President Uhuru Kenyatta Thursday canceled a trip to Nigeria and instead opted to be represented by Deputy President William Ruto.
The trip by Kenyatta sparked controversy over the huge team comprising of 84 people that were supposed to travel to Nigeria for the inauguration of Nigeria’s new president, Gen Muhammadu Buhari.
Kenyatta and First lady Margret Kenyatta were to be accompanied by a team of 82 persons that comprised, 4 doctors, 22 security officers, 6 presidential press unit members, 12 officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 11 statehouse staff, 9 officers from Kenya's high commission in Nigeria staff, 8 support staff.
In the VIP list the head of state was to be accompanied by Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Amina Mohamed, State House Comptroller Lawrence Lenayapa, President's private secretary Jomo Gecaga, Statehouse spokesman Manoah Esipisu, the Presidential Delivery Unit Director Wangui Muchiri.
Others on the VIP list included Chief of Staff 1st Lady's office Constance Gakonyo, Acting Chief of Protocol Tabu Irina, Aide-de-Camp Col. Peter Njiru and Presidential Escort Commander Edward Mbugua.
The 84 man team would have reportedly spent about Sh20 million of public funds.
However Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho during a press conference cited a crowded programme for the president as the reason for the cancellation of the trip with state house spokesperson Manoah Esipisu refuting the 84 team list saying it could have been created by people with an ill motive, The Nation reports.
An advance team that had traveled on Monday 25th according to a report on Citizen TV has been ordered to return to Kenya immediately.
Ruto who traveled on Thursday has been accompanied by a 9 member team comprising of 4 security officers, 3 members of the communication team and 2 officers from the administration desk.
Watch Video by Citizen TV: [video:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X5jEnHG2HJM]
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