KIKWETE ‘THE FIRST’

Presidents Kikwete and Obama

Presidents Kikwete and Obama

President Kikwete was the first African head of state to be invited to Washington by President Obama following his inauguration in January. During the May visit, President Obama said that his invitation was in recognition of the Tanzania’s leader’s impeccable credentials and his successful policies. “I want you to succeed in your leadership. Tell me how you would like us to assist you to continue on your successful path. I am really pleased with your leadership.’’ He praised Tanzania for laying emphasis on education, which he described as a pinnacle of good leadership. He promised to step up American assistance in the Millennium Challenge projects in Tanzania to ensure more prosperity. Mr Kikwete briefed his US counterpart on his efforts to bring about political reconciliation in Zanzibar and also discussed the situation in Darfur, the Congo, Somalia and Kenya and what America could do for Tanzania.

Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton hailed Tanzania as a country which had made “so much progress and has an extraordinary potential that we wish to partner with and assist in every way possible. I myself have had a wonderful visit to your country, Mr President. And I am delighted that I am the Secretary of State at this moment and have this chance to commit our efforts to working closely with you. I’m here to reaffirm our commitment for continued cooperation.”

“I am here to give you an assurance of continued cooperation” Mr Kikwete said. Speaking later President Kikwete said, to enthusiastic applause: “Whatever area of investment one is interested in, rest assured that opportunities abound in Tanzania.” He told the gathering that Tanzania was a vibrant multi-party democracy and that political stability was guaranteed.

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