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Larry Madowo Ruffles Feathers After President Ruto’s Italy Trip Comment

Larry Madowo asked why President Ruto went to Italy while other East African presidents skipped.

Madowo’s tweet highlighting Ruto’s apparent contradiction sparked reactions from netizens, with some expressing their displeasure and urging the journalist to exercise restraint.

President William Ruto has clarified his abrupt deviation from his earlier stance of refusing to attend any meeting organized by a single country with African leaders. He became under scrutiny when CNN journalist Larry Madowo questioned Ruto’s presence in Italy after the President had previously said that he, along with other African leaders, would no longer attend such gatherings.

Madowo defended his inquiry, claiming he was simply “doing the lord’s work.”

The journalist found himself in the midst of controversy as he observed Ruto standing alongside the chairs of both the African Union (AU) and the AU Commission in Italy, while other East African presidents opted to skip the event.

Addressing the Italy-Africa Summit, President Ruto expressed gratitude to President Sergio Matterella, Prime Minister Giorgia Meloni, and the Italian government for organizing the event. He acknowledged his previous stance, stating that an invitation from a single country did not initially align with Africa’s best interests. However, he commended the pragmatic approach taken by the Italian hosts, deeming the conference different and inspiring.

Ruto reiterated the stance adopted at COP28, emphasizing that Africa sought cooperation rather than charity, rejecting paternalistic and predatory approaches. The President had earlier voiced his commitment to abstain from summits convened by a single European country, asserting that such meetings were unproductive in addressing the diverse needs of African states.

In a conversation with Mo Ibrahim on April 29, 2023, Ruto emphasized the African Union’s decision to be represented by specific leaders in discussions with other countries. This includes the chair, vice chair, and the chair of representatives, ensuring a more efficient and strategic representation for the continent.

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