A couple of months ago, would-be presidential candidate Barack Obama said of Kenya -- during a trip to his father's homeland, no less -- that it was a corrupt place. "There is a crisis" in Kenya, he said, "a crisis that's robbing an honest people of the opportunities they fought for.'' He went on; you can read his remarks here. That's not really the point. Nor is this, necessarily: The Kenyan ambassador to the U.S., Peter Ogego, didn't take kindly to Obama's comments and, in a letter to the senator from Illinois, told him, "Your unprovoked and uncalled for statements were in bad taste" and claimed that Obama was seeking only "cheap publicity and inconsequential populism."
That's just a little context for this item: Peter Ogego was actually in town -- this week, looks like -- to talk business with Mayor Laura Miller and Mayor Pro Tem Don Hill, who, it says in the same article from Nairobi's The Nation, have a "deep interest to develop bilateral trade and investment cooperation with Kenya." The story says Ogego also gave a speech at the African Chamber of Commerce (which is on Corinth Street downtown), met with Ross Perot Sr. and Jr. and got a key to the city from Don Hill, who had actually gone to Kenya in October "on a business exploration mission." So, see, Ogego's right and Obama's wrong. Because Don Hill would never go somewhere where there are allegations of corruption. --Robert Wilonsky