Kenyan businesses lately are increasingly becoming recipients of U.S.
government largesse, as the Obama Administration, among pursuing other
endeavors, aims to expand “livestock-related economic opportunities” in
that nation. Although this and other recently released presolicitation
notices for unrelated programs serve as advance alerts to potential
vendors—and therefore do not offer cost estimates and other details— a
review of U.S. government contracting actions nonetheless indicates a
spike of activity in Kenya in a variety of sectors.
The White House is committing to a five-year effort to “improve the
inclusiveness and competitiveness” of the livestock industry
specifically in Marsabit and Garissa counties, Kenya, according to a presolicitation notice released April 12 that U.S. Trade & Aid Monitor located via routine database research. The
agency did not disclose the project’s estimated cost: “No additional
information regarding this planned RFP [Request for Proposals] is
available at this time.”
No information except those facts I’ve been able to uncover, that is… the number is $65 Billion dollars a year in US-AID. To be used for:
Up to $50 million in U.S. Navy-coordinated military construction projectson the horizon at Camp Simba, Kenya, and at Camp Lemonnier, Djibouti.
- Deployment to Kenya of a privately contracted Regional Advisor for USAID’s Office of U.S. Foreign Disaster Assistance (OFDA). as well as an Emerging Pandemic Threats Advisor.
- A U.S. Trade & Development Agency-led search for a contractor to perform a “definitional mission” exploring possible funding of geothermal energy projects in Kenya and Rwanda.
The above-mentioned endeavors have taken place in recent weeks; however,
other notable U.S.-funded Kenyan projects thus far in 2012 include the
launching of a National Institutes of Health-led initiative
to hire contractors to conduct genetic research of Kenyans with Type-2
diabetes. Separately, the U.S. Army embarked upon a market survey of
potential vendors to provide helicopter flight-training simulators to the Kenyan government.
Fears that the US Congress might block a Sh65
billion-a-year package to support health programmes in Kenya are
founded and thoroughly justified. It is easy to see why the Congress would like to travel that road at this point in that country’s history. The US is in serious debt and is going through one of its worst economic crises ever. Many people across America cannot find a job. But America’s fate is now intertwined with that of the rest of the world, including our own. America must trade globally to survive and thrive and it must deal
with nations such as ours in order to secure itself and its allies. In today’s globalised and interdependent world, isolationism is romantic but unrealistic. Unfortunately, engaging with the world requires some investment which might direct resources away from domestic priorities.
There is no doubt that focusing on local issues fits the ideological
leaning of some members of Congress and is popular with many suffering
But the way to secure America’s long-term interests is not to cut off important allies such as Kenya. It is to continue with the path that the Obama administration has drawn: more, rather than less, international engagement.
Commentary: I guess Obama is really concerned about Kenya, after all he has a lot of relatives there; except for the one’s living in the US illegally.