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Cablegate: Civil Society Delegation to Washington


DE RUEHNR #2522/01 3451010
R 111010Z DEC 09



E.O. 12958: N/A
SUBJECT: Civil Society Delegation to Washington

1. This is an Action request, see para 4.

2. We remain actively engaged with civil society, business groups,
women's associations, religious leaders, and youth as part of our
continuing efforts to advance the process of reform in Kenya. On
November 17 we sponsored a highly successful national youth forum
that gathered activist youth from all regions of Kenya who are
eager to push the process of reform. Out of the national youth
forum several individuals emerged as leaders capable of helping to
move the nation forward on the path to reform.

3. We propose to send in mid-January a nine person delegation of
key civil society leaders to Washington. This visit is an
important element in our strategy to push for implementation of the
reform agenda. We strongly feel that sending this delegation with
appropriate high level attention will help galvanize Kenyan
domestic-driven pressure for reform, which is crucially needed. We
have identified funding for such a delegation, and we have devised
a notional schedule for a Washington program.

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4. Post seeks Department concurrence with the proposed delegation
(para 5) and notional schedule (para 6). Our proposed delegation
includes youth leaders, and other civil leaders who are deeply
engaged in moving Kenya beyond the ethnic-based and corrupt
practices of the past. The notional schedule proposed represents
just that -- Post recommendations that the delegation meet with the
highest levels of Washington, including with the Secretary and
possibly even POTUS, in order to underscore the urgency of reform
in Kenya, highlight the importance we place on governance and
democracy in Kenya, and to demonstrate our support for those
advocating for a better future for the people of Kenya.

5. Proposed Delegation:

Hassan Ole Naado ( M, Youth, Masai, Muslim): Kenya Muslim Youth
Alliance (KMYA); Ole Naado is the CEO of KMYA, Chief Editor of the
New Dawn publication and Deputy Secretary General of the Supreme
Council of Kenyan Muslims (SUPKEM). Ole Naado is active in
promoting inter-faith dialogue and encouraging Muslim participation
in democratic and nation-building processes, and was a leadership
force behind the National Youth Forum.

Caroline Ruto (F, Youth, Kalenjin, Christian): Ruto is a programme
officer with Citizens Assembly and a young activist who has led
peace and reconciliation efforts in Rift Valley. She has been
instrumental in initiating youth reform assemblies across the
country to engage with local authorities on conflict resolution and
civic education. She was a delegate to the national constitutional
conference in 2001 and in 2009 she has organized delegations of
over 2000 youth to present views to the Constitutional Review
Commission. She was a key member of the steering committee for the
November 2009 National Youth Forum.

Susan Kariuki (F, Youth, Kikuyu, Christian): Youth Agenda; Kariuki
is the Deputy Executive Director/Program Coordinator of Youth
Agenda. Youth Agenda was the technical coordinator of the November
National Youth Forum. Kariuki recently pioneered the Kenya
University Youth Project, which is coordinating university students
to lead reform in Kenya.

Joshua Nyamori (M, Youth, Luo, Christian): Nyanza Youth Coalition
(NYC); Nyamori is the Coordinator of NYC, a network of 169
organizations led by youth and working on youth issues in Nyanza
province. NYC mobilizes youth for participation in the economic,
social and political development of the province. NYC was a very
active member of the steering committee that coordinated the
November National Youth Forum.

Wangui Mbatia (F, Youth, Kikuyu, Christian): Kenya Network of

Grassroots Organizations (KENGO); Mbatia is the Executive Director
of KENGO. KENGO is a network of grassroots organizations that
address poor governance, corruption and poverty using a bottom-up
and rights based approach. Mbatia is currently coordinating a
grassroots network of over 2,000 groups representing women, youth,
and self-help and welfare groups in Kenya.

Patricia Nyaundi (F, Non-Youth, Kisii, Christian): is an advocate
of the High Court and the Executive Director of FIDA-K Kenya
Chapter (FIDA-K); Nyaundi has been instrumental in investigating
sexual offences committed during the post-election violence, and
she was a member of the police Task force undertaking the
investigations. Currently, she is very active in mobilizing and
sensitizing women on the draft constitution.

Ann Njogu (F, Non-Youth, Kikuyu, Christian): Njogu is an advocate
of the High Court and a founder of the Center for Rights Education
Awareness. She is an activist spearheading the fight against
injustice and she has been at the forefront of campaigns to combat
corruption, gender equality and constitutional reforms. She was
the co-convener of national civil society congress in 2008 that was
instrumental in averting total political collapse following the
December 2007 elections. She is the co-chair of the Multi-sectoral
Committee and Joint Dialogue Forum on Constitutional Reforms. Her
activities have caused her to be battered and harassed by state

Harun Ndubi (M, Non-Youth, Kisii, Christian): Haki Focus; Ndubi
recently founded Haki Focus, an NGO that advocates for human rights
and good governance. He is very active lawyer/litigator handling
cases concerning human rights, governance and constitutional law.
He is a seasoned democracy and human rights activist and the former
Executive Director of the Kituo Cha Sheria Center, which provides
legal aid. He was a founder of Kenya Peace for Truth and Justice,
which was instrumental in helping to end the violence in early
2008. He is very engaged on the issue of the constitution and the
reform agenda.

Benson Maisori (M, Youth, Kuria, Christian): Maisori is a youth
activist currently attached to Kenya National Commission on Human
Rights engaged in human rights education and capacity building for
grassroots organizations. He is a founder of Kuria Youth Forum for
democracy that engages youth to demand for transparency and
accountability, and he is a co-founder of Citizens against
Violence, a former student leader of Kuria University Students
Association and Kuria Student Volunteers.

Chris Kinyanjui (M, Youth, Kikuyu, Christian): National Council of
Churches Kenya (NCCK); Kiyanjui is an Advocate of the High Court
who has helped draft key legislation for Parliament. He currently
serves as Program Officer for Governance and Social Services at the
National Council of Churches of Kenya. He has worked with USAID on
a number of reform efforts, including dissemination of the Waki
report work and the book "It's Our Turn to Eat."

6. Notional Itinerary:

Sunday, January 10:

Late Afternoon Arrive Dulles

Proceed to Hotel

Monday, January 11:

0900 AF/E

1000 Call on A/S Carson and AF/FO (including
representatives from other Bureaus as

1100 Meeting with the Secretary

1200 Wilson Center Roundtable


Dinner TBD

Tuesday, January 12:

0900 NSC meeting and possible photo opportunity
with POTUS


1230 Lunch with HDAC/Staffers and/or Members

1400 Call on Payne/Senate SFRC

1600 Foreign Press Center

Dinner TBD

Wednesday, January 13:

0830 Breakfast Briefing at USIP

1100 CSIS Meeting/Roundtable

1300 Lunch/Outbrief with AF/E

1430 Depart for Dulles


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