Debunked: Uhuru's Contentious Utterances Laid Bare

  • President Uhuru Kenyatta with Deputy President William Ruto in 2015. File
  • President Uhuru Kenyatta's claims during the Mashujaa day celebrations held at the Mama Ngina Waterfront on October 20, in Mombasa have been laid bare in a new report by Africa Check.

    Africa Check, a non-profit organisation set up in 2012 to promote accuracy in public debate and the media in Africa, revealed that President Kenyatta's utterances the number of goods handled at the Kilindini harbour was debunked as not so truthful.

    During the Mashujaa Day celebrations, President Kenyatta claimed that his administration had more than doubled the activities taking place at the Kilindini harbour and the number of goods handled there on a yearly basis.

    Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho and President Uhuru Kenyatta at Mama Ngina Drive site on Tuesday, July 9, 2019.
    Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho and President Uhuru Kenyatta at Mama Ngina Drive site on Tuesday, July 9, 2019.

    "At Kilindini, we have more than doubled the volume of cleared cargo passing through the port annually. The significance of the port is further underscored by an 8,000-strong direct workforce hired at the facility and an even larger number of people that it supports indirectly," Uhuru had stated in his speech.

    He attributed the increase to the investments that his government along with other industry players had undertaken to make the harbour a logistics hub for the region and the continent.

    Reports from Africa Check, however, indicated that while there was indeed an increase in the cargo handled, it was not a 100 per cent increase as the president had indicated, but a 41 per cent increment.

    "Kenyatta was sworn into office in April 2013. The port's annual 2014/2015 report indicated that in the previous financial year, 25 million deadweight tonnage (DWT) had passed through the port. In 2016/2017, there was a 12 per cent increase to hit 28.2 million DWT."

    "In 2018, the cargo handled through the harbour hit a volume of 30 million DWT against a volume of 21.9 million in 2012 before the Jubilee government took over the country's leadership. This is a 41 per cent increase," the report concluded.

    The organization noted that it had made applications to the Kenya Ports Authorities to be issued with data for the 2018/2019 period, a request that did not go through.

    This forced them to make the conclusions with the data that they had in hand.

    President Uhuru Kenyatta greets DP William Ruto the 10th Mashujaa Day Celebrations at Mama Ngina Waterfront Park in Mombasa County on October 20, 2019.
    President Uhuru Kenyatta greets DP William Ruto the 10th Mashujaa Day Celebrations at Mama Ngina Waterfront Park in Mombasa County on October 20, 2019.

    "None of the publicly available data shows cargo volumes more than doubling – or over a 100% increase. We, therefore, rate the claim as incorrect," the fact-checking organisation concluded.