President Uhuru Kenyatta on Monday evening highlighted four key things that stood out for him in the past year.
In his New Year message to Kenyans, the head of state admitted that 2018 was quite eventful but there were key takeaways either way.
Shunning divisive politics
The President noted that the nation showed unity (especially after the handshake) since the General Election had divided Kenyans along tribal lines.
He also spoke on how the world closely monitored the happenings but patriotism stood out.
“Never again should Kenyans fear for their lives because of politics. Last year, following a divisive and drawn out election period, we had fully developed a politics of division and discord…We demonstrated our greatness as a people when we came together, three months into 2018, to shake hands as leaders, as communities and as citizens.
“The resulting peace and calm is helping our economy return to stronger growth and has returned the focus to development for the sake of Kenyans,” he said.
Blue Economy Conference
President Kenyatta also touched on the benefits of hosting the first ever Blue Economy Conference, expressing optimism that it would bear fruits in 2019.
“At this unique meeting, virtually all governments in the world were represented alongside thousands of scientists, investors and researchers, all drawn to Nairobi to chart a new path of global opportunity and prosperity.
“It will lead to millions of new jobs all over the world, with many of them being created here in Kenya through the surge of interest in investment and engagement caused by our hosting of the conference,” he said.
Citizen participation in combating terrorism
The Head of State praised the nation for volunteering key information that led to the arrest of suspected terrorists, noting that this hugely disrupted their plots.
He urged Kenyans to remain vigilant in 2019 by reporting any suspicious activity to relevant authorities to ensure everyone is safe.
“Be aware of who is around you and do not allow terrorists or criminals to hide among us. Every citizen is required to protect our nation, our communities and our families,” he remarked.
Eliud Kipchoge’s Marathon World Record
The President revealed his elation at Eliud Kipchoge’s stunning performance to smash the World Marathon Record, saying this was a proud moment for the entire nation as it cemented its place on the world map as a giant in athletics.
He also reserved special praise for Harambee Stars who qualified for the African Cup of Nation after a 15-year wait.
“Millions of us will never get to break a world record in athletics or play professional rugby and be in a boxing championship fight. But we can all display the discipline and perseverance that will allow our talents to flower,” he remarked.
Successful national examinations
Both the KCPE and KCSE examination results were released a few weeks after candidates completed them and cases of cheating had been greatly reduced as compared to previous years.
Kenyatta applauded the efficiency in the education sector and called on universities and colleges to put in place stringent measures to ensure grades are awarded on merit.
“We must eliminate all corrupt elements in our education system so as to ensure Kenya regains its recognition as a country providing high quality globally competitive education,” he asserted.