President William Ruto has defended his international travels, which have raised eyebrows among Kenyans.
Speaking on Saturday July 1 during the thanksgiving ceremony for National Treasury Principal Secretary Chris Kiptoo, in Keiyo, Elgeyo Marakwet, Ruto stated that the foreign visits were necessary in his plan of creating employment opportunities for Kenyans.
He noted that the international visits will help in the creation of one million jobs as he promised during campaigns.
Ruto also stated that the foreign excursions were also vital since they allowed him to make bilateral agreements with his colleagues.
“We need one million jobs for Kenyans who are working abroad. Many Kenyans ask why I am travelling to the US, Canada and Europe. I am going out there to enter into agreements with other countries.” The president explained.
He added, “All those presidents are telling me that they want Kenyans who are workers because we are known for our skills and minds.”
President Ruto at the same time explained that part of the plan by the government for job creation is having ICT hubs across the nation for digital jobs.
“We are building a fibre optic network across the country because we want to use all means to build another one million digital jobs,” he explained.
Ruto was responding to criticism about increased government spending on international trips. Since taking office on September 13, 2022, the Head of State has made over 25 trips outside of Kenya, the most recent of which was to France.
According to the Controller of the Budget, Ruto has spent Ksh88 million on foreign travel during his first six months in government.
This comes at a time when the government has increased taxes, pushing the price of basic commodities beyond the reach of many people.