President Uhuru Kenyatta has urged American institutions to support homegrown African solutions to address the governance challenges facing the continent.
Making Africa work for its people would also benefit the rest of the world, he said.
Speaking in Washington, DC, the President cautioned US institutions against pushing for democracy in a particular way, saying that the approach undermines the foundations upon which the concept was built.
African nations, he argued, should be allowed to engineer their own new approaches that support and extend democracy in line with their realities.
“It requires bringing more nuance to how we make judgments about politics and the resulting interventions by counties such as the US should undertake.”
He said Kenya was engineering its own solutions through the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI).
The President lauded the BBI, saying it had paved the way for a national conversation on how to deal with political, social and governance challenges.
“BBI is a Kenyan solution to a divisive political culture that has sparked an electoral crisis over the last 30 years.”
The Kenyan leader pointed out that BBI, which he initiated with his main challenger in the last presidential election in 2017, ODM leader Raila Odinga, was “needed for inclusivity to disorient the politics of extremism and division”.
He was addressing leaders of the Atlantic Council at a forum dubbed, ‘The Future of The US-Kenya Strategic Partnership’.
The Atlantic Council is an American Atlanticist international affairs think-tank founded in 1961, as a non-partisan institution aimed at galvanising the US leadership and engaging with the world to find solutions to global challenges.
“As a think-tank, you should delve deeper into the BBI process. It is not as simple as it looks. We have found a number of countries seeking to learn from it in trying to re-engineer their political and social contract.”
The President asked the super power to focus on exploiting the available business opportunities for mutual economic benefit.