Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala has defended the recent appointment of Naomi Campbell as Magical Kenya International Tourism Ambassador.

This comes after a section of Kenyans criticized CS Balala for the appointment questioning why award-winning Kenyan Hollywood actress Lupita Nyong'o was not picked for the job. 


CS Najib Balala with supermodel Naomi Campbell

Speaking at Kenyatta University on Thursday, CS Balala said that Kenya was targeting specific markets and industries. 

In addition, the CS said that the tourism ministry had been trying to get in touch with Lupita for the last five years in vain. 

"I know everybody is asking why not Lupita. Lupita has commitments and her managers cannot allow us to access her. We’ve spent the last five years looking for Lupita," CS Balala stated. 

The appointment ignited a heated debate on social medial with a section of Kenyans supporting CS Balala's decision while another section castigated the move. 

In an earlier statement, the CS mentioned that Campbell's appointment strengthens Kenya.

"Naomi Campbell will be Magical Kenya's International Tourism Ambassador. That doesn't take away from our domestic market, it only strengthens it," Balala's tweet read.