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Raila, Mudavadi dish dirt over major scams

By Julius Sigei, May 7 2012
The political rivalry between Prime Minister Raila Odinga and his deputy Musalia Mudavadi on Monday escalated into an ugly spat with both camps threatening to spill the dark secrets of their opponents. Mr Odinga’s presidential campaign secretariat invited Mr Mudavadi to explain his role in a series of scandals, including Anglo Leasing and Goldenberg, in which billions of shillings were lost. The deputy PM office responded swiftly, claiming that the PM has his fair share of skeletons in the cupboard and cited the Kazi Kwa Vijana scandal, the maize saga and the National Social Security Fund (NSSF) drama. Weekend chaos The threats to bring out the soft belly of Mr Odinga and Mr Mudavadi comes hot on the heels of a weekend during which their supporters clashed at a funeral in the latter’s Sabatia constituency. On Monday, Mr Odinga’s campaigns director of communication, Mr Barrack Muluka, dispatched a 12-point statement to media houses in which he sought to discredit Mr Mudavadi’s democratic credentials right from the time he became an MP in 1989. “We shall invite him to explain a lot of things, among them his role as the confluence of Anglo Leasing and Goldenberg affairs and the mystery of Sh16 billion,” said Mr Muluka. But in a 10-point rejoinder, Mr Mudavadi’s spokesman Kibisu Kabatesi dismissed the allegations as ‘irritability about a great loss they feel.’ “In the lead up to elections, they may choose to tell stories about this corruption and it will not just be propaganda about some target individuals. The difference will be in their captivating currency. We have snippets of them in the Maize, Kazi kwa Vijana, NSSF and NHIF scams,” he said. More...

mudavadi and Raila
Prime minister, Raila Odinga (right) and his deputy, Musalia Mudavadi whisper sweet things to each other during merrier times. But the relationship turned sour after the two went separate ways a week ago.

Khalwale takes bullfight to Nyong'o

By Alphonce Shiundu, May 7 2012
Ikolomani MP Bonny Khalwale has said he will move a motion of no confidence against Medical Services Minister Anyang Nyong'o should investigation reveal fraud in payments made by the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) to private clinics. Dr Khalwale, who chairs the Public Accounts Committee - a powerful watchdog committee that tracks government spending - said that he will, in consultation with the rest of the committee members seek a special audit into the controversial payments. Once that is done, he said, he will rally MPs in moving a censure motion against Prof Nyong’o for failing to stop fraud within his docket. The scrutiny after a special audit, Dr Khalwale said, will take two weeks after which the motion of no confidence will be filed. “This is not loose talk. I want to follow the process. So that when the matter finally comes to the House, we can put Prof Nyong’o under pressure,” said Dr Khalwale. “The motion of censure is viable”. “It does not make sense for MPs who earn Sh1 million a month to pay a maximum of Sh2,000, whereas people who earn very little are supposed to part with almost Sh500. The government raised the amount from Sh320 to Sh2,000. That is over 500 per cent increase,” said Dr Khalwale. More...

Mumias journalist receives threats

By Shaban Makokha, May 7 2012
A Mumias-based journalist has recorded statements with the area police after he was threatened by a known person. Joel Eshikumo, who corresponds for the Weekly Citizen in Butere-Mumias, recorded a statement at the Mumias Police Station claiming that he was threatened by a businessman in Mumias town. “He threatened to send people to my house and finish me because I took photographs in court when he was being charged with obtaining with pretence,” said Eshikumo. He said prior to meeting with the businessman, he had been receiving calls from unknown numbers telling him to be prepared to die any time over the pictures he took in court. Mumias police chief George Seda advised the public to cease from sending threatening messages on their phones ''because technology is high and they can be caught up from wherever they are''. On 27th April 2012, the said businessman Armstrong Pino Rajul alongside Francis Kaburu appeared in court where he was charged with three counts of threatening to cause injury to property and the family of William Nengo Musumba, malicious damage and forceful detention of the said family. More...

Church to rein in rogue pastors

By our correspondent, May 7 2012
The Church could be headed for a shakeup if a bid by mainstream and top Pentecostal churches to rein in rogue preachers succeeds. At the heart of the move is the Evangelical Alliance of Kenya, which is worried that deceitful individuals have turned numerous houses of worship into commercial entities. With pastors, including leading televangelists, also increasingly making headlines for involvement in crimes such as extortion, murder, human trafficking, rape and defilement, the umbrella body is equally concerned that this is critically hurting the image of the Church. More...

Three wisemen: From left Joseck Okisai of Teso, Richard Walukano of Bukusu and Reuben Butaki of Sabaot talk peace among their respective groups

By Leonard Wamalwa, May 7 2012
Supreme councils of three major communities living in Trans Nzoia and Bungoma counties are engaged in talks to look for better ways of enhancing a peaceful coexistence and harmonious way of sharing power and resources under the devolved governance. The 30 elders from Bukusu, Sabaot and Teso communities that are perceived to be the original inhabitants of the two counties are basing on the recently signed peace accord between them at Mabanga Farmers Training Center and witnessed by the vice president Kalonzo Musyoka. In a meeting held at Kipsongo training center in Kitale, the elders led by their chairmen, Reuben Butaki of Sabaot, Joseck Okisai of Teso and vice chair of Bukusu Richard Walukano said that they are committed to have the three communities exist harmoniously and root out all the perennial conflicts that have been surrounding them especially during electioneering times. "We are here to make follow ups pertaining the accord that we had signed last year in Mabanga to know the way forward on what to do before, during and after the next general elections as far as our unity and peace is concerned," said Okisai the Teso chairman. They noted that the councils are championing for the ironing out of the root causes of the regular conflicts that always see some of their people lose lives, property and get displaced from their homes. In their discussions the elders looked at various ways that shall address the contentious issues attached to the new constitution in relation to equitable resource allocation among the communities and the elective seats created by the new laws. More...

Webuye residents alarmed at large number of coffin shops at hospital entrance

By Rosemary Wachiye, May 2 2012
Webuye residents have raised alarm over the increase in the number of coffin workshops near the Webuye District hospital premises. They claim that the continuous sight of coffins at the gate of the hospital generates fear in patients and their relatives that their patient may not survive. "The shops selling coffins have increased in number, some are displayed opposite the hospital gate making the sick to lose hope in getting well," said Mrs. Melzar Wakhungu. They explain that when one is taking care of an invalid; they need hope of healing and not a sight that dampens their spirit. "When we bring our sick relatives to hospital it’s because we are searching for healing and good health and not death therefore, something ought to be done to stop this," said Mr. Patrick Nyongesa. Some of them claimed of being approached to purchase a coffin yet their patients were recovering from their sickness. "Other are now going to the extent of checking those who go in with patients suffering from serious cases so that they can approach them to buy the coffin without finding out how the patient is fairing," said Mark Simiyu. The residents are now calling upon the Municipal council of Webuye to put measures in business licensing to curb such from affecting the livelihood of the people. More...

webuye coffins
Some of the coffins on display outside Webuye District Hospital. Residents claim that the continuous sight of coffins at the gate of the hospital generates fear in patients and their relatives that their patient may not survive. Photo: Westfm

Rise in coffin shops likened to ravenous antics of death merchants

Mudavadi picks biggest political fight yet

By Oliver Mathenge, May 2 2012
Mvita MP Najib Balala on Wednesday teamed up with Deputy Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi in the newly-formed United Democratic Forum Party (UDFP) on whose ticket they will seek political office in the next elections. They formally quit the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), citing differences with Prime Minister Raila Odinga triggered by what they described as a lack of internal democracy. Last week, Mr Balala had promised a big announcement was to be made by MPs who were unhappy in ODM. Coast MPs Kazungu Kambi (Kaloleni), Fahim Twaha (Lamu West) and Abu Chiaba (Lamu East) were among 28 legislators who attended the event at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre, Nairobi. In addition to ditching the ODM, Mr Mudavadi resigned as Local Government minister but held on to the deputy PM’s post stating that it was part of the National Accord and he could only be removed by Parliament. “When we created the coalition government, four positions were written into the National Accord whose holders could only be removed by resignation, ill-health, Parliament, a court of law or the collapse of the coalition government. These positions include the office of the Deputy Prime Minister,” Mr Mudavadi said. Deputy PM Uhuru Kenyatta was the first to hold on to the post when he resigned as Finance minister in January after the International Criminal Court (ICC) confirmed charges of crimes against humanity he faces at The Hague. More...

Mudavadi and Balala
Political whispers: Musalia Mudavadi, the deputy prime minister and Mvita MP, Rajib Balala in close political intrigue they hope will power their ambitions to State House. Photo: Stephen Mudari

Leopard terror in Teso: Residents of Adongos village in Teso South District are living in fear following invasion of a marauding leopard that has forced families to vacate their homes. Okame Location chief Vincent Echakara said the stray leopard has killed nine sheep since it struck last Thursday. He said six sheep belonged to the Chakol Catholic parish, two to area assistant chief Quintin Esibate and one to Dr Adung’o Omuse. Villagers asked KWS to kill the animal or else they will hunt it down. More...

Central Kenya warms up to Mudavadi

By Francis Ngige, May 2 2012
Musalia Mudavadi's move to the United Democratic Forum (UDF) and his entry into the presidential race have created a new twist in Mt Kenya politics. Having been the "unofficial" running mate of Uhuru Kenyatta in the 2002 General Election, Mudavadi's move drew interest from the region with some leaders describing it as wise. And with the pending International Criminal Court case complicating issues for Uhuru, Mudavadi might step in as a compromise candidate to inherit Mt Kenya votes. The residents of the region keenly followed his announcement Wednesday, which was beamed live on all major television stations. Of interest to the locals is the fact that Uhuru allies such as Jeremiah Kioni, Nderitu Mureithi, Nelson Gaichuhie, and Njoroge Baiya attended the launch at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre. Mwea MP Peter Gitau welcomed Mudavadi's announcement saying it had raised the stakes in the race to State House. "He is viewed as sober, and the Mt Kenya people can decide that he is the best bet to succeed President Kibaki," said Gitau. The MP said in Uhuru's absence, Mudavadi would be easier to sell in the region compared to other presidential aspirants. "If by any chance Uhuru is not going to run, but we still believe he would be on the ballot, then Mudavadi is the better option," said Gitau. More...

Suba fisherman drowns A fisherman on drowned on Monday evening after he jumped into Lake Victoria. Ramogi Fredrick Odira of Murongo Beach, Waware sub location, Mfangano Island, leapt from a fishing boat into the lake. He was in the company of another fisherman, Julius Omondi, when the incident occurred around 4pm. Mfangano East chief, Patrick Lumumba, said the deceased could have been drunk when he leapt to his death. Lumumba said most fishermen operating on the lake often go fishing while under influence of alcohol and outlawed drugs. “Most of these fishermen go to the lake when they are drunk and end up committing crime or drowning,” the administrator said. Following the drowning, relatives and fishermen camped at the beach as the search for the body commenced. Meanwhile, the body of one of the two fishermen who died in Mbita district when their boat capsized due to bad weather on Lake Victoria has been recovered. More...

Shock as Bungoma family receives a package of human bones

By Mishi Ziro and Valerie Bunyasi, May 1 2012
A family in Bungoma is in shock after it received a package which was wrapped in a carton box and addressed to them delivered at their home in Marell within Bungoma town by a teenage boy who claimed that he had been send by a certain Mr. John. Gladys Atiang who is a sister-in- law to Mr. Robert Atiang who had visited the family on Saturday received the package as her in-laws were still in church. “I was home alone as I had arrived earlier from church, when a teenage boy whom I did not recognize knocked at the door and gave me the package wrapped in a carton box which was in a plastic paper bag, I took the package since it was addressed to my in-laws and kept it in the house”, she said Miss Atiang said that she gave the package to her hosts later in the evening that opened it and were shocked to find a human skull and other bones; the terrified family took the package outside and left it at the balcony and alerted the police. Joan Atiang who is the owner of the house said that the action terrified her family so much that they were unable to sleep the whole night, she wonders who could have send them that package as it was such an inhuman act. The district criminal information officer in Bungoma south Zabed Maina said that his officers were conducting thorough investigations to certain the real cause of that action and who is behind it. More...

bungoma skull
Gladys Atiang who received the package displays the gory contents to Bungoma police.

Wako denies marginalising Teso: Former Attorney General Amos Wako has denied claims by Teso youth that he contributed to marginalisation of their community. “I was not a politician to execute government policies. That was the work of line ministries. I contributed significantly to the creation of Teso North district. Records are there,” Wako told more than 200 youths from Teso North at Hotel Levantes in Amagoro. Spokesman Oluku Epuret said Teso youth had been “used as ladder” by previous governments before being dumped. “How safe are we under your leadership?” he asked Wako, who is eyeing the Busia Senator seat. More...
Mudavadi to name his party tomorrow

By Joseph Otieno, May 1 2012
Deputy Prime Minister and minister for Local Government Musalia Mudavadi will tomorrow announce his political vehicle he intends to use to clinch the presidency. Making the announcement during this year’s Labour Day celebrations at Uhuru Park in Nairobi, Mudavadi said after keeping his followers guessing for long, he will be giving them direction on the next move. In the recent times, Mudavadi has been linked to various parties such as New Ford Kenya a party whose ticket Justice Minister Eugene Wamalwa has declared will use to seek to be the fourth president of the Republic of Kenya. Mudavadi has also been linked to UDFP, a party comprising of youthful politicians like Abdikadir Mohammed. Tomorrow’s announcement will definitely bring to an end speculation over Mudavadi’s political future after he fell out with Prime Minister Raila Odinga over a clause in the ODM’s Constitution which gives Raila a direct presidential ticket. His announcement comes at a time when his supporters across the country including those from Lugari have had mixed reactions over his impending exit from ODM. A section of ODM supporters from Lugari district have distanced themselves from recent remarks made by Lugari branch ODM chairperson Mr. Nabii Daraja Nabwera where he openly declared his support for the Prime Minister Raila Odinga as the party’s preferred presidential candidate. More...

wycliffe musalia mudavadi
Musalia Mudavadi, the deputy prime minister addressing the crowd during a previous function. Tomorrow he will announce his political vehicle after quitting ODM two weeks ago.

Fraud in Bumula CDF: Allegations of fraud at the Bumula CDF kitty have prompted CID officers in Bungoma to launch investigations into a Sh245,000 payment to a contractor who claims not to have received the cash. Two chiefs from Bumula, Mathew Kasisi and Shaff Fwamba Juma, who are signatories to the account from where the money was withdrawn last month, were summoned to appear before the Bungoma South CID boss yesterday for grilling. More...
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