Wetang'ula joins Raila, Lusaka in Ghana for Kofi Annan funeral

Wednesday September 12 2018

Ghanaian soldiers carry the coffin of late Ghanaian diplomat Kofi Atta Annan on the tarmac of Kotoka International Airport in Accra on September 10, 2018. PHOTO | CRISTINA ALDEHUELA | AFP


Ford Kenya leader Moses Wetang'ula has joined opposition leader Raila Odinga and Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka in Ghana for the state funeral of former United Nations Secretary General Kofi Annan.

Mr Odinga travelled on Monday while Mr Lusaka arrived in the west Africa nation on Tuesday ahead of the funeral on Thursday.


Mr Wetang’ula left the country a day after he paid tribute to Dr Annan on the floor of the Senate, reliving memories of the 2008 Serena talks that he led.

"I wish, and I believe I speak for the Serena team and millions of Kenyans, to urge this House to record our respect and appreciation to this gallant son of Africa. May God rest his soul in peace," the Bungoma Senator told the Senate on Tuesday and asked members to observe a minute's silence for Dr Annan.

Wetang'ula served as Kenya's foreign Affairs minister during the Serena talks.



Dr Annan, who died on August 18, is remembered fondly by many Kenyans because of his patient deliberations for peace following the disputed 2007 presidential election that led to the death of 1, 133 Kenyans, and the displacement of 650,000 others.

The former UN head led the Serena talks, named after the Nairobi hotel where the mediation took place, former Tanzanian President Benjamin Mkapa and former South African First Lady Graca Machel.

In his condolence message, President Uhuru Kenyatta said: "The government and the people of Kenya join the people of Africa and the international community in remembering his remarkable service to the world.

"In this regard, the people of Kenya are grateful to him for the critical role he played as a mediator during the 2008 post-election crisis."

In the talks were Mr Wetang'ula, Martha Karua, Sam Ongeri, the late Mutula Kilonzo, William Ruto, James Orengo, Musalia Mudavadi, and Dr Sally Kosgey.

The talks came after widespread violence following the declaration of former President Mwai Kibaki as the winner of the disputed poll that Mr Odinga and his team claimed was rigged.

In his speech to the House, Mr Wetang'ula described Dr Annan as one who paid the "greatest attention" to the role of civil society, gender equality and the fights against poverty, depravation and underdevelopment.