State of the Nation Address: What to expect from President Uhuru
By Betty Njeru
| November 30th 2021
In his mandatory annual State of the Nation address today, President Uhuru Kenyatta is expected to address a nation that is bubbling with expectations.
Tuesday’s joint session of the National Assembly and the Senate is the second to happen under adherence to Covid-19 protocols.
It will be Uhuru’s second-last address as the Constitution of Kenya requires the president to deliver a State of the Nation Address every year. President Uhuru's second and final term ends in August 2022.
Today’s address will be one to watch, with Kenyans keen to hear what the president will emphasise on, as he nears the end of his second term.
He is expected to give priority to the global Covid-19 pandemic, especially mitigation measures against the Omicron variant of the disease even as Kenya's positivity rate has fallen to under one per cent. [The WHO threshold percentage for lifting curfews and other containment measures is when the positivity rate falls under five per cent].
He will also be expected to speak about the 2022 General Elections, the political temperatures, and the country’s ailing economy, especially the ballooning debt.
According to the Central Bank of Kenya, the country's external debt stood at Sh4 trillion while the domestic one was Sh3.7 trillion as of June 2021.
You can also expect the president to touch on matters security, the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), corruption, famine, and drought.
About 2.5 million Kenyans are facing famine in twenty-three counties.
Kenyans also expect Uhuru to touch on the high cost of food and basic commodities.
Kenyans had expected prices of food items including milk and sugar to remain constant after President Uhuru Kenyatta lifted the countrywide curfew in October, and several other Covid-19 containment measures.
But the soaring cost of commodities has forced people to brace for hard times ahead of Christmas festivities.
Vegetable oil, sugar, milk and maize flour take the lion's share of people’s daily earnings.
The cost of electricity and fuel has been a thorny issue to the presidency with the dissolving the board of Kenya and appointing The Presidential Taskforce on Review of Power Purchase Agreements, which taskforce gave its report to the President on September 29.
He is also expected to update the country on his administration’s progress achieved in the realization of our National Values in line with the Constitution.
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