President Barack Obama is nearing the end of his time in office and after nearly two full terms in the White House, he will finally make a trip to Kenya.
It is the country from which his father hailed—a fact that is the source of endless obsession for his Republican rivals.
The president’s connection to the African country made him an extremely popular presidential candidate throughout the entire continent back in 2008.
In addition to having an ancestral connection to the country, the president also touted an impressive list of promises, such as boosting electricity throughout Africa. Many of these promises have failed to come to fruition.
Now Obama is headed to Kenya for the first time as president, but it won’t be to discuss any of his faltering promises.
The White House said Obama will visit the country in July for the Global Entrepreneurship Summit and meet with the country’s controversial leader, Uhuru Kenyatta.
The summit brings together business leaders and international organizations from across the globe. This year will mark the first time the summit takes place in sub-Saharan Africa.
While this is Obama’s first time traveling to Kenya as president, he did visit the country when he was a U.S. senator.
He has visited other African countries throughout his presidency, but never made it back to his father’s home country.
It’s a disappointing absence considering the country even called for its airport to be upgraded in order to better accommodate Air Force One.
It’s also important to note, however, that political scandal played a major role in the president’s hesitancy to travel back to his father’s homeland.
Kenyatta has been under investigation by the International Criminal Court in The Hague for much of the president’s time in office. Kenya’s leader had been indicted on five counts of crimes against humanity for his alleged role in post-election violence back in 2008 that killed roughly 1,200 people, AFP reported.
Kenyatta insisted he was innocent, however, and in December the case against the 53-year-old leader was dropped.
Following the controversy, the White House hopes the trip will provide “another opportunity for dialogue with the government and civil society on [human rights] issues.”