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Botswana and Kenya in UN seat deal

Tuesday July 23 2019

President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Botswana counterpart Dr Eric Masisi

President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Botswana counterpart Dr Eric Masisi address the media at State House in Nairobi on July 23, 2019. PHOTO | PSCU  

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Botswana says it is endorsing Kenya’s bid for a seat at the UN Security Council when a position becomes vacant later this year.

Visiting Botswana President Eric Masisi said his country would back Kenya out of “trust” that Kenya would support it, too, in other international bids.

“Botswana will vote before Kenya votes itself in. This is out of a desire to further nourish our friendship because we trust you with your willingness to engage with our issues that need broad discussions at the United Nations,” he said during a briefing with President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Dr Masisi’s visit, a first in Nairobi since he took power in 2018, comes against a backdrop of an unimplemented Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed in 2016 when Botswana was then led by President Ian Khama.

It needed to be followed with bilateral agreements as is tradition.



On Tuesday, the two leaders, at a State House Nairobi meeting, witnessed the signing of agreements which cover bilateral trade, air transport and ICT. Deputy President William Ruto also attended the meeting.

They witnessed the signing of the non-double taxation agreement which was signed by Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary Monica Juma and Internal Affairs and Co-operation Minister Unity Dow for Kenya and Botswana, respectively.

At the press briefing, President Kenyatta said they had sought to strengthen co-operation in mineral exploration, livestock breeding, trade, tourism promotion, agribusiness and manufacturing.

“I wish to reiterate Kenya’s commitment to continued co-operation with Botswana, both at the bilateral and multilateral levels, to further deepen our bonds of co-operation and friendship,” President Kenyatta said.