Response to "Kenyan Embassy in Netherlands Trying to Influence Formation of a Diaspora Organization"
Hello Mwawikilishi and Wambui wa Karago, allow me to respond to the article titled "Kenyan Embassy in Netherlands Trying to Influence Formation of a Diaspora Organization" and published on Mwakilishi.com on Sept 12 that I feel was done in bad taste. The Kenyan embassy in the Netherlands has never, is and will never try to influence formation of a diaspora organisation here in the Netherlands. They however facilitated us in forming a vibrant, inclusive and well represented diaspora organisation in Holland.
As you have read in the attached minutes, Kenyans in the Netherlands had no meaningful, unifying and vibrant organisation. The one that was there lacked representation, structures to function properly in the Netherlands where laws are very strict and had too much infighting. It is some Kenyans that included me who saw a need to have a serious, inclusive and vibrant diaspora organisation that would represent the interest of every Kenyan living the Netherlands. UKEA would remain to serve as a social and entertainment forum while KDCN(Kenya Diaspora Community in the Netherlands) would address socio-economic, immigration, political, representation aspects of Kenyans living in the Netherlands. That means, UKEA & KDCN would complement each other to unite Kenyans and help solve a number of challenges facing them here. The embassy only provided us a venue and after knowing clear way forward with an interim board of 10 Kenyans the ambassador inaugurated us and charged us to unite Kenyans and be as inclusive as possible.
The article is in response to "Kenyan Embassy in Netherlands Trying to Influence Formation of a Diaspora Organization."
So far, we have a very progressive constitution which we finished writing on 1st September 2012. We're soon doing registration and if all go well, on 20th October 2012 which is 'Mashujaa' day, we'll unveil to all Kenyans living in Holland the new inclusive and vibrant Kenya Diaspora Community in the Netherlands (KDCN). This new organisation is for every Kenyan living in Holland plus any Kenyan organisation. UKEA is a member & partner plus many others. So far, we have joined the Kenyan Diaspora Alliance and many other Kenyan Diaspora organisations in the world over. We're together with others pushing for voting of the Kenyan Diaspora.
I appeal to all Kenyan Diaspora Community in the Netherlands to be part of this organisation because it has most of the answers to their questions and struggles in this foreign land. It is for them and not for the Embassy. The embassy has no slight influence in KDCN affairs but we treat them as partners and also as members of the organisations on individual basis. The embassy officials including the ambassador are also "the Diaspora" so they are free to be members of the diaspora organisation if any of them so wishes. From the onset, the ambassador made it very clear that they would remain neutral and would never interfere with how Kenyans run their Diaspora organisation but also stressed to us the need to be united and inclusive. The structure of KDCN allows her to apply for funds and do things for Kenyans here and back home. UKEA could not because it was registered as an association which is Dutch is called "Vereniging" which has no mandate to solicit funds for big development projects.
We mean well for Kenyans living in the Netherlands so we urge them to register with us by sending their emails here: email@example.com they can also join the Facebook group here: http://www.facebook.com/#!/groups/kenyadiasporanl/.
In regard to voting, I have been asking Kenyans here to register with our Kenyan embassy so that the IEBC can know how to prepare in readiness for elections in 2013. The response has been very poor. So far, only 300Kenyans are registered with the embassy while we have more than 3000 Kenyans living here. IEBC needs 3000 people registered at the embassy for it to warrant being a polling station. I'm deeply concerned if 300 people could be considered. For those who read this article, please register with me on the links above but register with our Kenyan embassy on this link: http://www.kenyanembassy-nl.com/component/jforms/2/12.
ByJulius Pundo - Interim Secretary General, Kenya Diaspora in the Netherlands (KDCN)
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