Samia visit expected to cement Kenya, Tanzania ties

President Uhuru Kenyatta receives visiting Tanzania President Samia Suluhu Hassan at State House on Tuesday.Photo PPS

By Obegi Malack

obegimalack@gmail.com

Tanzania President Samia Suluhu Hassan has arrived in Nairobi for a two-day State Visit to Kenya. 

She was received at State House, Nairobi by her host President Uhuru Kenyatta.

The visit is in response to an invitation by President Uhuru. It comes five years after her predecessor, the late John Magufuli, made a similar visit.

The relations between the two countries have not been good due to trade disputes in the past. The visit is expected to rebuild relations of the two countries.

The Maasai Community in Kajiado County have been caught in cross fire, since they neighbor the country and have been trading across the borders in Tarakea and Namanga without barriers.

The community inhabits northern, central and southern Kenya and northern Tanzania and share a lot in common.

Past rows include confiscation and subsequent sale of about 1,300 cows belonging to the Maasai community in Kenya. A court in Tanzania had ordered the auction of the livestock after herders failed to pay a fine of about Sh23 million.

The negotiation had failed and Kenyan government compensated the herders.

The Tanzania government had also set on fire 6,400 one day-old chicks from Kenya for fears of bird flu. Tanzania had also banned importing of chicken in 2007; it also blocked importation of Kenyan dairy products and cigarettes.

The country had also blocked Kenyan trucks from accessing Tanzania after the two countries failed to agree on how to manage Covid-19 pandemic, the country (Tanzania) had declared Covid-19 Free.

Kenya had to block Tanzanian truck drivers from entering the country fearing they would spread the virus.

In the latest row, the Tanzania government had jailed 26 Maasais who were arrested selling wares.

They were arraigned and convicted of being in the country illegally and ordered to pay Sh1 million fine or serve one year in Tanzanian jail.

The fine was later paid by Kajiado Governor Joseph ole Lenku and the women were released after spending four days in prison.

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