KICOTEC IMPRESSES ENVOY

Kenya should wean itself off foreign aid — Ambassador McCarter

Kyle McCarter says the country should put efforts towards self-reliance

In Summary

• McCarter said that the proper utilisation of the available resources would move Kenya from the dependence of foreign aid and support

• He termed Kicotec an example of how successful local initiatives could be. 

US Ambassador to Kenya Kyle McCarter at the Kitui County Textile Centre on Thursday. With him are Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu (L) and her deputy Wathe Nzau.
HOW IT IS DONE US Ambassador to Kenya Kyle McCarter at the Kitui County Textile Centre on Thursday. With him are Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu (L) and her deputy Wathe Nzau.
Image: Musembi Nzengu

Kenya is well endowed with natural and human resources hence should wean itself off foreign aid, US Ambassador Kyle McCarter has said. 

McCarter said that the proper utilisation of the available resources would move Kenya from the dependence of foreign aid and support.

The ambassador said the country should put efforts towards self-reliance and the US government is keen on a relationship that can achieve that.

The envoy spoke when he visited the Kitui County Textile Centre with his wife Victoria. They were led on a tour of the factory Governor Charity Ngilu.

He said Kicotec is an example of how  Kenyans can use local initiatives to create jobs. 

McCarter hoped other counties would borrow from the garment factory and replicate such projects across the country.

“This project illustrates that Kenya shouldn’t only be a beneficiary of foreign aids but a benefactor in the industry,” he said.

He said the country's future was dependent on empowering the youths.

"I thank you, governor, for what you've done. The future of this country is in these young people," he said.

McCarter pledged to link the Kicotec to businesses and partners from the US so that it could penetrate the international market and prosper.

However, the ambassador decried the pilferage of public resources by government officers, likening them to dogs who are pampered by their owners and end up stealing and eating their master’s food.

He said no effort should be spared in taking action against such wayward persons.

The envoy said that such leaders were an impediment to the prospect of Kenya becoming a great nation and an economic powerhouse.

“It is time we said no to such people,” McCarter added.

Ngilu said the Kicotec had given jobs to hundreds of youth and improved the livelihoods of many locals who have tapped into the garment factories value chain.

The governor said that the textile factory will soon employ 5,000 people.

The Kicotec will be expanded and two new garment factories will be set up in Mwingi town and also Mutomo in Kitui South.

He noted that Kicotec had received an invitation to showcase their products at an exhibition in Dallas, United States.

She said the trade, investment, partnership and market ties with the US will take centre stage during her visit to the Dallas exhibition as she seeks to explore the US apparel market.

US Ambassador to Kenya Kyle McCarter with Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu outside Kitui County Textile Center on Thusday.
US Ambassador to Kenya Kyle McCarter with Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu outside Kitui County Textile Center on Thusday.
Image: Musembi Nzengu