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Why Uhuru decided to a make surprise visit to Raila’s backyard

Security has been tightened in the lakeside city before the arrival of the head of state.

President Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila Odinga share a light moment at Uzima University in Kisumu on June 29, 2015.

President Kenyatta’s visit aims to woo locals barely 100 days to the August elections in a region where National Super Alliance (Nasa) leader Raila Odinga enjoys near fanatical support and is known to be as the bedrock of opposition politics.

Security has been tightened in the lakeside city before the arrival of the head of state at a time when the main opposition party in the area, Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) is conducting its primaries in the region.

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Development projects

State House Spokesman Manoah Esipisu was however quick to point out that the president’s tour was not political but will be used to highlight key development projects that the Jubilee Government has initiated since it came to power in 2013.

During his tour, President Kenyatta is set to focus on upgrading the Kisumu Port and potential value addition in the fisheries sector which is the main economic activity in the area.

The president has also already set aside funds through the Environment Ministry to tackle the water hyacinth menace that has greatly affected Lake Victoria.

President Kenyatta will at the same time preside over the 90th Kenya Music Festivals State Gala at Kisumu State Lodge.

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However opposition leaders have termed the planned visit by President Kenyatta to Kisumu county as ill-timed.

The ODM politicians said the visit was “too little too late” for a region he had marginalised with regard to development.

The President's high-powered delegation will be led by newly appointed Jubilee Party Secretary-General Raphael Tuju, a pointman of the political outfit in Nyanza region.

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