and the quest for the reforms on diaspora civic participations to ensure equity and fair representation.
We at KDA ask all Kenyans abroad to support us in this noble course as we represent their diaspora interests in their pursuit to expand their footprints in all regions in the globe following growing strategic interests.
Last year our annual diaspora homecoming conference attracted over 500 participants in person and thousands attending virtually from all across the world. Hundreds of thousands more watched the event over the next few weeks through online channels. Over 100 organisations have exhibited at the event since inception, including some doing so virtually using cutting edge technology.
This year we are looking forward to an even bigger event with many more attending in person and even several more virtually as we perfect our digital engagement and experience.
The writer is the chairman of Kenya Diaspora Alliance.
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