President Uhuru Kenyatta has dispatched former Prime Minister Raila Odinga to represent him in the official opening of the seventh Devolution Conference at Makueni.
Uhuru who is out of the country was to be the chief guest on Wednesday while Raila was to address delegates on Thursday. Deputy President William Ruto is set to close the ceremony on Friday.
Raila arrived at Kwa Kathoka ATC and was received by the Council of Governors led by the host Governor Kivutha Kibwana.
Moments later, Raila was joined by Interior CS Fred Matiang'i and his Devolution counterpart Charles Keter.
The ODM party chief led in the unveiling of a devolution monument as well as the planting of a commemorative tree.
Each of the governors planted a tree in the event that is set to ignite conversation about environmental conversation through tree planting.
Matiang'i planted Uhuru's tree in a colourful ceremony that was presided over by environmentalist Isaac Kalua.
The ceremony was culminated by the unveiling of the devolution monument with a plaque enlisting all the 47 govenors.
From Kwa Kathoka, Raila and the VIPs were driven to the main auditorium.
Raila also inspected several exhibition stands mounted at Makueni Boys grounds.
Other dignitaries attending the event include Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka, Senators and members of parliament.
Governors Charity Ngilu, (Kitui) and his Machakos Counterpart Alfred Mutua also stole the show in inviting Raila.