Kenyan Diaspora in the European Union and Scandinavia today released an exclusive Memorandum via Smart Africa Media to his Excellency Rt. Hon Raila Odinga and Senior Counsel Ms Martha Karua.

Authors: [L-R] Caroline Atinga (Italy), Margaret Rulhoff (Germany), Peter Ong’olo (Sweden) and Dr. Antony Otieno Ong’ayo (Netherlands) – Azimio-EU and Scandinavia Chapter.


  • The Diaspora is strongly behind Rt Hon Raila Amollo Odinga and Senior Counsel Ms Martha Karua.
  • We have therefore organized an online Diaspora Azimio Rally that will be happening on the 26- June 2022 at 6.30 pm Kenyan Time.
  • We have outlined our main concerns here for your considerations once elected as the Fifth President and First Female Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya.

To His Excellency the Right Honourable Raila Amollo Odinga, and Senior Counsel Ms Martha Karua we, the Kenyan diaspora in EU and Scandinavia take this opportunity to congratulate you for the bold choices you have made, the commitment that you have shown in pursuit of a better Kenya, and years of sacrifices to seek the Kenyan dream that has been on suspense for decades.

The major events that started with the meeting at the KICC and Jacaranda Grounds on the 12th   of March 2022, which culminated into your nomination as the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya flagbearer demonstrate the true spirit of pulling and growing together as a people and nation, guided by the principles of utu and Ubuntu.

This is a historic and significant development in the democratisation process in Kenya and Africa as a whole because of your statesmanship, visionary outlook, and pragmatism that has brought together over 22 political parties. Words cannot describe your labour of love, the endurance, a people-centred tapestry skills to see our country united, cohesive and stand as one people.

Equally, your recent nomination as candidates for the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya ticket is one of a historic nature in Kenya’s political history. The nomination of Senior Counsel Ms Martha Karua as your running mate not only confirms your belief in the principles of inclusivity and appreciation of capacities of Kenyans regardless of gender.

As a true reformer, the choice of Senior Counsel Ms Martha Karua as a running mate is not only a historic moment, but a very timely and positive disruptive act because it generates a symbolic and material value in terms of the ceiling that is and will be broken for years to come. It is a testimony of your belief that women are central to and in any meaningful development agenda and practice your ticket is a confirmation that change is possible. Inawezekana!

Your Candidacy gives hope because it is grounded within a progressive mentality and tract record, belief in the rule of law and pragmatism informed by a deeply held belief that Kenyans deserve better and  can do better given the right economic and political environment.

Your Excellency, you are alive to the struggles of Kenyans in the Diaspora based on your own personal experiences in Germany and Norway. We are also cognisant of your exceptionality as a listener to the diaspora through the various virtual town-hall meetings you have had with them.

Through these spaces you have been able to listen to diaspora problems, experiences, visions, and commitments to contribute to the transformation for Kenya through various forms of remittances and engagement.

Your Excellency, you are aware that the remittances the diaspora inject to the Kenya’s economy this year was to the tune of Kenya Shilling 400 Billion and are one of the leading foreign exchange earners for the nation.

In terms of investments and trade, and the dream of local industrialisation that you have outlined, the Kenyan diaspora are in a unique position to sell the ‘Magical Kenya’ to boost tourism in Kenya and promote skills exchange, entrepreneurship, and innovation, through labour migration policies  framed within the principles of reciprocity between Kenya and host countries.

Beside the financial and material remittances, diaspora social remittances play an important role in the societal transformation through influences such as democratic cultures and governance practices and social accountability that would strengthen the increased public service delivery within the framework of devolution in Kenya.

For these reasons, the Diasporas are going to be an invaluable asset to your administration based on the 10 points agenda of your manifesto in rebuilding Kenya, Post-COVID-19 and to usher in the renaissance and third liberation process that you have started through Azimio La Umoja One Kenya movement and to achieve a united, stable, and progressive Kenya that you envision and all of us wish to have.


Your Excellency, despite the immense development potentials of the Kenyan diaspora, and policy enriching input that they are likely to bring, Kenyan Diasporas still feel overlooked, neglected, and treated like strangers in their homeland/mother land due to the pending actualisation of their citizenship rights, and space to fulfil their civic duties.

While acknowledging the 9 points commitment within the unveiled manifesto, the Kenyan Diasporas in Europe are appealing for a paradigm shift through your administration. Your Excellency, with your administration’s ‘Political Goodwill’ and responsiveness, we look forward to the incorporation of the following urgent issues, into your governance and development agenda:

i) Diaspora citizenship: Rights, and Civic Duties:

  • Facilitating the actualisation of Dual Citizenship as provided for in the constitution
  • Consular services –  electronic voter registration and voting for the diasporas
  • Consular services – Huduma services built with diaspora in mind
  • Participation in political process  as dual citizens
  • Consular services – oriented towards diaspora challenges in the host countries (protections)

ii) Diaspora Citizenship and Voting:

  • The nature of interpretation and operationalisation of diaspora right to vote under Article 82(1)(e) creates gaps that allows the IEBC to introduce obstacles in the form of time bound process in the implementation of diaspora rights to vote.
  • Reg 34(2) Restricting diaspora voting to gazetted consulates only, disenfranchises many Kenyans
  • Reg 37(5) ‘The Okiya Omtata Petition’ that advocated for uniformity of use of Kenya ID/passport (Huduma number) should be adopted.
  • Facilitation of the ‘Use of electronic equipment’ in terms of biometric identification through the extended use of e-citizen to allow  mass and efficient diaspora voters.

iii) Labour Migration

Establishing and reenforcing reciprocal labour migration policies to leverage of development potential of skills migration

  • Healthcare workers (including initiatives by President Uhuru Kenyatta)
  • Technicians to address labour shortages in Europe
  • Diaspora skills database and matching with knowledge and industry needs in Kenya
  • Relevant policies for reintegration of diaspora skills and expertise  into the Kenyan labour market (manufacture industry, service sector, and academia)
  • Transferability of social benefits (post-retirement) through bilateral agreements  

iv) Investment / Trade

  • Policy measures and  incentives  for diaspora investment through flexible tax regimes for new start-ups
  • Removal of Diasporas from double taxation.
  • Bilateral agreements to facilitate transferability of diaspora investment capital
  • Diaspora Bonds for investment in large scale and transformative projects (infrastructure, affordable housing, water, and clean energy).

v) Representation

  • We appeal for an office dedicated for diaspora relations with agreed structures for effective function within Kenya and in the countries of residence I.e.  Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Kenya Diaspora and a dedicated Diaspora attaché in every Kenyan Embassy. 
  • We appeal for the nomination of 2 legislators from the ruling party and main opposition party in both Senate and Parliament to represent the Diasporas as a special ‘interest group’.
  • We appeal for a Parliamentary Committee and a Caucus Group for the Kenya diasporas
  • We appeal for  constitutional provision of diaspora  representation as the 48th County 48 to facilitate direct link between the diasporas and local development through diaspora led initiatives (investments and charity works that compliment government services)

Lastly, the diaspora is strongly behind Rt Hon Raila Amollo Odinga and Senior Counsel Ms Martha Karua. We have therefore organized an online diaspora Azimio Rally that will be happening on the 26- June 2022 at 6.30 pm Kenyan time. We invite all Kenyans only to register for this rally and attend it.




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