|Somali President meets Saudi King in his first foreign visit|
Somalia President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Above will make his first State visit to Kenya on Thursday ahead of a special IGAD summit on Saturday.
State House Spokesperson Manoah Esipisu said Kenya and Somalia enjoy warm and cordial relations founded on trust, cooperation and mutual interests.
“We share a common heritage and our views converge on many regional and international issues,” he said.
Adding: “Our common endeavour for durable peace, viable stability and sustainable development for both our peoples and region continue to underline the necessity for our mutual cooperation.”
“President Uhuru looks forward to robust multi-sectoral bilateral engagements and enhancing the existing partnerships in order to leverage on the existing opportunities therein,” he said.
Areas of cooperation identified in the Joint Commission include Security, Trade and investment, Civil Aviation, Education and Agriculture. Others are Resources sharing and development, Livestock Development, Fisheries, Tourism, Immigration, Labour and Health.
Esipisu pointed out that the President would speak on the importance of the technical teams involved to convene as soon as possible to review the implementation status of the Joint Commission for Cooperation, in particular, to conclude the proposed instruments of cooperation.
Key areas to be discussed by the technical teams include, MoU on Political Consultations by the respective Ministries of Foreign Affairs; Initiating measures to enhance cooperation on immigration matters and development of a comprehensive border management system; Cooperation on police matters, including capacity building; and encouraging the private sector to explore the investment opportunities in both countries among many others.
The Spokesperson said President Uhuru will inform his guest of Kenya’s readiness to offer technical support and capacity building assistance to the Federal Government institutions and other sectors based on mutual agreement.
Other issues which President Uhuru will discuss with his guest include the need for Kenya and Somalia to approach the forthcoming 3rd London Conference on Somalia slated for May 11.
The Spokesperson also announced that Kenya will host an IGAD Summit on Saturday, whose focus would be on Somali refugees and the need to create a conducive environment for them to feel safe to go back and develop their country. He said the summit will also review other regional security matters, with a focus on South Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo and Burundi.
“Regional security is a matter that world leaders have expressed concern about and want to see Kenya remain in the pivotal role in terms of tackling these,” said Esipisu.