Nairobi — Monday evening’s meeting with top State House staff during which President Uhuru Kenyatta bid farewell to officials who served him since he assumed office in 2013 marked final steps in an elaborate plan to ready the residence for a new occupant.
Images shared by State House shortly after President Kenyatta hosted President-elect William Ruto revealed the conspicuous absence of prominent wall-mounted images on the corridors of the country’s official residence for the President.
The outgoing President hosted Ruto, his deputy for 10 years, whose bid he fiercely opposed following an acrimonious fallout in 2018 before making a televised address to the nation in which he highlighted the achievements of his administration.
“As you are aware, the transition process commenced on the 12th of August, 2022, and over the last week, the doors of State House and the Office of the President have been open to the technical teams from the office of the President-Elect so as to facilitate a smooth transition and hand-over,” President Kenyatta said in his farewell address.
“This afternoon’s meeting between the President-Elect and myself is the final step in that process,” the outgoing Head of State stated after he jointly, with First Lady Margaret, hosted Ruto and his spouse Rachel.
President Kenyatta also directly mention Ruto for the first time since his election and confirmation of his win the by Supreme Court on September 5.
“Tomorrow, I will emulate that honoured tradition and hand over the mantle to my successor, The Hon. William Ruto. I am profoundly grateful for the honour and privilege you bestowed upon me to serve as the Fourth President of the Great Republic of Kenya,” he said.
The Head of State had in a previous address following the Supreme Court verdict dismissing a petition filed by Raila Odinga, the candidate he backed, failed to make a direct mention of the President-Elect only committing to handover in compliance with the decision of the court.
President Kenyatta is expected to handover at a public inauguration ceremony at Nairobi’s Kasarani International Sports Stadium.
The law requires the swearing in of the new leadership to take place between 10am and 2pm on the appointed date which is also set out in the Constitution.