Nairobi, Kenya, 17 February 2003 - His Highness the Aga Khan, Imam (spiritual leader) of the Ismaili Muslims was today received by President Mwai Kibaki at State House, Nairobi.
The two leaders held wide-ranging discussions covering the implementation of previously articulated and new expansion plans for the agencies of the Aga Khan Development Network (AKDN) in Kenya specifically and Eastern Africa and the Indian Ocean region more generally. These include investments of US$ 40 million in the health sector and US$ 30 million in the education sector.
The Aga Khan, who is on a working visit to the region, also later held separate meetings with various senior Government Ministers with specific responsibilities in the social and economic development sectors. In addition to briefings on the Government's development priorities in key sectors, discussions with the Ministers focused on specific expansion plans that agencies of the Network are currently undertaking in the country.
During his current visit, the Aga Khan is expected to visit sites where new educational institutions being established by the Aga Khan Education Service are being planned or are under construction.
Social development institutions of the AKDN have been active in Kenya for several decades. In addition to education, health and rural development programmes sponsored by the Aga Khan Foundation, the Aga Khan Education Service operates some fifteen schools and the Aga Khan Health Service runs three major hospitals in Nairobi, Kisumu and Mombasa. The Aga Khan University has also begun offering its Advanced Nursing Studies Programme at a Nairobi campus.
The Aga Khan Fund for Economic Development (AKFED) has been promoting enterprise and development in the private sector in Kenya since the mid-1960's. Project companies of Industrial Promotion Services (Kenya) Ltd are active in sectors as diverse as agroprocessing, packaging and power generation. The Serena group of lodges and hotels remains a leader in the tourism development sector. Publicly quoted financial institutions such as Diamond Trust Bank and the Jubilee Insurance Company continue to expand their services at the regional level.
The Aga Khan, who arrived in Nairobi last night, continues his visit to Kenya.