Newly elected Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta 52, might be relatively young as far as African presidents go but he has a much younger weapon in his arsenal. Julie Wangombe, is only 22 and describes herself as a “spoken word Artist”. She however does more than “speak the word”; she knows how to manipulated the English Language like any Charles Dickens or Shakespeare.
She is presently an undergraduate student at Duke University and reading International Comparative Studies, a fit subject considering that she has already featured in a TED sponsored talent search and presented a well balanced Pan African poem you can watch here. The audience rose and applauded her at the end of her recitation. She is self employed (personalized speech writing services) but I guess the new Kenyan president might now hire her services permanently. In this second talk, she dispels the myth like Nigerian author Chimanmanda Adichie that Africa has only one single story
Uhuru Kenyatta after victory
trial At the ICC.
She has performed in high profile functions attended by the high and mighty like former Nigerian president Olusegun Obasanjo, African Development Bank president Donald Kaberuka. Comcraft Group Chairman Mr. Manu Chandaria and many other influential personalities and she just know how to perform!
Her skills and expertise tells you a bit about what she has managed to achieve in just 22 years- editing, research, public speaking and policy analysis.
We decided to profile her because she embodies everything we have been saying here at Iroko, Africa has the human capacity, abilities and talents needed to compete around the world, we just aren’t selling our talents well enough.
Since it is still very relevant, this is the very reconciliatory acceptance speech she wrote for president elect Uhuru Kenyatta;
My fellow Kenyans, thank you. Thank you for all your patience and your support along the way Asanteni Sana. I thank God for sustaining us and for bringing us this far. I thank all those who have remained vigilant in prayer for our nation during this time. I want to thank the people of the republic of Kenya who have shown patience over the last few days as we all awaited the outcome of this election. I thank the thousands of officials who worked with the IEBC to make this, the most free and most fair general election in our nation’s history. Despite the challenges that you faced, you managed to keep the trust of Kenyans and to do your job professionally. While we look forward to a day when electoral results are relayed in real-time to curb anxiety, we acknowledge that every process can be refined and I pledge to give you my support as you seek more efficient ways to conduct future elections.I would also like to acknowledge and thank the police and all security agencies for their diligence and commitment to ensuring security.I would especially like to acknowledge the police officers who lost their lives on the eve of the elections. They made the ultimate sacrifice, laying down their lives,in the name of democracy. To their families, I offer my sincere condolences for your loss and I assure you that I, and the people of Kenya are standing with you in prayer.
The incidents that took the lives of our officers are a reminder that security remains one of the biggest challenges in our nation. It is unacceptable to see such violent and unnecessary loss of life. As we move forward, I pledge to meet all threats to our national security with the full force of Kenya’s resources and with utmost urgency. To the Kenyan media – you have shown remarkable responsibility as this country’s fourth estate. You have shown sensitivity in the dissemination of news and impartiality in your treatment of the results. You have no doubt helped to keep the country calm.We are grateful for this, and we will continue to consider you our true partners as we embark on our journey.To the presidential candidates – I salute you all.You have contributed to ensuring a robust democratic process. I in particular want to single out my brother, Raila Odinga, for his spirited campaign.
I know that all the candidates have made tremendous personal sacrifices for the progress of our country and today, I welcome them to join us in moving our nation forward. My fellow Kenyans today, we celebrate the triumph of democracy; the triumph of peace; the triumph of nationhood. Despite the misgivings of many in the world- we demonstrated a level of political maturity that surpassed expectations. We dutifully turned out; we voted in peace; we upheld order and respect for the rule of law and we maintained the fabric of our society. That is the real victory today. A victory for our nation. A victory that demonstrates to all that Kenya has finally come of age. That this, indeed, is Kenya’s moment. I am honored and humbled that in a free and fair election- you, the people of Kenya, have placed your trust in me- to lead our nation as your next President. I am here because of you. I am here because of the unyielding support of millions of Kenyans, from all walks of life, from every corner of our nation, who sacrificed their time, energy and resources to make this campaign a success.
Thousands of you volunteered through Team Uhuru. Hundreds of you mobilized through grassroots organizations. Hundreds of you campaigned through your university associations and millions of Kenyans across the nation engaged us through our various online platforms. Throughout this process you, the people, have remained unwavering in your belief not only in me – but in the possibility of a stronger, more prosperous Kenya. A Kenya that has room for all our hopes and aspirations. Last but not least, I am here because of my family: My wife, Margaret; our children and all the members of my family. However, this is has never been about me, this has been about you- about the people of Kenya. You have put your faith not in one man , but in a team. In our Deputy President – Elect: Hon William Ruto. A man with a proven trackrecord, who has demonstrated to all of us, his ability to both speak and act with un-matched zeal and energy. You put your trust in my sister, Charity Ngilu and my brother, Najib Balala both of whom have remained committed to serving the people and putting our nation first.
You put your trust in TNA, URP and the wider Jubilee family And because you gave us this trust, I am proud to say that the majority of women who were elected to parliament come from the Jubilee Coalition – a fact that demonstrates this teams commitment to supporting women and to supporting the full implementation of all the provisions within our constitution. I want to say to all the Jubilee aspirants- those who won, and especially, those who did not – you have done your parties, and this coalition- proud.Your dedication, to the ideals that the Jubilee Coalition represents has been an inspiration to me. We came together as a team, and we will continue to work together as a team- for the good of all the people of Kenya. However , today is about more than one Coalition or Party.
It is about all Kenyans: those of you who voted Jubilee and those who did not. My fellow Kenyans, My pledge to you is that as your President, I will work on behalf of all citizens regardless of political affiliation. I will honor the will of Kenyans and ensure that my Government protects their rights and acts without fear or favor; in the interests of our nation. To all those who won various seats –regardless of what party or coalition you may belong to – let us remember that we are , first and foremost, Kenyans, and that the people have bestowed upon us the responsibility to work for them. I extend a hand of friendship and cooperation to you so that together, we can truly serve the Kenyan people.
In the nearly 5 decades since independence, we have made great strides as a nation. Kenya has experienced huge success but there have also been enduring problems In the last 10 years, under the Presidency of Mwai Kibaki we have begun to overcome many of our national challenges. We are indebted to his leadership and grateful for the services he has rendered to our country. As I assume office, my task, and the task before us all is to secure the gains we have made while focusing on solving the challenges that remain.
My fellow Kenyans, the elections are now over. Today, in itself, is not an end ; it is a beginning and there is much work to be done. That work begins with all of us taking personal responsibility for the future of our country- the inheritance our children.
For those who are celebrating let us be modest in victory. To those who voted for any of my opponents – let us keep in mind the broader victory of Kenya, and continue to uphold peace. Let us remember that while, in a democracy, some contestants must, inevitably, lose – the citizens of a country never do. In this election, every vote mattered and from this moment, every voice that contributes to the national dialogue- will be heard. Fellow Kenyans, our duty now is to return to our lives. To return to our jobs, our businesses; our farms – and continue making the daily decisions that will transform Kenya. I promise to do my part, but I need every Kenyan to play their part as well. To our brothers and sisters in the region and in Africa as a whole we appreciate your support and encouragement before, during and after the elections. This is the true spirit of Africa.
We look forward to playing our rightful role in the region and in the continent. The African star is shining brightly and the destiny of Africa is in our hands. To the nations of the world I give you my assurances that I and my team understand that Kenya is part of the community of nations and while as leaders we are, first and foremost, servants of the Kenyan people, we recognize and accept our international obligations and we will continue to co-operate with all nations and international institutions– in line with those obligations. However we also expect that the international community will respect our sovereignty and the democratic will of the people of Kenya.
Indeed it is the desire of the people of Kenya to be a nation that is at peace with itself, at peace with her neighbors, at peace with our continent and at peace with the world at large. We will pursue this ideal – upholding the values enshrined in our constitution and continuing in the spirit embodied in the words of our national anthem Bless this our land and nation . Justice be our shield and defender May we dwell in unity, peace and liberty. Plenty be found within our borders.
Thank you, God bless you And God bless the Republic of Kenya.