Nyong’o asks Govt to engage the U.S embassy to lift travel advisory against Kisumu

Kisumu County Governor Prof. Anyang Nyong’o has Wednesday urged the national government to engage the United States of America (USA) Embassy in Kenya to lift a travel advisory against Kisumu.

He said the area continued to enjoy peace and tranquillity questioning the decision by the embassy.

Nyong’o in addition noted that the reasons behind the advisory have neither been shared with him by the embassy nor the national government officials.

“We just woke up to this information. There was no information or intelligence shared from the national government or the embassy,” he said.

Addressing the media in Kisumu, Nyong’o stated that no incident had been reported in the area during the electioneering period to warrant such a decision.

“We have just come from hosting a successful Africities Summit where over 10, 000 delegates attended and some even chose to stay longer because of the prevailing peace and tranquillity,” he said.

The advisory, he said was likely to derail the gains made in repositioning the city as both a tourist and business hub.

The lake-side city Governor is now urging the Cabinet Secretaries for Foreign Affairs and Interior to negotiate with the US embassy with a view to addressing their concerns to have the advisory lifted.

“We would like them to tell us their concerns or areas they feel we must work on so that we can do so,” he said.

The embassy through a statement on Tuesday issued a travel advisory to its citizens and personnel to exercise caution while visiting the lakeside city during the electioneering period.

“Out of an abundance of caution, the Embassy has imposed movement restrictions on personnel in Kisumu. The State Department reminds US citizens of the continued need for sustained vigilance,” reads the statement.

“Election-related demonstrations and rallies regularly take place in the runup to the election and are likely to continue, at times blocking key intersections and causing traffic jams. Demonstrations may occasionally be violent, requiring police intervention. Strikes and other protest activities related to economic conditions occur regularly.”

The US embassy urged its citizens to monitor local media for updates, avoid crowds and demonstrations as well as be aware of their surroundings.

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