Uhuru calls for global effort in post-Covid war

Wednesday, December 9th, 2020 00:00 |
President Uhuru Kenyatta. Photo/PD/Kenna Claude

President Uhuru Kenyatta yesterday  underscored the need for closer collaboration between governments, development partners and international financial institutions in dealing with the harsh effects of Covid-19 pandemic.

Saying global bounce back will not be swift enough without the involvement of Africa, the President reminded development partners and international financial institutions to support African governments in their post Covid recovery plans.

“There cannot be a global bounce back that leaves Africa behind. Our development partners and the international financial Institutions should take a long term view, and dispense with any short term requirements that would only serve to slow down Africa’s recovery,” Uhuru said.

The Head of State spoke during the second edition of the Kusi Ideas Festival, held both physically at the lakeside city of Kisumu and virtually for remote participants. 

Comprehensive measures

In his pre-recorded message, the President also challenged African governments to consider responses, that result in wider sustaining of systems for the wellbeing of citizens.  

“As governments, and in the spirit of Pan Africanism, it is necessary for us to consider responses that do not just seek to address direct and immediate impacts of Covid-19,” the President said.  

Uhuru said his administration has designed the post Covid-19 Economic Recovery Strategy (ERS), that is aimed at accelerating the country’s economic recovery for higher and sustained growth.  

He said the ERS will offer solutions for mitigating the pandemic’s negative economic and social challenges, while at the same time laying the basis for an even more prosperous, just and equitable Kenya for all. 

“Covid-19 was bound to affect more seriously the vulnerable part of our populations. 

Cognizant of this fact, my government moved fast and introduced several welfare measures to cushion the elderly Kenyans, the urban poor and vulnerable persons and businesses in the economy,” he said.   

He added: “We introduced a 100 per cent tax relief for persons earning a gross monthly income of up to Sh24,000 and reduced income tax rate at both personal and corporate levels from 30 per cent to 25 per cent,” the President said. 

Uhuru said the government will introduce long-lasting comprehensive measures to replace the short-term reliefs and to power the economy post Covid-19 

The government is banking on the Covid war chest to mitigate effects of the virus that has left an estimated 1.7 million people jobless in the country. 

In his recorded speech, Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame stressed on the need for enhanced collaboration between actors in curbing the negative effects of Covid-19.

“Continued collaboration is key in order to emerge in safety and prosperity. In Rwanda, we have learnt that progress comes from ensuring participation and inclusivity,” President Kagame said. 

Other speakers included Kisumu Governor Anyang’ Nyong’o, Kisumu West MP Olago Aluoch and Nation Media Group Board chairman Wilfred Kiboro.

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