Almost immediately after Obama’s comments Kenyans on Twitter (#KOT) started a new trend called #someonetellobama, depicting their views on Obama’s remarks.
“This year alone, reporters have exposed corruption here at home and around the world,” Obama said. “They’ve risked everything to bring us stories from places like Syria and Kenya, stories that need to be told. And they’ve helped people understand the ways in which we’re all connected — how something that happens or doesn’t happen halfway around the world or here in Washington can have consequences for American families.”
It is this paragraph that has rubbed Kenyans the wrong way, with many feeling the statement has long lasting negative impressions on the country, which recently carried out a peaceful election process.
In the trend Kenyans lashed out at Obama, emerging as the second most trending topic in the country after president-elect Uhuru Kenyatta.
Although some Kenyans remain sympathetic with Obama, saying his words may have been misinterpreted, many are demanding an apology.
Mr.President,comparing Kenya with Syria is Wrong,Unfair&Incorrect.Even at height of PEV,we didnt get near Syria #SomeonetellObama
— KaaraWainaina (@KaaraWainaina) March 10, 2013
#SomeoneTellObama to stop watching CNN. he cannot demean kenya like that. This article tinyurl.com/cfpd89l is so offensive.#kenyawins
— Denis Munene (@delemu) March 10, 2013
Dont insult ur motherland @barackobama else we curse u! #SomeoneTellObama am a proud Kenyan journalist n ur comments r unfair
— Michuki Gavana (@michukipn) March 11, 2013
Others noted with concern that the US president is yet to congratulate Kenyatta on his victory, begging the question as to whether America was rooting for another candidate.
Many feel the sentiments expressed by US Secretary of State John Kerry fell short of congratulating the new president, and want Obama to speak publicly, as he did before the election, posting a three minute video asking Kenyans to vote peacefully.
Kenyans on Twitter have formed a formidable force in the recent past, forcing international news stationssuch as CNN to swallow their pride and retract negative stories about Kenya.