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Ethnicised universities worrying

By Samuel Siringi, Oct 30 2009
Former public university vice-chancellors have been given a new lease of life by new colleges. At least five of those who headed universities in the 1990s and early 2000s have returned to positions of administration in the colleges, many of which were created in the past two years. The government has appointed them as council chairmen of the colleges, and the institutions can tap into their long-held experience in administration. However, many of them - apart from former University of Nairobi vice-chancellor Francis Gichaga, who has been appointed council chairman of Kenya Polytechnic University College - have been sent to institutions from their home areas in what reflects a worrying trend in which universities make appointments based on ethnic lines. More...

Prof Barasa Wangila
Prof Wangila Barasa (right) of Masinde Muliro University in Kakamega with President Mwai Kibaki during the inaugural graduation ceremony last year.
Kenyan envoy collapses and dies in rural Brazil

By our correspondent, Oct 30 2009
A Kenyan envoy to Brazil, Mr Pius Namachanja has died after collapsing during a tour. Reports indicate that the ambassador collapsed at a function in Uberaba, Brazil, following a suspected heart attack and was later pronounced dead after being rushed to to a local hospital. The envoy was part of a delegation comprising 26 diplomats who were visiting a farm in the Uberaba region to see the raring of Brazilian zebu cattle. Brazil media reported that the Kenyan envoy fell ill during the tour and was rushed by ambulance to the Federal University of Triangulo Mineiro's hospital. He was pronounced dead at 5.30pm Brazilian time. More...

Pius Namachanja
The late Pius Namachanja was until his death Kenya's ambassador to Brazil.

Kenya to count gays: Kenya is to carry out a census of its gay population in an effort to bolster the fight against HIV/Aids - despite homosexuality being against the law. More...
Handmade bricks improve rural housing in Zimbabwe

By IRIN, Oct 30 2009
The use of handmade bricks is revolutionizing housing in Chinhoyi, 120km north of the Zimbabwean capital, Harare, where housing estates built by poor people have mushroomed in a development that has caught the attention of the housing ministry. More...


Web addresses to change

By our correspodent, Oct 30 2009
The internet regulator has approved plans to allow non-Latin-script web addresses, in a move that is set to transform the online world. The board of Icann voted at its annual meeting in Seoul to allow domain names in Arabic, Chinese and other scripts. More...

Ministry caught with Sh109m hidden in non-existing account

By Sam Otieno, Oct 30 2009
Controller and Auditor General has identified Sh109 million deposited at the Ministry of Education under an account referred to as ‘non-existing’. It is not, however, clear as to what this account represents or why it would be appearing in the ministry’s books of account, according to a latest report on the appropriation accounts for the year ended June 30, last year. More...


Bolt's in town: Usain Bolt, the world’s fastest man, is in town. What was intended to be a private visit by the 23-year-old Jamaican multiple world sprints record holder will graduate to a celebrity tour when he meets with President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga in Nairobi on Monday as part of a busy four-day schedule. More...
Usain Bolt
Usain Bolt, the world record breaker in 100 and 200 metres is in Kenya this week.
Land grabbers surrender Mau forest land

By our correspondents, Oct 30 2009
The State’s appeal to surrender title deeds in the Mau Forest recorded a breakthrough after 12.02 hectares were returned. Ms Mary Simat returned 10 hectares she had been allocated by a former Narok South MP as a political incentive after the 2002 elections. She becomes the second individual to surrender land after Mr Nkotoi Deliga of Nakuru. More...


Stripping women: A section of Coast women leaders has threatened to strip publicly in a week if the government does not arrest drug barons. The notice was issued in the presence of Coast PC Ernest Munyi at in Mvita. More...
Kenyan ministers to be arrested by December

By Mutinda Mwanzia, Oct 30 2009
The high profile personalities suspected to have planned and bankrolled post-election violence could be arrested by December. The revelations came as the Government prepares for arrival of International Criminal Court (ICC) Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo on Thursday, next week. "In fact Moreno-Ocampo should, if possible by Christmas (would) have arrested some of the principal suspects so that Kenyans can know that the matter is weighty," said the Justice Minister Kilonzo, who has been Moreno-Ocampo’s link to Kibaki and Raila. More...

Mutula Kilonzo, kenya's justice minister
Mutula Kilonzo, the justice minister says ministers and others who sponsored violence that blighted the country during the disputed presidential elections in 2008 should be arrested for trial in the Hague by December this year. ICC prosecutor, Luis Moreno-Ocampo arrives in Kenya next week.
Hope for Migingo as Uganda survey team returns

By our correspondents, Oct 30 2009
A team of Ugandan surveyors tasked with establishing ownership of disputed Migingo Island is set to resume the exercise. East Africa Community (EAC) Minister Amason Kingi said the team, which had disengaged from the survey, would continue with the exercise. "There were various issues which emerged in the course of the survey that resulted in the parties failing to agree," he explained. The survey stalled in July after surveyors from the two countries differed on technicalities. More...


Ethnicing crime condemned: Clerics in Eldoret have cautioned residents against interpreting crime along tribal lines. More..
Luhya leaders clash over US visa ban on top official

By our correspondents, Oct 29 2009
Luhya leaders have differed over the visa ban by US on a senior government official. On Tuesday, foreign affairs minister, Moses Wetangula said Kenya will fight the ban mundu khu mundu (man by man). Yesterday Planning Minister Wycliffe Oparanya said the action against a senior government official was unfair."The problem we have here cannot be solved by an individual. Commitment to reforms and fighting corruption requires political good will." When reached on Wednesday, the US Ambassador Michael Ranneberger said: "I’m not going to comment on the minister’s statement". Housing Minister Soita Shitanda also hit out at the US, saying it had overstepped its mandate. "America should respect us. It should not treat us like a colony," he said. Ikolomani MP Bonny Khalwale said Wetangula should know that Kenya was part of a global village and must observe international norms by addressing issues of corruption, impunity, nepotism, and institutional and constitutional reforms. More

Bonny KhalwaleSoita Shitanda
Dr Bonny Khalwale, MP for Ikolomani (left) and Soita Shitanda, minister for housing and MP for Malava (right) clashed over the merits of US visa ban to top government official. Minister for economic development, Wycliffe Oparanya and MP for Butere (below left) and Moses Wetangula, foreign affairs minister and MP for Sirisia (below right) both hit at US with Wetangula promising retaliation in the customary Luhya cry mundu khu mundu.
Moses Masika WetangulaWycliffe Ambetsa Oparanya
Sh47m boost for farmers in Western

By Joel Okwayo, Oct 29 2009
The Government has disbursed more than Sh47 million as grants to farmers in Western Province. Western Provincial Director of Agriculture John Cheruiyot said the money was given to groups whose proposals were vetted and approved by the District Agricultural Committees. It is to help farmers start projects to improve their income. He said some of the proposals funded focused on poultry, bee keeping and planting crops aimed at boosting lives of people living with HIV. More...


Drunk police arrested: It was drama galore in Wundanyi town when the area police boss stormed a popular entertainment joint and flushed out drunken police officers. The five officers, who were having the time of their lives, were shocked. More...
Kisumu boda boda reap where matatu touts, police clash

By Winsley Masese, Oct 29 2009
Anti-riot police in Kisumu engaged matatu operators in running battles for the second day. Police on Wednesday lobbed tear gas canisters to disperse the touts, who were fighting over control of matatu routes and termini. At the centre of the battles that have left shops burnt, scores of people injured and transport paralysed are cartels, where a group levies illegal taxes on matatu operators. Rival members of cartels fought after they differed over who should control the bus park in Kondele and the main terminus. More...

Rachel Shebesh
Rachel Shebesh, ODM nominated MP from Khwisero has been appointed UN rapporteur for disaster reduction in Africa at a meeting in South Africa.
Shebesh gets UN post

By our correspondent, Oct 29 2009
Nominated MP Rachel Shebesh has been appointed a special UN rapporteur for disaster reduction in Africa. This means she will be charged with the responsibility of lobbying African heads of state and MPs to pass laws that are environmentally sound and lobbying governments to provide funding for issues related to climate change. Ms Shebesh received the honorary title on Wednesday at a meeting of the Pan African Parliament in Midrand, South Africa. More...

In Taita, they smoke bhang to keep evil spirits away

By Jonathan Manyindo, Oct 28 2009
The battle against use of bhang among the Taita is losing ground due to certain beliefs about the powers of the weed. Apparently, Taita residents believe that the cultivation, marketing and consumption of bhang wards off evil spirits among the community. This belief is hampering the fight against the illicit trade and increasing the number of bhang traffickers in the larger Taita to an alarming level. A number of consumers of this drug have been turned into zombies. After intensified crackdown against the dealers by security agencies, trafficking in the forbidden crop has taken a different turn, with more women dealing in the weed. More...

Bob Marley with marijuana
Bob Marley high on marijuana (kaya) which is smoked as a recreation drug throughout the world. In Taita however, its more than a drug; it is a counter magic against evil forces.
Shock as kidnappers harvest body parts

By Dominic Wabala, Oct 28 2009
Police have stepped up the war on kidnappers and recently killed eight suspects. The killings, by Flying Squad and Special Crime Prevention Unit detectives, come amid reports of kidnappers who may be seizing people to harvest body organs. According to a victim who reported his ordeal at Kasarani Police Station on September 24, he was held for four days before being released by his abductors after his organs were found to be “useless”. More...

Ligale calms tempers over constituency boundaries

By our correspondent, Oct 28 2009
Andrew Ligale, the Interim Independent Boundaries Review Commision chairman, has stepped in to calm tempers between those calling for more constituencies and those against, saying all factors would be considered, including the economy. Ligale said his team will have to harmonise the total populace to form a constituency in urban areas, another for rural areas, and a different parameter for the sparsely populated areas. "We might discard old systems where constituencies were created for the sake of it. Nairobi and other major towns like Mombasa, Kisumu, Nakuru and Eldoret might be considered for an harmonised minimum population each constituency should have," said Ligale. More

Andrew Ligale
Andrew Ligale, the chairman of IIBRC: All factors will be considered in the boundaries review project including population density, rural, urban, remote geographical features. PNU is rooting for one man one vote system.
Wetangula says Kenya will retaliate US visa ban 'mundu khu mundu'

By Henry Owuor, Oct 28 2009
We will hit back mundu khu mundu (man to man), Kenya's Foreign Minister Moses Wetang’ula said on Wednesday over the US decision to impose a visa ban on a senior government official.Addressing the Press at his office, Mr Wetang’ula described the US move, the second such action within four weeks as ''meddlesome’’. He said: “It is unacceptable that an assistant minister walks into our country, makes a statement and walks out. The statement made by Johnnie Carson is totally out of order.’’ More...


MP charged with Sh41m fraud: Receipts issued after the purchase of hospital equipment for the Kenyatta National Hospital are forgeries, a Kenya Revenue Authority official stated on Tuesday. Mr Elijah Ndegwa Chimera was testifying in a case in which Naivasha MP John Mututho is accused of fraudulently obtaining Sh41.3 million from KNH as reimbursement for import duty and Value Added Tax. More...
Police raid on home of Webuye journalist condemned

By our correspondent, Oct 27 2009
Civil rights groups have criticised the recent police raid on the home of a journalist in Webuye. The groups on Sunday asked the area police chief to investigate the raid as it interfered with press freedom. Police raided the house of Mr Robert Juma, a journalist with a local radio station, and warned him to avoid negative reporting on the force because it was affecting their work, they claimed. More...


End of an era as Yahoo shuts Geocities.more
Vienna kissing
Spotted in Vienna by Chris Mole is this innocent woman caught in the line of love crossfire by the kissing couple.
Wafula denies inciting Kikuyu, Kalenjin

By our correspondent, Oct 27 2009
A human rights activist was on Friday accused of inciting wananchi to violence and disobedience of the law. Mr Kennedy Wanjala Wafula, the executive director of the Centre for Human Rights and Democracy, denied the charges against him in an Eldoret court. Mr Wafula, who was represented by lawyers David Rioba Omboto and John Nyandoro, was charged with claiming on October 9, that “ethnic communities are arming themselves with firearms in Uasin Gishu”. More...

Obama ignores Kibaki bans Kenyan official

By Bernard Namunane, Oct 27 2009
The Obama administration on Monday revoked the visa of a top Kenyan government official. Three more would also be banned as soon as the paperwork was ready, the United States assistant secretary for African Affairs, Mr Johnnie Carson, announced on Monday. The visa is intended to put pressure on government to speed up reforms. It is a particularly bold step coming so soon after President Kibaki wrote to President Barack Obama to protest against the direct targeting of individual members of his government. Mr Carson refused to name the official, only saying he has a US visa and travels widely on government business. More...


US assistant secretary of State Johnnie Carson delivers the news that a top government official who travels a lot has been banned from US soil for promoting impunity and impeding reforms.
Were's father wants widows blocked from his estate

By our correspondents, Oct 27 2009
Slain MP Mellitus Mugabe Were’s father now wants the grant of letters of administration made to his two daughters-in-law revoked. Mr Anthony Were claims this is because an illegal law firm filed all documents in the succession cause and the proceedings to obtain the grant. It is through Koceyo & Amadi Company Advocates that Ms Maria Palma and Ms Agnes Wairimu applied to the High Court to allow them withdraw Sh1.2 million from their late husband’s bank account. The Advocates Act requires that only a legal entity can file or take instructions in court. High Court judge David Onyancha declared the firm illegal recently after it emerged that two advocates were operating it without following the law. More...

Mellitus Were
Slain Embakasi MP, Mellitus Were. His estate was handled by fake lawyers.
Kisii man jailed for life for defiling niece aged just six

By our correspondents, Oct 27 2009
A man has been jailed for life by a Kisii court for defiling his six-year-old niece. Kisii Chief Magistrate Maxwel Gicheru handed Evans Mogire Kebwaro a life jail term for the offence he committed in Kiogoro Division, Kisii District. The child narrated to the court how Kebwaro forced her into their house as she harvested rainwater. She said she her brothers left when it started raining and her uncle took advantage of their absence to subject her to the ordeal. "He removed my panties and did bad things to me. It was very painful," she told the court, amid sobs. Former Java Coffee House Managing Director John Cardon Wagner was last month sentenced to 15 years in jail for defiling three teenage girls. More...

ODM, PNU agree on new constitution

By David Ochami, Oct 27 2009
One of the contentious issues isolated by the Committee of Experts on constitution review appears to have been ironed out. PNU and ODM legislators on the Parliamentary Select Committee (PSC) overseeing the process approve of proposals to implement some constitutional changes in phases. In a meeting with the MPs yesterday, CoE said it proposed to retain key institutions and offices for a smooth handover - a proposal they welcomed. The consensus on transitional issues, however, did not carry on to choosing a system of government. It has also emerged that the CoE will be proceeding on a retreat this week to prepare a harmonised Draft Constitution. More...

Desterio Oyatsi
Desterio Oyatsi, lawyer for Kobil wants Pan Paper Mills wound up to pay Shs 537m owing to the oil retailer.
Kobil sinks last nail in Webuye paper firm

By Nancy Akinyi, Oct 27 2009
Kobil Petroleum Limited wants Pan-Paper Mills E.A Limited wound up over its inability to pay over Sh537 million debt. The oil firm through advocate Desterio Oyatsi argues that the paper miller’s nominal capital is enough to settle the outstanding debt. The suit papers state that Pan Paper’s nominal capital as at March 14, last year stood at Sh1,186,200,000 and lists the Government as the largest share-holder with over 5 million shares. Finance PS Joseph Kinyua through State Counsel Waigi Kamau has been given 14 days to file his reply on behalf of the Government in relation to the winding up petition. More...

So near yet so far for Mukumu girl in global competition

A Kenyan student who needed to move only five places to get closer to bagging a Canadian scholarship has been eliminated. Ms Lorrie Mukirazi from Kakamega needed to move to top 20 candidates to stand a good chance of winning a coveted university scholarship in Canada. In a global competition, Ms Lorries Mukirazi was just five places within striking distance of making the 20-student list. Ms Mukirazi dropped out after failing to get the requisite votes polled exclusively through the internet by the time time the deadline ended on Oct 16. The Kitui campus-based Ms Mukirazi was born in Kakamega, Western Kenya in 1989 to a humble family. The first born daughter of Margaret Maywaka studied at Mukumu Girls High School. More...

Lorrie Mukirazi
Lorrie Mukirazi from Kakamega. She was within a whisker of winning a scholarship to study in Canada sponsored by Sprott-Shaw Community College Class Act Canada. More
Ugandan magistrates told to smile in court

By Charles Ariko, Oct 26 2009
The Secretary to the Judiciary, Dorcus Okalany, told the judges that smiling does not compromise their work, but instead makes them friendlier. “Do not scare the public. Try to smile. When you smile it does not mean that you are not doing your work,” Okalany told the magistrates on Friday. She was officiating at the closing of a three-day workshop for magistrates, court registrars and administrators at Ridar Hotel in Kampala. Okalany said most people feared going to courts because of the bad atmosphere which scares witnesses testifying. More...

Chebukaka confirmed as Kenya's envoy to UK but Muchemi refuses to hand over

By our correspondent, Oct 26 2009
Mr Addison Chebukaka has been confirmed as Kenya's High Commissioner to the United Kingdom. A career diplomat, Mr Chebukaka from Bungoma, replaces the long serving Joseph Muchemi who was recalled in August. However it is understood that Mr Muchemi is still in London and has refused to hand over office to Mr Chebukaka bringing shame and crisis to the coveted diplomatic posting. More...

Addison Chebukaka
London: Addison Chebukaka
Kosgey accuses Ruto of undermining Raila

By our correspondent, Oct 26 2009
Cabinet minister Henry Kosgey has blamed a fellow minister from Rift Valley Province for financing some civic leaders in parts of the region to wreck ODM party and undermine Prime Minister Raila Odinga. Mr Kosgey said “several civic leaders among them civic bosses from the Rift Valley province have been holding night meetings after which they are financed to go round the province to wreck ODM and want the Kalenjin to quit ODM. More...

Nepotism rife as ministers' relatives appointed diplomats

By Peter Leftie, Oct 26 2009
Close relatives of cabinet ministers and 2007 election losers are on the latest list of Kenya’s ambassadors and high commissioners. Four of the new envoys named in the list released by the Foreign Affairs ministry are siblings of cabinet ministers, while four others are parliamentary losers during the last general election. Also on the list are former provincial administrators believed to have taken sides and furthered the political interests of the three main protagonists during the 2007 presidential election, President Kibaki, Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka. More...

Moses Masika Wetangula
Moses Wetangula, the foreign affairs minister.Ministers have pushed their relatives to lucrative foreign postings.
Kalenjin launch council of elders as a political tool

By our correspondents, Oct 26 2009
Rift Valley politicians and leaders from Kalenjin sub tribes met on Saturday to unite the community and launch a council of elders. The council will be mandated to spearhead reconciliation and address political concerns of the community. In a show of unity, the leaders vowed to end their political differences. The event was held at Reformed Church in Eldoret and was attended by three ministers and eight MPs. "Today marks a new dawn and we hope the council will help chart the destiny of the community," said Industrialisation Minister Henry Kosgey. More...

MP accuses Kibaki of intimidating Ligale Commission

By David Ochami, Oct 26 2009
Nominated MP Mohamed Abdi Affey has accused President Kibaki and Central Kenya MPs of intimidating the Interim Independent Boundaries Review Commission (IIBRC). The MP accused the leaders of plotting to dominate the country and less populated communities by applying selective logic. The MP also accused the leaders of "provoking" some regions and "polarising the country" and said the President and his backers should not impose formulae on the IIBRC. On Thursday, Mr Affey reacted to proposals by Central leaders seeking to redraw electoral boundaries and increase constituencies based on population density alone. More...

Mohamed Affey
Mohamed Afeey, nominated Ford-K MP says Kibaki's 'one man one vote' call supported by central Kenya MPs is tantamount to marginalising smaller communities.
FORGET ANGLO LEASING

Kazi kwa Vijana program is a huge scam, says Jirongo

By Stephen Makabila, Oct 26 2009
Lugari MP Cyrus Jirongo has dismissed the Kazi kwa Vijana programme as a "failed project". Mr Jirongo said despite billions of shillings injected into the programme, youths in rural areas remain jobless and live in abject poverty. "The Sh15 billion pumped into the project are enough to give each constituency Sh71 million," said the MP. Jirongo, who spoke at Itumbu-Lugari Primary School in his constituency, said some corrupt individuals in Government were diverting the money to their pockets as the youths remained jobless and poor. More...

Top govt official banned by US

By our correspondent, Oct 26 2009
The United States has banned a senior Kenyan government official from visiting the country and may slap similar travel bans on three more people, US Assistant Secretary of State Johnnie Carson said on Monday. Carson sent letters to 15 prominent Kenyans in September, threatening them with travel bans for blocking political reforms agreed after last year's post-election violence that killed at least 1,300 people. The move sparked a bitter row between the United States and Kenya. President Kibaki sent a protest note to US President Barack Obama and the spat was cited as one factor weighing on the Kenyan shilling. "The U.S. government has taken the decision to revoke the visa of a senior Kenyan government official who has been obstructive in the fight against corruption," said Carson. More...

ODM minister hate sms
Words more lethal than a gun.
Top Rift Valley minister fuelled violence by sms rage

By Kipchumba Some, Oct 26 2009
Cabinet minister is among those who sent several virulent messages, which could be used against him when the prosecution begins the Standard on Sunday has learnt. The Orange Democratic Party (ODM) minister from Rift Valley Province is believed to be among the 10 prominent personalities, whose names are in the Waki secret envelope, suspected to have funded or directed attacks against other communities.It is believed the Rift Valley politician, who was not in his constituency as the violence raged, sent several SMS to his key lieutenants who were instrumental in attacks. The messages believed to have originated from his mobile phone could be detrimental to the minister’s defence.More...

Western leaders happy with illegal districts

By Allan Kisia, Oct 23 2009
The Interim Independent Boundaries Review Commission (IIBRC) says the Government created new districts well aware they were illegal. Chairman Andrew Ligale said a recent court ruling that there are only 42 legal districts did not shock those behind the creation of new units. But Western Province residents said the new controversial units should stay and urged the commission to ask Parliament to legalise them. "I think it will not be fair to take away the illegal districts as people appreciate them," said Mr Ligale. He spoke during a meeting with residents at the Kakamega Social Hall. Eight members of the IIBRC accompanied Ligale. Among those attending was Keya Manyala. More...

Athanas Manyala Keya
We are happy: Athanas Keya Manyala, assistant minister for youth and gender and MP for Lurambi attended the Kakamega meeting with officials of Interim Boundaries Commission chaird by Andrew Ligale.
Wafula charged over reports Kikuyu, Kalenjin are stocking arms for 2012 ethnic war

By Vincent Bartoo, oct 23 2009
Criminal investigation officers in Eldoret have arrested a human rights activist and charged him with incitement. Mr Ken Wafula was arrested over his claims of armament of communities in the Rift Valley Province. Detectives picked him on Thursday, after a court issued a warrant of arrest. He is in custody at the Eldoret Police Station. He appeared on Friday before Eldoret Senior Resident Magistrate David Kemei and charged with two counts. Wafula was accused of uttering and publishing the words "communities are arming themselves with guns in Uasin Gishu" on October 9. "Which words implied that it was or might be desirable for the ethnic communities within the greater Uasin Gishu to arm themselves," read the charge sheet. More...

Teachers threaten to disrupt exams over scrapping of allowances

By Samwel Otieno, Oct 23 2009
Teachers are threatening to disrupt the ongoing secondary school examinations if their hardship allowances are not reinstated. The teachers have threatened to withdraw invigilation and supervisory services for the ongoing Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations if a row with the Ministry of Public Service about hardship allowances is not resolved. They are particularly disquieted with the decision to slash allowances given to teachers and civil servants working in places considered hardship areas. They claim the decision to degazette areas classified as hardship zones was done without consulting the union.More

Lawrence Majali
Knut Secretary-General Lawrence Majali (right) and Chairman George Wesonga at a previous press conference. They are demanding the government reinstates the hardship allowances recently scrapped for civil servants after hardship areas were declassified.
Central MPs tell Ligale they want equal representation

By our correspondents, Oct 23 2009
Central Kenya MPs have urged the Interim Independent Boundaries Review Commission (IIBRC) to adopt the Kriegler Commission recommendations on the review of constituency boundaries. They also want population size to be a major consideration when boundaries are reviewed. The lawmakers said they were consulting among themselves before making a joint submission to the IIBRC team during the ongoing public hearings. The team will hold public meetings in Central, Nairobi and Rift Valley provinces beginning next week. They want 'one man one vote' to mean exactly that. More...

Khaemba sent on leave over missing millions

Lake Basin development Authority

By our correspondent, Oct 22 2009
The Lake Basin Development Authority managing director Joseph Khaemba has been sent on compulsory leave pending investigations into the use of Sh40 million. Nation has learnt that the money was used without the approval of the board. Mr Khaemba said he authorised the withdrawal of the money to pay youths employed under the Kazi kwa Vijana initiative with the hope that they would recover it when the government eventually paid up. More...

Lavatree of Austria
Toilet for art's sake: This is a Lavatree spotted somewhere in Austria by traveller Michelle Rive. What is not clear is whether the toilets are meant for flying humans or some other creatures of the four legged kind? All in the name of art do we push the boundaries of human imagination.
Do Africans a favour - don't send them food aid

By Sam Kiley, oct 22 2009
The Horn of Africa is in the grip of the worst drought for 47 years! Some 23 million people are threatened with starvation! When you see children on TV with distended bellies keening over their dying parents, it would be inhuman not to be moved to tears. But do them a favour. Sit on your hands. The situation is ghastly to be sure. But, as Christmas approaches, the most intelligent response to this latest disaster is to quote Ebenezer Scrooge and cry “bah, humbug”. More...


UK's racist party leader grilled: The BNP leader Nick Griffin was repeatedly pilloried and criticised on the BBC's Question Time tonight when he was dubbed the "Dr Strangelove" of British politics after attempting to claim the mantle of Winston Churchill and struggling to explain his denial of the Holocaust. More...
Is end in sight for 19-year search for constitution?

By our correspondent, Oct 22 2009
Next week could be the turning point in the luckless chase for comprehensive reforms for the last 19 years. The Committee of Experts (CoE) mandated with the collation of popular views and harmonisation of contentious issues is in the second-last stage of drafting a new set of laws that would, if adopted, govern Kenya. But the process has not been without hidden political and deep-running internal schisms. The committee members, our enquiries revealed, have generally agreed on: A hybrid system of government more like the current one; devolution of power down to the provinces, but not the districts; abolishment of the Provincial Administration; and overhaul of the Judiciary. More...

Margaret Fitzgerald
Oldest woman passes on: Oldest woman in Canada, Margaret Fitzegerald has died aged 113. She was only among 15 oldest people on earth.
Family of Kenyan newly-wed gay men traumatised

By Muchiri Karanja, Oct 22 2009
The family of Daniel Chege - whose gay marriage to Charles Ngengi last weekend in London set off a storm of controversy across Kenya - is facing a backlash from homophobic neighbours.The harassment has taken a toll on Chege’s family in Gathiru village, Murang’a, said Ms Mary Muthoni, a neighbour. “This thing has really affected the old parents. The mother no longer wants visitors in her homestead, and the old man is no longer the same,” said Ms Muthoni, 50. Mr Gichia Gikonyo, Chege’s father, has all but lost his ability to speak ever since the pictures from the union emerged Sunday, she said. More...

Catholics and Anglicans have been in communion all along - Wabukala

By Martin Mutua, Oct 22 2009
Anglican Archbishop Eliud Wabukala has said Catholics and Anglicans have had ecumenical dialogue for a long time. Dr Wabukala also noted the recent Pope Benedict XVI’s announcement welcoming Anglican clergy had been welcomed by the Anglican Church in Britain. However, while welcoming the move, Wabukala said in Kenya, the matter was not a priority. "I don’t see a lot of difference in this new move because the Anglicans of the south are more of evangelicals, but each province takes its own decision," he said, on Thursday. The primate said the historical dialogue between the two denominations would continue on matters pertaining to the ministry and the sacrament. More...


Remember Katakwa war?: The war of leadership in the Bungoma Diocese rekindles memories of the struggle in the neighbouring Nambale Diocese, when the current Katakwa Dioceses wanted to break away. The latter’s dispute remains the fiercest fight for religious freedom since independence. It led to a breakaway of the diocese. More...
Jua Cali Bash for Wajackoyah

By our correspondent,, Oct 22 2009
African Supremacy Entertainment will present a suprise party for Prof George Wajackoyah, who plans to stand for the presidency of Kenya in 2012 this Saturday 24th October from 19.00 hours onwards. Everyone is invited to the free bash which will offer among other things free food and drinks. A California-based Kenyan DJ Johnnie will be in the mix all night. The venue is 9500 Haven Avenue, Rrancho, Cucamonga, CA US. Click here for directions.


Catholics protest over hijab in schools

The Catholic Church has written to the Government to protest a decision to allow Muslim students to wear the veil (hijab) in its sponsored public and private schools without consultations. Acting Kenya Episcopal Conference (KEC) Chairman Philip Anyolo told the Government to withdraw the directive and await further consultation and dialogue between the church and State. More...

16 year old girl who has remained an infant

This is the story of Brooke Greenberg, a 16 year old who has remained the size of an infant. Her case is unique, and scientists are researching her to determine if the fact that Brooke has not aged holds the secret to eternal youth. Her mental age is estimated to be 9-12 months old, and her physical size is that of a 6 month old. The video features Brooke's every day life of shopping trips in a stroller, rather than the normal activities you'd expect of a 16 year old. Brooke Greenberg has presented more medical mysteries than just failing to age. She recovered spontaneously from 7 perforated ulcers, a brain seizure, a stroke, and when she was 4 she was diagnosed with a brain tumor that disappeared without treatment. More...

Medical phenomenon: Brooke Greenberg who is 16 but has remained an infant is a medical phenomenon. Now doctors are using her case to carry out research into the genes that cause ageing and death. Various parts of her body are not developing in sync. She still has infant teeth and has not developed puberty.
No allowances as 25 hardship areas scrapped

By Luke Anami, Oct 21 2009
Civil servants working in 25 divisions formerly classified as hardship areas will no longer earn hardship allowances, following degazettement of their special status. Also affected are more than 90,000 teachers, who earned higher allowances compared to other civil servants, working in the same areas. The rest of civil servants will, however, be paid a uniform hardship allowance following Government decision to harmonise hardship allowances. "Civil servants will no longer be paid hardship allowances based on the percentage of their salary," Public Service Minister Dalmas Otieno said on Wednesday. More...

Archbishop Eliud Wabukala
Archbishop Eliud Wabukala, head of the Anglican Church in Kenya has rejected the offer by Pope Benedict XVI for married Anglican priests to join the Catholic Church and keep their status.
Wabukala rejects Pope's offer on married priests

By our correspondent, Oct 21 2009
Kenya's Anglican Church on Wednesday rejected an offer by Pope Benedict that would have seen married Anglican priests join priesthood in the Catholic Church. The action by the Anglican clergy potentially puts it in conflict with the Archbishop of Canterbury, Dr Rowan Williams, who had responded to the offer through a letter copied to all provinces worldwide. “I do not see why it is necessary at this point in history,” ACK Archbishop Eliud Wabukala told the Nation. “The Archbishop of Canterbury sent us letters welcoming the offer but for him, it is essentially to deal with the local England context and does not apply to other provinces,” he added. More...

Egypt denies bullying Nile basin countries over access

By Ramadhan Rajab, Oct 21 2009
Egypt has denied claims of splitting the Nile Basin member countries and blocking efforts of developing a common approach in use of River Nile waters. The visiting Egyptian Assistant Minister for Foreign and African Affairs, Mona Omar, said her country has been blamed "wrongfully" for blocking efforts to establish a permanent River-Basin Commission to implement development projects on the Nile. "Egypt is only questioning some clauses to which we are trying to reach a consensus, but we should not be taken to be objecting the cooperation. After all we (are) only at the receiving end of the Nile and we cannot control who gets what or misses what on the Nile, but our livelihood solely depends on the Nile waters that’s why we are keen on what we agree on," Mrs Omar said, adding they agreed on 33 points of the pact but disagreed on three issues. More...

Eugene Wamalwa
Saboti MP, Eugene Wamalwa clashed with Moses Masika Wetangula, the foreign affairs minister over leadership of Ford-K. The late Masinde Muliro said anyone joining politics should be ready for three things - poverty, insults and death.What happened in Nairobi will not cower me."
Wetangula, Wamalwa clash at Kamusinga

By our correspondents, Oct 21 2009
Rivalry in Ford-Kenya went a notch-higher as Foreign Affairs Minister Moses Wetang’ula and Saboti MP Eugene Wamalwa clashed in public. Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka graced the function at the weekend, where the two party leaders eyeing the top seat differed. The venue, Friends School Kamusinga, was teeming with Western Province elites who are former students. Ford-Kenya politics over-shadowed the noble cause of raising money to complete the building of the school’s Moi Education Complex. The fundraiser targeted to raise Sh7 million to complete the Sh23.1 million complex. Kimilili MP Eseli Simiyu threw the first salvo by indirectly accusing Mr Wamalwa of playing bad politics. More...

Govt buys land from Kenyatta family to resettle displaced people

By Muchemi Macharia, Oct 19 2009
Hundreds of families displaced in the election violence are being resettled on land in Nakuru District previously owned by the Kenyatta family. The more than 3,000 families, who have been camping at Mawingo IDP camp in Nyandarua, are being resettled on 1,171 acres at Gicheha farm in Rongai Division, which the government is reported to have bought from the former First Family. On Monday, Rift Valley provincial commissioner Osman Warfa said the government had bought 8,232 acres to resettle the IDPs in Nakuru, Molo and Ol Kalou. More...

lean on me
Lean on Me: In the strange world of the animal kingdom, the dog and cow need to support each other to survive the ravages of modern living in the crowded streets of Indian cities. If you can't beat them....
Ligale warned to go slow on new districts

By Dan Nyakundi, Oct 19 2009
Leaders from the Kisii community have cautioned the Interim Independent Boundary Commission to be careful on how to handle the issue of the recently created districts. The leaders criticised the stand the commission has taken over the recently created districts saying it has created a war with members of the public who benefited from the created administrative units. Led by councillor Nelson Onduko, they told the commission under the chairmanship of former assistant minister Andrew Ligale to confine itself with the issue of reviewing boundariesl. More...

AFC Leopards claw back past glory as FKL champs

By Gilbert Wandera, Oct 19 2009
An injury time red card on AFC Leopards goalkeeper Victor Omondi spoilt an otherwise great performance by the club who crushed Congo United 4-1 to lift this year’s Football Kenya Cup at City Stadium. Omondi earned his marching orders for unnecessarily shoving Zablon Mwale in his box and the referee did not hesitate to show him his marching orders and gave the visitors a penalty. The resultant penalty was easily slotted home by Lawrence Nyamboki who beat stand-in goalkeeper. More...

AFC Leopards
AFC Leopards chairman Alex Ole Magelo celebrates with his players following their 4-1 victory over Congo Boys at the City Stadium, on Tuesday. Photo: Nation
Legendary Nandi warrior remembered 104 yrs later

By Biketi Kikechi, Oct 19 2009
The Nandi community marked the 104th anniversary since the assassination of legendary leader Koitalel arap Samoei. Samoei was killed on October 19, 1905, at the height of British occupation in Kenya. On Monday, members of the community led by Industrialisation Minister Henry Kosgey met at Nandi Hills to pay tribute to the legend. More...


Today's Kenyatta Day

By Peter Leftie, Oct 20 2009
The government will not allow militias to rearm themselves and unleash terror in any part of the country, President Kibaki has warned. The president was speaking during events to mark 46th Kenyatta Day. More...

Koitalel arap Samoei
Legend: Koitalel arap Samoei
Wako, Kenyatta trade shs1bn blame over Anglo Leasing ghosts

By David Ochami, Oct 19 2009
Officials from the Attorney-General’s office have concluded discussions in Nairobi with lawyers from UK seeking compensation claims over stalled Anglo-Leasing projects. This is amid revelations that the Government has accrued penalties of 17 million Euros (Sh2 billion) from breach of contracts. It is not clear if the AG personally took part in negotiations with the lawyers. Meanwhile Treasury and the AG's office are trading blame over the identity of a firm that wired Sh1 billion to the Central Bank a couple of years ago amid a public outcry over the Anglo-Leasing swindle. More...


University lecturer kidnapped: The latest kidnap incident involves a University of Nairobi lecturer Paul Matheri Kariuki who went missing over the weekend. His kidnappers are demanding Sh5 million as ransom from his family. Head of Flying Squad Julius Sunkuli, said they had not made any headway. More...
Inyundo to speak at global business forum

By our reporter, Oct 19 2009
Boko Inyundo, Trustee of Khwisero Water Development Project, Director of the Africa Centre and Global Sector Manager at Linklaters LLP will be speaking at a high profile forum on 26-28 October, 2009. The invitation-only event is sponsored by the UK-Government’s Department of Culture, Media & Sport (CM&S) and forms part of a global multi-stakeholder initiative dubbed “C&binet”, the Creativity & Business International Network. The event will be held at ‘The Grove’, the luxury hotel resort in London, where Mr Inyundo will join business leaders from across the global creative and finance industries to debate access to finance for creative industries, new business models for online content, developing talent and securing creative rights. Speakers already confirmed for this conference billed as ‘Davos’ for the global creative industries, include Hon. Peter Mandelson, UK secretary of state for Business, Innovation and Skills, Hon. Ben Bradshaw MP, Secretary of State for CM&S, Hon. David Lammy, Minister for Higher Education and Intellectual Property in the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills; and Odile Quintin, EC Director General for Education and Culture. Eminent personalities from the Corporate and investment community confirmed as speakers include: Jean-Bernard Levy, CEO of Vivendi; Elio Leoni-Sceti, CEO, EMI Music; Neil Berkett, CEO of Virgin Media; Lucian Grange, Chairman and CEO, Universal Music Group International; and Rick Cotton, Executive Vice President and General Counsel, NBC Universal; as well as CEO/Managing Director-level Executives from the following groups, amongst others: Microsoft; Google; BT; Cisco; Spotify; Disney-ABC-ESPN Television; Ingenious Media; Ariadne Capital; Numis Corporation; Barclays Commercial; and Clifford Chance. Mr Inyundo will be speak on issues relating to ‘Creating Opportunity' and 'Developing Talent’ in the global creative economy.

Boko Inyundo
Boko Inyundo, director of Khwisero Water Development Project will be a panellist at a high profile global business forum in London.

Pope lures Anglicans: As many as 1,000 priests could quit the Church of England and thousands more may leave churches in America and Australia under bold proposals to welcome Anglicans to Rome. Entire parishes and even dioceses could be tempted to defect after Pope Benedict XVI’s decision to offer a legal structure to Anglicans joining the Roman Catholic Church. More.
Zak Sikobe
Zak Sikobe (right) and his friend, the late Franco. This was the first time Franco had taken a photo. Sadly he dropped dead before seeing how he looked like in a photo.
Man dies after fulfilling his wish of photo taken of him

By Zak Sikobe, Oct 18 2009
I said goodbye to my neighbour and young mate Franco in western Kenya on Sunday the 4th of October 2009. We took some photos together of which I promised to forward some copies as he had never had a photo of him taken. Sadly the following Thursday the 8th last week I received a call that Franco had dropped dead from pneumonia - very suspicious, no symptoms nothing. Anyway Franco's remains where committed to the ground on Wednesday 14th. After my own bereavement I thought that yet again the resources of committing Franco's remains would generally fall on me. You see Franco had looked after my old-man for some time. He always dropped by everyday to check on him and the home and read the papers. In return I felt indebted and had always looked after him and his mum, Stella financially. I am proud to say I was wrong as the responsibility was spread out. Franco worked as a transport tout in our near by local town Luanda.

Franco
Strange twist of fate: The late Franco from Ebusikhale Epang'a. This is his first ever photo taken last week by his friend, Zak Sikobe. As fate would have it, he died before having a chance to see an exact copy of himself.
Millions unaccounted for in Busia, Bungoma, Kitale law courts

By our correspondent, Oct 18 2009
The Auditor General has uncovered massive irregularties in Busia, Bungoma and Kitale law courts. Revenue totalling Sh5,817,183.05 in respect of fines and forfeitures collected at Busia Law Courts was not banked intact, but was irregularly expended or held as partly paid vouchers and I Owe Yous (IOUs). “Out of the total revenue spent at source, Sh80,130 related to IOUs which had not been recovered as at June 30, 2008.” At Kitale Law Courts, the report shows that more than Sh5.6 million has not been accounted for since 2007. At Bungoma Law Courts, queries have been expressed over revenue collections totalling Sh1,825,410.50 in respect of court fees, fines and deposits, which were not banked intact as required by regulations, but were instead held irregularly as partly paid vouchers, IOUs and Refer to Drawer (RD) cheques. More...

Busia town hall
Busia Town Hall. Most projects in Western have stalled
Grameen Bank founder coming to Nairobi

A regional microcredit summit will be held in Nairobi in April 2010. Hosted by the founder of the Grameen Bank of Bangladesh, Prof Muhammad Yunus, the summit will be a challenge to high street banks whose lending criteria excludes millions of small scale businesses. Prof Yunus, whose approach to credit has revolutioned the economy in Bangladesh was recently awarded America's highest civil honor by president Obama.

Muhammad Yunus
Muhammad Yunus founder of Grameen Bank
Money for projects in Western looted

By our correspondent, Oct 18 2009
Millions of shillings meant for various projects in Nyanza and Western provinces have been misappropriated, according to a report by the Controller and Auditor General. The latest audit report indicates the money was siphoned off through irregular cheque encashments, irregular cash withdrawals, unsupported expenditures and unaccounted purchases. At Busia District Hospital, queries have been raised about Sh1,883,978.20 realised from cost-sharing. Accounting queries have also been raised against the office of the Medical Officer of Health, Siaya District. Queries have also been raised about utilisation of funds meant for various road projects in Masaba, Gucha and Busia worth more than Sh8 million. More...

Oparanya comes out fighting over CDF funds misuse

By our correspondents, Oct 17 2009
Planning Minister Wycliffe Oparanya has come out fighting off allegations that Constituency Development Funds were used to pay census officials. He has further dared MPs threatening him with a censure Motion in Parliament to go ahead. Speaking in his Butere constituency when he distributed relief food, the minister claimed he had not committed any wrong and was set to face the House. "Those accusing me of committing an offence should gather enough evidence," he said. More...

Bikini or a lamp
Yes pictures tell a story better than words. But what do you see in this photo? A bikini or a lamp? Impossible IQ question? You bet...
Sign language becomes an examinable subject

By our correspondents, Oct 17 2009
The Kenya National Examinations Council will, for the first time, administer examinations for Sign Language starting next year. Knec Chief Executive Officer Paul Wasanga said the move is aimed at providing a fair assessment to the hearing-impaired students. Also to benefit from the new move are candidates who wish to develop a career in Sign Language. More...

Union boss wants minister fired over corruption

By Robert Nyasato, Oct 17 2009
Kenya National Union of Teachers (Knut) has asked Education Minister Sam Ongeri and PS Karega Mutahi to step aside following alleged corruption in the ministry. Knut National Chairman George Wesonga said the scandals involving senior education officials were sending bad signals to the public. He urged the duo to step aside for their failure or disinterest to curb alleged looting. Speaking in Nyamira at the weekend, Mr Wesonga singled out fraudulent admission of students to P1 colleges and demanded punishment to those involved. More...

George Wesonga
George Wesonga, KNUT chairman alleges fraudulent admissions of students to primary teacher training colleges.
Kenya to bar foreigners from freehold land ownership

By Peter Opiyo, Oct 17 2009
Foreigners will be prohibited from holding freehold interests in land if Parliament approves the draft National Land Policy. The policy, being scrutinised by Parliamentary Committee on Lands and Natural Resources, seeks to bar non-citizens from having a freehold interest, instead preferring leasehold of not more than 99 years. "The Government shall ensure the standard leasehold term for land leased to non-citizens shall not exceed 99 years," the policy states. Under the existing laws, foreigners can apply for and be allocated land for any permissible use. This differs from other countries where ownership of land by foreigners is restricted. More...

Two Kenyan gay men marry each other in UK

By our correspondents, Oct 18 2009
Two Kenyan men on Saturday became the first gay couple to wed in London. Charles Ngengi, 40 and his bride, Daniel Chege Gichia, 39, became civil partners under the controversial Civil Partnership Act which came into effect in the UK in 2005 allowing couples of the same sex to have legal recognition of their relationship. Among the guests at the controversial nuptials included Chege’s former British husband’ David Cleaves, Julius Reuben, a top Tanzanian gay model as well-wishers among Kenyan residents in London. Conspicuously absent from the closely guarded ceremony were family members of both men. More...

Charles Ngegi and Daniel Chege Gichia
Charles Ngegi and Daniel Chege Gichia after their controversial gay wedding in London which was boycotted by close family members. Pic: Gitau wa Njenga
Clerics outraged at the gay wedding

The wedding of Mr Ngengi and Mr Gichia has outraged religious leaders here at home who described it as “unacceptable and unnatural”. Anglican Archbishop Eliud Wabukala said the union was nothing to celebrate. “The union is abnormal. As an African and a church leader, I am ashamed. We should advice others not to do the same,” he said. Similar outrage was expressed by PCEA St Andrew’s Church moderator Patrick Mungiriria in his sermon on the family under attack. More...

PNU hawks plot against Kisia at City Hall

By Mutinda Mwanzia, Oct 16 2009
Town Clerk Philip Kisia faces a new battle at City Hall with some councillors plotting to eject him. On Thursday, the councillors, mainly drawn from PNU, accused Mr Kisia of abuse of office and urged the Minister for Local Government Musalia Mudavadi to show him the door. They claimed Kisia was violating powers bestowed upon him by the Local Government Act Laws of Kenya. The councillors questioned Kisia’s rejection of a Deputy Clerk seconded to the council by the Public Service Commission More...

Philip Kisia, Nairobi Town Clerk
Philip Kisia, the Nairobi Town Clerk.
Protest as govt caves in to corrupt land cartels

By our correspondent, Oct 16 2009
The Lands Ministry has been criticised for buying grabbed land contrary to recommendations of a commission of inquiry into irregular allocations. The commission chaired by Mr Paul Ndung’u, had recommended that the repossession of all illegally acquired land. But on Thursday, Lands minister James Orengo said the government was buying grabbed land to resettle victims of the 2007 post-election violence because it lacked the mechanism to take over grabbed public land. More...

Men of God at war over church leadership in Bungoma

By our correspondents, Oct 16 2009
An election row at Bungoma ACK Diocese has taken a new twist after priests called for disciplinary action against those who disputed the results. After a meeting attended by 72 out of the 91 Diocese’s clergy on Thursday, the priests asked Archbishop Eliud Wabukala to punish those who disputed the elections. "Action should be taken against those who tarnished the Archbishop’s name and tainted the church image," said the archbishop’s commissary, Reverend Reuben Kibaba. Four archdeacons wrote to the archbishop outlining 10 grounds in which the election of George Wafula Mechumo as head of Bungoma Diocese should be nullified. In the letter, Venerables Julius Wanyonyi (Butonge arch-deaconry), Fredrick Wesonga (Bungoma), Justus Muyelele (Kabula) and William Wanyonyi (Secretary-Lwandanyi) accused Mechumo of invoking Wabukala’s name during the campaigns contrary to the church’s electoral law. They also challenged the new bishop to explain the whereabouts of millions of donor money meant for various projects. More...

Reuben Kibaba
The Reverend Reuben Kibaba (left) with new ACK Archbishop Eliud Wabukala (centre) and the Church’s Secretary General Lawrence Dena (right) and after elections in May 09. Now Rev Kibaba wants the bishops who protested elections in Bungoma that elected George Wafula Mechumo as Wabukala's replacement punished.

Kenyan student dies in Atlanta

By BMJ Muriithi, Oct 16 2009
A Kenyan student collapsed and died at Kennesaw State University in Atlanta, Georgia, US. The first-year Bachelor of Science student died on Tuesday. A family spokesperson Elizabeth Mungai, whom we spoke to from Atlanta, said Francis Kamau Gikaru, 30, had just left the university’s clinic where he had gone for allergy medication and was walking to his class when he collapsed. More...

Ministers hire lawyers ahead of Ocampo arrival

By our correspondent, Oct 16 2009
Ten prominent personalities, including ministers adversely mentioned in the 2007 post-election violence report have hired lawyers ahead of the arrival in nairobi next month of Luis Ocampo, the ICC prosecutor. They were reported to have engaged lawyers, for the sole reason they were adversely mentioned before Justice Phillip Waki Commission and a report compiled by Kenya National Commission on Human Rights. More...


Oparanya faces censure: Planning minister Wycliffe Oparanya faces a censure motion in Parliament after Sh2 billion was diverted from the Constituency Development Fund to pay census officials. More...
Play your part: Wash hands today

By our correspondent, Oct 15 2009
In Kenya, 10,000 children are expected to wash their hands simultaneously at a national event at Kilifi’s Mnarani Primary School. Hundreds of thousands of other school children countrywide will also mark the day in handwashing simulations. During last year's hugely successful inaugural Global Handwashing Day, some 230,000 children throughout Kenya joined over 120 million others in more than 70 countries in washing their hands with soap. This year’s event expects to draw even greater numbers.

Kakamega council workers storm clerk's office over pay

By our correspondent, Oct 15 2009
Over 200 Kakamega Municipal Council staff yesterday stormed the Town Clerk’s office to demand salaries. The office had been closed by councillors at the weekend. Led by Kenya Local Government Workers Union (KLGWU) branch officials, they used metal bars to smash window grills to Gabriel Kinaiya’s office. KLGWU Branch Secretary Samson Ananda accused Mayor Vincent Anjeche of failing to use proper channels while dealing with council matters. “As a union we could not entertain crude methods used in removing the Clerk from the office. We want proper channels to be followed,” he told news reporters. More...

Govt blocks Indian firm 's cement factory in Pokot

By our correspondent, Oct 15 2009
THE Government and the Pokot County Council blocked attempts by an Indian firm, Mehta Group to establish a second cement
factory in Ortum. This is after the mining and processing rights were awarded to Cemtech Group of Companies. Consequently, the Mehta Group has been told to look for alternative areas such as Koru (Nyanza), Namanga, Kitui, Muroto, Ngaeni, Mwatate, Taita hills, Kilifi, Kwale and Ngumi that have sufficient limestone deposits. Pokot County Council chairman David Moiben, yesterday faulted KVDA for licensing Mehta Group. More...

New big cheque rule catches co-ops napping

By Kenneth Ogosia, Oct 15 2009
A cash crisis has hit civil servants’ cooperative societies after the government banned cheques with a value of more than Sh1 million. All payments of more than Sh1 million are supposed to be made using a new computer software, which many government ministries did not have. Two weeks after the ban, they continued paying sacco members’ contributions through cheques, which the saccos can’t cash in the old way. More than 60,000 civil servants are affected . More...

Arnolda Angela Shiundu
Anan's hand of peace: Former UN secretary general, Kofi Anan left Kenya early this week after his trip to weed out the political bottlenecks to reform process in Kenya. Shaking Anan's hand before departure is Salome Gathu-M'Mbogori of the African Union, Panel of Eminent African Personalities while Arnolda Shiundu (2nd left) and Beatrice Karanja both of Portland, the public relations firm look on.
Clerics call for minimum reforms

By Sammy Cheboi, Oct 15 2009
Protestant religious leaders have called for minimum constitutional reforms to avoid a repeat of the 2008 poll-related violence. In a move likely to throw the law review process off balance, the National Council of Churches of Kenya (NCCK), warned of a resounding rejection of the draft constitution being prepared by the Committee of Experts. The clerics expressed their misgivings over the country’s ability to enact a new law before the 2012 elections and called for short-term changes they termed “stabilisation reforms. More...

110,000 patients at risk as HIV drugs run out

By Elizabeth Mwai, Oct 15 2009
About 110,000 patients risk missing out on Anti-retroviral (ARV) therapy come December. This is despite the Government allocating Sh300 million for emergency procurement of ARVs estimated to last barely more than three months. The Government has written to Presidential Emergency Plan For HIV/Aids Relief to request for funding to mitigate potential shortages of ARV drugs. More...

Martha Karua and Mwai Kibaki
Former allies Martha Karua, the ex justice minister and President Mwai Kibaki are now so coldblooded towards each other they walk with concealed political daggers ready to backstab each other. Karua is determined to succeed Kibaki as president in 2009 but the latter has other things and people on his mind.
No longer at ease

By Patrick Mathangani, Oct 15 2009
Former Justice Minister Martha Karua sat two rows away from President Kibaki, but the warm handshake, open display of familiarity and recognition of each other’s presence were missing. They were at a burial of Habel Nyamu, the former electoral commission of kenya chairman but even the solemnity of the occasion could not hide the layers of cold war that has played out between them ever since Karua resigned from Cabinet. In political lingo, they were a study in how badly alliances crumble and transform friends into total strangers walking around with concealed political daggers. More...

Halala Maryland chairlady bereaved

By our reporter, Oct 15 2009
Pracksides Ilamaha, the chairlady of Halala Maryland chapter has lost her father in Kenya. Ms Ilamaha was scheduled to leave for Nairobi yesterday to attend the funeral. Halala members were scheduled to meet at her place in Maryland to offer financial assistance and condolences. Those who did not attend but wish to offer their commiserations can contact her on +1 443-624-1167 or visit her in person at her addressess: 3415 Washington Avenue, Baltimore, Maryland 21244. Meanwhile in New Jersey, Karen Akutekha lost her mother last week. She was scheduled to travel to Kenya on Monday to attend the funeral. Friends and relatives can reach her on +1 973-762-2231 or send contributions by mail to her address at: 167 College Place, South Orange, New Jersey 07079.

who needs expensive shampoo
Who needs expensive shampoo when cow's urine will do for my hair
Hunger amid waste in Kenya alarming

By Peter Orengo, Oct 15 2009
Food situation in Kenya has been described as "alarming". The Global Hunger Index placed Kenya among the world’s most food deficient countries. The report by International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), Concern Worldwide and Welt Hunger Hilfe ranks countries on a 100-point scale with 0 being the best score, but Kenya had only 20.1 per cent. In ranking the country is placed 29th in the world among the countries with poor food security. More...

Ben Washika and wife
Moses Washika, his wife Rina and son Bedad after they were set free by the High Court in Kakamega. They were arrested at Muchina village, East Wanga in Mumias on December 15 2005 for alleged murder of their five daughters in ritual killing. Photo: Isaac Wale
Mumias couple charged with ritual killing of their 5 daughters set free

By Benson Amadala, Oct 14 2009
For Moses Washika and his wife Rinah Washika, December 18, 2005, is a day they will never forget in their lives. The couple had been happily preparing for the Christmas festivities at their church, at Ekero market near Mumias Town, when news of the killings of their five daughters struck them like a bolt of lighting. It was a double jolt on their lives after they were charged with the murder of their children! But speaking after their acquittal, the couple said they had forgiven those who accused them of murdering their five daughters in a suspected ritual killing. The couple were set free by a court for lack of evidence. . More...

Vice chancellor quits as Kiriri university totters on the brink of collapse

By our correspondents, Oct 14 2009
Kiriri Women’s University of Science and Technology is facing closure for failing to meet its commitments and conform to standards set by the commission of higher education. The university, which was granted a Letter of Interim Authority in 2002, has grossly inadequate learning facilities. We have reliably learnt that the Vice-Chancellor Monica Naliaka Mweseli has resigned citing poor management and is scheduled to leave office next month. Investigations by ‘Education’ reveal that the Commission for Higher Education (CHE) is considering closing some private universities that have stagnated since they were awarded Letters of Interim Administration. More...

Kiriri University
Kiriri University of Science & Technology at Kahawa which is facing closure for not conforming to standards set by Commission for Higher Education.

Ocampo coming next month: International Criminal Court chief prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo will arrive in Nairobi early next month to meet President Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga over the planned trial of key post-election violence suspects. More...
Father charged with impregnating daughter

By our correspondent, Oct 14 2009
A father has been arraigned in a Bomet court for defiling and impregnating his 15-year-old daughter.Wilson Tele committed the offences at Chepkosa, Bomet Central Division on January 22.Tele denied the charge before Principal Magistrate Timothy Okello. The man, who has been married for 17 years was bonded until December 29. More...


Shock of teenage sex

Girls as young as 12 are selling their bodies for petty things such as mobile phone airtime, chips and even sanitary pads. More...

Maize prices drop by 30% in Western

By Joel Okwayo, Oct 14 2009
Maize prices in Western Province have dropped by over 30 per cent.A two-kilogramme tin of maize in the region is selling at Sh60 down from Sh90 mid this year. "Prices had even dropped to as low as Sh50 per two-kilogramme tin last month, before changing to Sh60 as we entered October," said a trader in Kakamega town. But the Government has cautioned residents against selling their harvested produce to middlemen. Last month, seven DCs and Ministry of Agriculture officials raised an alarm over the rate at which the farmers were disposing of their maize to middlemen. More...


Gideon Moi
Gideon Moi: I am an elephant like my father and I want to be president like him.

Makerere bosses sacked: FACULTY dean of Makerere University and four other top officials have been asked to resign over alleged mismanagement of funds. More...

Moi schemes return to State House

Daniel Nzia, Oct 14 2009
Kanu vice-chairman Gideon Moi has hinted he will vie for president in 2012. Gideon, who is seeking to challenge Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta for Kanu’s leadership when elections are held in January next year, says he is up to the task. "My eyes are set on State House. I am not a coward and will fear nothing in that direction," said Gideon. The former Baringo Central MP described his father, former President Moi, as an elephant’ saying he, too, was like him and was ready to fit in his shoes. More...


Wako ordered to publish Anglo Leasing report in a fortnight

By David Ochami, Oct 14 2009
Parliament’s Legal Affairs Committee wants the Attorney General and Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission to publish a progress report on their joint investigation of Anglo-Leasing corruption cases in two weeks. The two offices have been asked to explain their joint inability to conclude and prosecute cases associated with the long running investigations. More...

Magistrate sues over illegal retirement five years ago

By Judy Ogutu,Oct 13 2009
A magistrate who was retired following a countrywide strike five years ago is seeking to be reinstated. Ms Joyce Manyasi was a Chief Magistrate in Machakos when the Judiciary decided to send her on early retirement in June 2005. On Monday, she told High Court judges, Jean Gacheche and Leonard Njagi the decision to retire her was arbitrary, illegal and unreasonable because the rules of natural justice, which require that she be given a hearing, were not followed. More...


Free standards: The venerable London Evening Standard newspaper is now free after 180 years. New Russian owner wants to plug falling sales.More
Dalmas Otieno
Minister for Public Service, Dalmas Otieno has stirred the hornet's nest by demanding that all public sector jobs reflect the face of Kenya.
Govt orders ethnic balance in public sector jobs

By Peter Leftie, Oct 13 2009
The government has ordered heads of public institutions to uphold ethnic balance when recruiting public servants. Prime Minister Raila Odinga warned that the government would no longer tolerate a trend where tribalism and nepotism is allowed to influence appointments in the civil service. “We do not want a situation where all officers from the top to the bottom come from one tribe,” said Public Service Minister Dalmas Otieno who introduced the subject during the launch of the Public Service Week at the Kenyatta International Conference Centre (KICC) on Tuesday. More...

Zimbabwe HIV women find new cure in playing football

By our correspondent, Oct 13 2009
Women's football is being used in Zimbabwe to confront the stigma associated with HIV and Aids. A total of 16 women's teams now take part in competitions for players who have openly declared that they are HIV positive. But despite the courage of the women involved, there has been much resistance."I'd like the whole world to know about my status, so that others can be helped," goalkeeper Thandiwe Richard told BBC Sport. "But some people in our community say, 'how can these people who are dying play football'. "But football has helped my fitness." More

Otieno Kajwang'
Immigration minister, Otieno Kajwang'
Politician wins against deportation orders

By our correspondent, Oct 13 2009
A politician who lost a parliamentary bid in the 2007 General Election has successfully argued for the nullification of a deportation order minister Otieno Kajwang’ issued against him last year. Mr Mohamud Sirat, who vied for the Wajir South parliamentary seat, convinced the High Court in Nairobi that the deportation order by the Immigration minister was unlawful. The minister declared Mr Sirat a prohibited immigrant allegedly becaue he held an Australian pasport. More...

Minister bans food aid in Meru

By Patrick Muriungi, Oct 13 2009
Energy Minister Kiraitu Murungi has banned the distribution of relief food in his constituency. Addressing fish farmers at Kaguru Farmers Training Centre during the launch of a fish-farming project, Kiraitu observed that continued delivery of food aid encouraged laziness and nurtured a culture of dependency. Kiraitu was reacting to local acting DC John Kirui’s sentiments that South Imenti had received bags of relief maize and beans and other foodstuff for distribution to the region’s poor. "I blocked delivery of food aid in my constituency more that three years ago to encourage people to work and the directive still stands," he said. More...

kiraitu muriungi
Energy minister Kiraitu Muriungi: Food aid encourages laziness.
Kisumu council hasn't paid wage arrears for 7 years

By Kepher Otieno, Oct 13 2009
Kisumu Municipal Council workers staged a sit-in to demand more than Sh60 million in salary arrears. The more than 500 employees reported to work but refused to serve the public, paralysing the council activities. They assembled outside the Town Hall where Union officials addressed them and resolved not to work until they are paid the arrears. Addressing the workers, Kenya Local Government Workers’ Union Kisumu Branch Secretary Rashid Ondu said the arrears dated back to 2002. More...

Mumias sugar is tasteless for Western farmers

By our correspondents, Oct 12 2009
Sugarcane farming has failed to reduce poverty in Western Province, Ministers Wycliffe Oparanya and Paul Otuoma have said. Mr Oparanya of Planning and Dr Otuoma of Fisheries said it was regrettable farmers only take home less than 30 per cent of the returns after investing in the sector. Mumias Sugar Company (MSC) released statistics indicating farmers earn a mere Sh3 billion from the sugar industry of the Sh14 billion generated annually. MSC Managing Director Evans Kidero said factors such as taxation, high cost of farm inputs, low crushing capacities and land fragmentation reduce farmers’ returns from the crop. Dr Kidero told participants at the just concluded Western Provincial Investment Economic Conference in Kakamega, the Sugar Act should be reviewed to have millers and farmers play their roles effectively and avoid blaming each other. More...


Njonjo's daughter weds Volker: It was a rare wedding when the daughter of former Attorney-General Charles Njonjo walked down the aisle during a closed-door ceremony at a Nairobi church on Saturday evening. The exchange of vows between Ms Wairimu Njonjo and Mr Bassen Volker held at the All Saints’ Cathedral was an exclusively family affair. Only about 30 people were ushered into the church compound for the private wedding. More...
Wairimu Njonjo marries Volker Bassen
Wairimu Njonjo and Volker Bassen
Paul Otuoma, Minister for Fisheries
Fisheries Minister, Paul Otuoma (above) and Planning and Development Minister, Wycliffe Oparanya (below) said sugar farming has perpetuated poverty rather than reduce it in Western.
Wycliffe Oparanya

Boyzone singer dead: Friends, fans and stars have paid tribute to Boyzone singer Stephen Gately, who has died suddenly at the age of 33 while on holiday in Majorca. More...

Obama's peace award divides web

News that U.S. President Barack Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize has been as polarizing as his embattled healthcare reform plans. Minutes after the news broke, social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook were flooded with comments. More...

Bloated coalition cabinet swallows up money for projects

By Peter Leftie, Oct 12 2009
Public projects in Kenya are running behind because of delayed release of billions of shillings set aside in the Budget. The affected projects are in education, labour, health, planning and national development, according to Daily Nation investigations. Also affected is the free primary education programme, the Kazi kwa Vijana (Jobs for Youth) initiative, projects under the Constituency Development Fund and the recently launched economic stimulus package, which may not take off at all, according to Planning minister Wycliffe Oparanya. More...


In Memory of music maestro Franco - 30 yrs on

Franco Luambo Luanzo Makiadi

By our correspondents, Oct 12 2009
On Monday, the Democratic Republic of Congo pays homage to one of its greatest sons, the grandmaster of Lingala music, Franco. The latest reports say there have been suggestions made through his family and the Luambo Foundation to have his remains perhaps one day exhumed from the Gombe cemetery in Kinshasa and buried in Sona-Bota, Lower Congo region, his birthplace. More...


Fresh clues in Julie Ward case

By our correspondent, Oct 12 2009
Fresh evidence has sparked a new inquiry into the murder of British tourist Julie Ward in a Kenyan game park 21 years ago. Scotland Yard officers have visited Nairobi to discuss the case, it was confirmed yesterday. DNA evidence is to be re-evaluated with the aid of advances in forensic science. More...

Shs75m school equipment cash looted

By our correspondent, Oct 12 2009
A parastatal under the Ministry of Education illegally paid out Sh75 million for science equipment that was never delivered, The Standard can reveal. Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (KACC) is investigating the fraud at the Schools Equipment Production Unit (Sepu), a unit charged with designing and producing science equipment for schools countrywide. Details in our possession indicate that the payment for the single-sourced contract was rushed in total disregard of the procurement procedures. Sepu Managing Director Benson Anyona confirmed the issue is being investigated by KACC but declined to give further details. More...


Shock as 5,000 admitted students fail to turn up at Makerere

By Francis Kagolo, Oct 12 2009
About 5,000 students, out of the 13,455 admitted to Makerere University on private sponsorship this academic year, have not turned up for registration. Another 323 government-sponsored students have also not registered after the deadline for the exercise passed on September 28. Leaders of the Makerere University Concerned Students Association, a students’ rights advocacy group, attributed the low turn up to the tight deadline and strict registration policies. For a private student to be eligible for registration, he has to pay all functional fees (about sh500,000) and full tuition, according to a recent policy passed by the university council. More...

Evans Kidero
Evans Kidero, Mumias Sugar MD: Sugar Act to blame for sugar farmers' poverty in Western.

Raila denies ministers will be arrested story

Prime Minister Raila Odinga has accused a section of the media of being biased and antagonistic. The PM clarified on Saturday that at no time during his tour of Kondele in Kisumu did he say the Government would hand over suspects of the post-election violence to the International Criminal Court. More...

Mumias MD blames Sugar Act for farmer's poverty

By our correspondent, Oct 12 2009
Mumias Sugar Managing Director, Dr Evans Kidero told participants at the just concluded Western Provincial Investment Economic Conference in Kakamega, the Sugar Act should be reviewed to have millers and farmers play their roles effectively and avoid blaming each other. He said MSC would venture into power, ethanol and water production to maximise profits. He said proposals to venture into other products was part of strategies to ensure the sector remains active after the expiry of the four year Comesa safeguard period. Oparanya and Otuoma said they would lobby the Cabinet to speed up a review of the Act to have farmers benefit from molasses, power and other cane products. "Electricity and molasses produced by the company does not benefit farmers because the Act did not include them as some of the products to be shared between farmers and the miller," said Oparanya. More...

Rights activist insists militias are arming themselves for 2012

By our correspondents, Oct 10 2009
Two human rights activists were arrested briefly on Friday over claims that militias in the Rift Valley were rearming ahead of the 2012 elections. The executive director of the Eldoret-based Centre for Human Rights and Democracy, Mr Ken Wafula, and the head of the Centre Against Torture, Mr David Koros, were later released after being questioned. Mr Wafula was questioned by the Eldoret District CID boss, Mr Simon Wabwire. The two were interrogated for about two hours before they were released. Speaking to the Saturday Nation after they were released, Mr Wafula said he stood by the reports, maintaining that Rift Valley residents were arming themselves with guns ahead of the 2012 General Election. More...

Raila Odinga
Raila Odinga in Kisumu yesterday: The government will arrest ministers and handed over to Ocampo for trial at the Hague. ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo was expected to formally request a meeting with Mr Odinga and President Kibaki to discuss the way forward.
Suspect ministers to be arrested and handed over to Ocampo - Raila

By our correspondents, Oct 10 2009
Prime Minister Raila Odinga has given the strongest commitment yet that the Kenyan Government will arrest and hand over suspects of the post-election violence to the International Criminal Court. Mr Odinga said those indicted will be arrested and handed over to the ICC prosecutors. It is thought that the suspects include some prominent Cabinet ministers. “We are ready to arrest and hand over suspects to be taken to the Hague for prosecution,” he said in Kisumu. More...

Obama wins Nobel Peace Prize

By our correspondent, Oct 10 2009
President Obama said Friday that he was "surprised and deeply humbled" by the decision of the Norwegian Nobel Committee to award him the 2009 Nobel Peace Prize. The committee said it honored Obama for his "extraordinary efforts to strengthen international diplomacy and cooperation between peoples." Obama said he viewed the decision less as a recognition of his own accomplishments and more as "a call to action." The decision appeared to catch most observers by surprise. Nominations for the prize had to be postmarked by February 1, only 12 days after Obama took office. The committee sent out its solicitation for nominations last September, two months before Obama was elected president. Obama had not been mentioned as among front-runners for the prize, and the roomful of reporters gasped when Thorbjorn Jagland, chairman of the Nobel committee, announced that the president was the winner. More...


From slavery to White House: New York Times reports the fascinating story of Michelle Obama's slave heritage back to a 6-year-old slave girl named Melvinia in pre-Civil War South Carolina. A genealogist working with The New York Times has traced Michelle's family tree back five generations to a 6-year-old slave girl named Melvinia who was valued at $475. More...
Michelle Obama and Barack Obama
The man and his wife: Mr & Mrs Obama
Webuye paper mills to be sold to investors from Nyanza - MP

By our correspondents, Oct 10 2009
Kimilili MP David Eseli Simiyu welcomed the Western Province Investment Conference which concluded in Kakamega yesterday but lamented that one of the key firms in the region, Mumias Sugar Company, is controlled by individuals from outside the region after local farmers sold their shares. He alleged that plans are under way to sell the troubled Pan Paper Mills to individuals from Nyanza Province. Deputy Prime Minister Musalia Mudavadi challenged residents not to fear seeking loans from financial institutions to set up or boost existing investments. "Western has a lot of investment potential, which locals need to fully exploit," said Mudavadi. More...

Dr David Eseli Simiyu
Kimilili MP, David Eseli Simiyu: Who owns industry in Western?
Who attended the Western economic conference?

By our correspondents, Oct 10 2009
The conference brought together participants from Kenya Investment Authority, Lake Basin Development Authority (LBDA) and major companies, which included Mumias Sugar Company and Equity Bank. Others were provincial administrators, academicians, senior civil servants, civic leaders, civil society groups, religious leaders, NGOs and trade unionists. Cabinet ministers Wycliffe Oparanya (Planning), Soita Shitanda (Housing), Paul Otuoma (Fisheries), Attorney General Amos Wako, Assistant ministers George Khaniri, Alfred Khangati and Bifwoli Wakoli were also present. Others were MPs Justus Kizito, Wilbur Otichillo, Ben Washiali, David Were, Yusuf Chanzu, Evans Akula, Eseli and Alfred Sambu.

Raila tells Luhyas to stop begging and seek loans for investments instead

By our correspondents, Oct 10 2009
Prime Minister Raila Odinga has said negative attitude towards investment is a major contributor to Western Province’s high poverty index. Speaking during a conference to chart the economic future of the province, Raila said most residents do not have an entrepreneurial spirit. He said residents have formed a habit on depending on others for survival yet they are capable of sustaining themselves. "People in this region should stop telling people to give them handouts and instead ask them to lend them," he added. Speaking at the Western Province Investment Conference in Kakamega, on Friday, the PM said the region is blessed with adequate rainfall and fertile soil yet it ranks among the poorest provinces. More...

Luanda, Kenya
Petty traders of Luanda with their produce on display.
Parties warn Ligale to listen to them or they disrupt his meetings

By Gakuu Mathenge, Oct 10 2009
As the Independent Interim Boundaries Review Commission (IIBRC) readies itself for provincial visits starting next week, political parties have resolved to gate-crash its programme to force the team to yield to their demands. The parties accuse the commission of not engaging them in the process. They say they waited in vain for the Andrew Ligale-led team to meet them. The parties are taking issue with the Committee of Experts on alleged failure to consult widely on the election system to adopt before deciding on the system of government. More...

Andrew Ligale
Andrew Ligale: Chairman Independent Interim Review Commission.
Lords of deception defraud patients

By Kenfrey Kiberenge, Oct 10 2009
They claim to heal all sorts of terminal and incurable illnesses, ranging from HIV/Aids to cancer. The treatment, they say, is faultless. And for this reason, they are the most sought-after people by terminal patients. In some cases, patients have been picked from hospital beds to get this healing that is considered "specialised and advanced". Welcome to the world of crooked herbalists and televangelists. More...

Sande Mukhwana
Sande Mukhwana cannot eat solid foods. He is on food supplements and liquids but these cost money. He wants to travel back to Kenya but he needs your help. Please act.

If you can help with whatever amount please contact:

Neccy Kikaya
Contact:  necessity7777@hotmail.com
Telephone: +44 (0) 7949 115 470

Appeal for help: Sande Mukhwana

By Neccy Kikaya, Oct 9 2009
Sande Mukhwana has personally phoned me and is a man in agony.  He approached me as a contact person in the current “Circle of Support”.  I encourage you too to join this Circle of Support. Sande Mukhwana may not be known to you but he is a Kenyan who has been living in the UK for a short time and is ailing at the moment.  He desperately needs assistance from you and I, so that he may return home (Kenya) permanently.   Those in Abeingo Community Network (ACN), may have noticed Sande helping mostly with “Choma Nyama on the BBQ” during these events.

He acknowledges that some assistance has been so far accorded to him in the way of an Air-Ticket to enable him take a flight back home to Nairobi.  Hopefully, he should be travelling next week.  Sande expressed his appreciation and thanked the kindness of those who fundraised and contributed towards obtaining the air-fare.  You are thanked (on his behalf) for contributing.

However, Sande is convinced, trusts and hopes, that I can help him organize some little money to assist him towards school fees for his eldest child.  Most of you, like me, may consider this request (fees) unsustainable in the long run.  Which is why I am writing this note.  Considering his current situation, one would take it that it is his only diplomatic request for feeding assistance.  Sande cannot eat solid foods.  He is on food supplements and liquids but it costs money.  Perhaps such a little contribution request may sustain him as he lands in Kenya and finds his feet once more.  Your humble gesture towards the aforesaid, will enable me respond. If you feel obliged to help him on food (feeding), this or anyway possible, then please contact me.

My details are: Neccy Kikaya, Telephone +44 (0) 7949 115 470 | Email: necessity7777@hotmail.com

Luhya leaders wake up, talk economics

By Cosmas Butunyi, Oct 9 2009
An ambitious plan to develop Western Province was launched on Thursday with Prime Minister Raila Odinga inviting investors to exploit agriculture, mining and tourism opportunities. Mr Odinga said the province enjoyed good climate and had the human resources to boost economic development. “These factors should attract and drive investment in agriculture and horticulture, manufacturing and industry, education and training,” he told an investment conference in Kakamega Town. More...

Alfred Sambu
Prime Minister Mr Raila Odinga shakes hands with Luhya leaders on arrival at Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology in Kakamega where he officially opened the Western Province Investment Conference. The conference comes against a backdrop of lulled industrial activity in the province folowing the collapse of Pan Paper Mills of Webuye which Mr Odinga promised to re open with local, government and international partnerships. Photo: Isaac Wale
Wetangula locks horns with ministries over visa fees

By Alex Ndegwa, Oct 9 2009
Three ministries are locked in a row over reduction of tourism visa fees. Foreign Affairs Minister Moses Wetangula said his ministry was not consulted on the decision. Yesterday, Mr Wetangula told the Parliamentary Committee on Defence and Foreign Affairs that a study indicated the move had not translated into increased number of tourists. The Government earlier in the year announced the reduction of the cost of tourist visas from $50 (Sh4,000) to $25 (Sh2,000). More...


Mungiki terror gang posing as genuine matatu crews

There is a thin line between members of the Mungiki sect and genuine matatu crews. And this is hurting efforts by police officers to rid the transport sector of the outlawed movement that extorts from matatus in the guise of offering protection. The Nation has learnt that the sect’s members are now posing as matatu crews. More...

Bradley Birkenfield
Key Anglo Leasing suspect wants to spill the beans

A key suspect in the multi-billion-shilling Anglo Leasing scandal is finally willing to spill the beans. Attorney General Amos Wako confirmed that Mr Bradley Birkenfeld, a 43-year-old American banker (above) believed to have signed one of the 18 Anglo Leasing contracts, had contacted him indicating his willingness to volunteer information that could blow the scandal wide open. “He recently got in touch with me asking that we (the government) put in a formal request for assistance so he could talk to us, which I did immediately,” Mr Wako said on Thursday. More...

Rebellion feared as youth program grinds to a halt

By our correspondents, Oct 9 2009
Kazi Kwa Vijana (KKV) projects across the country have ground to a halt following the drying up of funds from Treasury. Yesterday, Prime Minister Raila Odinga raised the alarm claiming the project, which is co-ordinated by his office, has been "sabotaged". KKV was meant to create employment for more than 300,000 young people countrywide. Raila said the coalition risked a rebellion from the youth, who expected gainful employment through the project. "This is the kind of sabotage that can spark a rebellion against the Government because KKV had become a lifeline for thousands of youths it employed," he said. More...


More queries over arms militias: Mr Kofi Annan on Wednesday questioned top government officials about the rearming of militias ahead of Kenya's 2012 election. This follows reports in the international media of gun buying in the Rift Valley as communities allegedly prepare for a confrontation in 2012. More...
Trans Nzoia man stuns court by demanding life sentence

By Titus Too, Oct 9 2009
Those who committed heinous acts during last year’s post-election chaos are probably having endless nightmares. Yesterday, a man stunned a court by demanding life imprisonment, claiming he torched houses when Kenya went to the brink of chaos. The man, who has been charged with being drunk and disorderly, also claimed Mungiki gangs were after him because of his involvement. Mr Clement Wafula claimed police had refused to lock him up even after presenting himself at two stations. A packed court was thrown into confusion and disbelief as the man sought the heavy sentence despite undergoing two mental tests. He claimed he presented himself to Eldoret Police Station, but was chased away and again at Kapsabet Police Station where he was later arrested for being drunk and disorderly. More...

Sam Ongeri, Kenya's Education Minister
Prof Sam Ongeri, the education minister was given a beach plot in Kilifi by Moi. It was then sold to an Italian company after the ministry of lands issued another title deed on the same land in an increasing trend of corruption.
Ongeri case gives a glimpse on how Moi dished public land to the undeserving

By Paul Gitau, Oct 9 2009
A minister has sued the Ministry of Lands for issuing a second title deed on his plot. Education Minister Sam Ongeri has sued the ministry and a private company over a beach plot he says was allocated to him in 1994. Prof Ongeri alleges the Registrar of Lands fraudulently issued a second title deed to an Italian-owned company called Greenbay Holding. Yesterday, Ongeri testified before Malindi Resident Judge Hellen Omondi, and showed a letter he got from former President Moi authorising the land be allocated to him. He spent more than one hour testifying how he was allocated the 0.8247 hectares beach plot in Kilifi. More...

Luhya leaders converge in Kakamega for economic forum

By our correspondents, Oct 8 2009
Twenty-eight MPs and professionals converge in Kakamega today to chart the economic future of Western Province. Prime Minister Raila Odinga will preside over the opening of the Western Province Investment Conference, whose theme is ‘Unlocking the Investment Potential in Western Province’, at Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology. Participants are to reflect on why the region has performed poorly in development despite its rich agricultural potential and come up with a blueprint to help turn the region around. All the MPs from the province are expected to attend the conference. Also roped in are Cabinet ministers Noah Wekesa (Kwanza, PNU), Fred Gumo (Westlands, ODM) and Saboti MP Eugene Wamalwa (PNU). Equity Bank, Kenya Investment Authority, Lake Basin Development Authority, Mumias Sugar Company, Kenya Commercial Bank and Nakumatt Supermarkets are the sponsors of the two-day event. More...

Kakamega
All roads lead to Eshieywe as Kakamega is fondly known. It is here that for the first time all Luhya leaders assemble today to discuss the most important issue of all time - how to get rid of poverty that has relegated Western Province to the backwaters of economic development despite the area being rich in agricultural resources.
Court jails University chancellor: A Nairobi court has ordered Police Commissioner to arrest Kenyatta University Vice Chancellor and Council Chairman and jail them for twomonths. More...
Model village triples maize yield

By Mangoa Mosota, Oct 8 09
The Sauri Millennium Village Project in Siaya District has increased maize production threefold since its inception, three years ago. A report on the achievement of the project, in efforts to meet the eight Millennium Development Goals, shows the yield of the crop tripled from eight bags an acre to 24. Project Co-ordinator Patrick Mutuo said yesterday there are close to 13,000 farmers in clusters of 3,000 engaged in production in diverse high value crops. He said the project had achieved four of the eight MDGs. More...

House not to blame for stalled reforms, Marende tells Annan

By Alex Ndegwa, Oct 8 2009
Parliament is not to blame for the slow pace of reforms, House Speaker Kenneth Marende has said. Mr Marende told Dr Kofi Annan "Parliament had played its part and that the rest were the roles of the other arms of Government". He told the former UN Secretary-General political parties must build consensus to speedily implement reforms. The Executive has blamed Parliament, which shot down a Bill on Special Tribunal in February, for blocking efforts to try suspects locally. More...

Kenneth Marende and Kofi Annan
It wasn't me: House Speaker Kenneth Marende and former UN secretary general Kofi Annan in Nairobi yesterday. Marende told Annan House has done its part on reforms. Photo: Standard
Govt dismisses BBC arms story

By our correspondent, Oct 8 09
The Government and religious leaders have dismissed claims by the BBC that rival ethnic groups are rearming in readiness for chaos in 2012. Internal Security Minister George Saitoti said there is no evidence to back the claims. More...

Rush for boreholes could sink Nairobi - experts

By Kibiwott Koross, Oct 8 2009
Experts are warning against the mass sinking of boreholes in Nairobi to deal with water shortage. The stability of some buildings in the metropolitan area could be compromised if drilling is not controlled, say hydrogeologists. There are also concerns about the safety of borehole water, according to a recent World Bank report titled The Role of Ground Water in the Water-Supply of Greater Nairobi. The report says there is the possibility of the ground caving in, putting buildings at risk of collapsing and the aquifers could also dry up. More...

Nairobi city
Aerial view of Nairobi. Shortage of water has led to increased sinking of boreholes. Now experts are warning the city itself could sink.

Khalwale to take part in US radio debate

By our correspondent, Oct 8 2009
Three MPs are to take part in a debate at a radio station in United States on Saturday. They are former Justice minister and Gichugu MP Martha Karua, Konoin’s Dr Julius Kones and his Ikolomani counterpart Dr Boni Khalwale. Speaking by phone, Dr Kones said they were invited to tackle issues affecting the country. They will answer questions from Kenyans in the diaspora on constitutional review, war on corruption and reforms. More...

SA man weds four brides at once

By Pumza Pihlani, oct 8 2009
South African businessman Milton Mbele broke all the traditional rules of a polygamous wedding when he recently married four women on the same day. The four brides dressed in flowing white gowns walked down the aisle together, before saying "We do" to the 44-year-old groom. Mr Mbele says he didn't marry them purely for the spectacle but also because it made financial sense. "I don't know how much four different weddings would have cost me but I know doing it all at once saved money," he explains. More...

South African wedding, Milton Mbele
All four are brides and they are mine, boasts Milton Mbele of South Africa
UK edges US in world university leagues

By our correspondents, Oct 8 2009
A table of leading world universities shows a fall in the number of North American universities in the top 100 from 42 in 2008 to 36 in 2009. The sixth Times Higher Education table is based on a survey of academics and graduate employers worldwide. There are 39 European universities in the top 100, up from 36. The number of Asian universities rose from 14 to 16. Harvard is still top, while Cambridge moves up from third to second place. Oxford slips from fourth to fifth rank. The University of Tokyo, at 22nd, is the highest ranked Asian university. More...

TOP 10 UNIVERSITIES 2009

  • Harvard University
  • Cambridge University
  • Yale University
  • University College London
  • Imperial College London*
  • Oxford University
  • University of Chicago
  • Princeton University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • California Institute of Technology
  • Columbia University
    * = joint place
Muthaura blasts Wetangula's ministry over job contracts

By our correspondents, Oct 8 2009
Head of Public Service Francis Muthaura yesterday launched a scathing attack against the ministry of Foreign Affairs, accusing it of playing games with the signing of performance contracts.Muthaura said he was embarrassed by the manner in which the ministry was taking the contracting issue.He said the ministry was non committal on the issue and its commitment to service delivery was therefore uestionable.Without mentioning specific names, Muthaura said the issue was derailing the spirit in which the Government was undertaking quality service delivery. More...

Kalenjin, Kikuyu start arming themselves in readiness for '2012 violence'

By our correspondent, Oct 7 2009
Rival ethnic groups in Kenya who fought after the 2007 election are rearming in readiness for violence at the 2012 poll, a BBC investigation has found. It is feared villagers in Rift Valley province are moving from traditional weapons such as spears to machine guns. The BBC's Network Africa programme discovered arms dealers selling sophisticated weaponry in the Rift Valley - an area hard-hit by ethnic violence in early 2008. Members of the Kalenjin community and their rivals, the Kikuyu - the country's dominant ethnic group - both said they were arming to protect themselves. "We bought the guns because we hear the Kikuyu have also bought guns," said a Kalenjin man who declined to be named. More...

Kalenjin violence
Sad chapter in Kenya's history as tribe turned against tribe following disputed presidential elections in which Kibaki was declared 'winner'
Uganda govt attacks Catholic Church

By Angelo Izama, Oct 7 2009
Uganda’s law drafting body, the Law Reform Commission yesterday said, while it was aware of the concerns of the Catholic Church on divorce and separate acquisition of property, being a Catholic does not take away the rights of individuals in a marriage. “Firstly is breakdown of marriages not happening among Catholics?” the commission asks in a statement released at a press conference yesterday attended by its head Prof. James Kakooza. The commission is looking at divorce and distribution of property. More...

Canadian English
Dump prosecutor This signage was spotted at Clareview shopping mall in Edmonton Canada by our hawk-eyed photographer. If you are going to prosecute fly tippers, you won't win if you hired this PROSUCUTOR. Damn...
Teso form association, push for unity worldwide

By Moses Odongo, Oct 7 2009
Iteso living in Kampala have formed an association to help develop their region. The Iteso Development Forum was formed on September 26, at the UMA conference hall in Lugogo. It will incorporate the smaller Iteso associations already in place. A renowned surgeon, Professor Francis Omaswa, the brain behind the association, said problems affecting the region can be solved if Iteso scattered around the world unite. More...

Headmaster arrested for defiling pupils

By Karanja Njoroge, Oct 7 2009
A primary school headmaster accused by parents of having affairs with his pupils has been arrested. Police arrested the headmaster of Cheptoroi Primary School in Njoro on Monday after he went to Njoro Police Station to enquire about the incident. Last week, 200 irate parents, who stormed the school, forced the teacher to flee into a nearby maize plantation to escape the wrath of the parents baying for his blood. The furious parents alleged that he was having sexual affairs with girls at the school. More...

Joseph Muchemi
Recalled London envoy Joseph Muchemi is yet to return to Kenya one month later. Mr Muchemi is a confidant of President Kibaki and was a retired civil servant at the time he was named to the London post.
Recalled London diplomat fails to return home

By Henry Owuor, Oct 7 2009
A long-serving diplomat has failed to return home more than a month after he was recalled. The Nation first reported of Mr Joseph Muchemi’s recall as Kenya’s High Commissioner in London on September 3. Foreign Affairs permanent secretary Thuita Mwangi said then that Mr Muchemi had completed his tour of duty. At the time, Mr Mwangi said, the Charge de Affaires in London, Mr Addison Chebukaka, was acting as the High Commissioner. Mr Muchemi, who was appointed to the key London post in 2003, has served well beyond the limit of 48 months in one station. More...

Mumias Sugar dives into water production

By James Anyanzwa, Oct 7 2009
Mumias Sugar Company (MSC) will start producing bottled water and ethanol to prop up its income. The latest move is part of the company’s growth and diversification plan ahead of the expiry of Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (Comesa) safeguard measures in 2012. The Western Kenya based sugar miller has unveiled plans to set up a $35 million (Sh2.6 billion) ethanol plant to produce an approximated 25 million litres of extra neutral spirits annually. Mr Evans Kidero, the company’s chief executive says the project, which is expected to kick off early next year, will be financed both through equity and debt. More...

Richard Onyonka
Assistant Minister for Foreign Affairs Richard Onyonka has earned the wrath of his party (People's Democratic Party) for his dalliance with ODM. The party boss says Onyonka is promoting the aims of a rival party.
Party wants to kick out unfaithful MP

By Robert Nyasato, Oct 7 2009
Foreign Affairs Assistant Minister Richard Onyonka is locked in a row with the party that sponsored him to Parliament. The People’s Democratic Party (PDP) wants to withdraw sponsorship for the Assistant minister because he had allegedly breached its constitution by flirting with ODM, contrary to the party’s constitution. In a letter to the Kitutu Chache MP, PDP has notified him that he risked losing his seat as a result. National Chairman Stephen Nyarangi Osomu said the party’s constitution barred Onyonka - its only MP - from subscribing or promoting activities of another political party. More...

Public tender winners to be published every month - Raila

By Peter Leftie, Oct 6 2009
Prime Minister Raila Odinga has warned public servants who practice corruption or tribalism that they face the sack. In a series of measures aimed at ensuring the government improves service delivery to the public, Mr Odinga announced that henceforth, the performance of civil servants will be evaluated by external experts and not public institutions to ensure no favouritism takes place. All public tenders will also be made public on a monthly basis, complete with details of tender sums, winners of tenders and details of delayed projects, including the names of contractors and cost over-runs, the PM directed. More...

African migrants risk all to live UK dream

By Paul Kenyon, Oct 6 2009
After several more failed attempts, Alex made it across the Mediterranean to Italy, the nearest European soil. But Italy was not what he was aiming for. Alex smuggled himself in trucks and trains, travelling further northwards until he arrived at Calais, just 34km from the UK. He could have claimed political asylum in France, but he resisted. Despite the views of some commentators in this country, his motivation was not the UK's benefit system. More...

Google targeted in email scam

By Jonathan Fildes, Oct 6 2009
Google has confirmed to BBC News that its e-mail system - Gmail - has been targeted as part of an "industry-wide phishing scheme". The search giant said that it had taken immediate action to safeguard the affected accounts. Phishing involves using fake websites to lure people into revealing data such as bank account details or login names. BBC News has seen two lists that detail more than 30,000 names and passwords that have been posted online. "We recently became aware of an industry-wide phishing scheme through which hackers gained user credentials for web-based mail accounts including Gmail accounts," said a Google spokesperson. More...

For once a beauty with brains wins Miss Kenya 2009 beauty pageant

By Philip Mwaniki, Oct 6 2009
Twenty-year-old Fiona Konchella emerged as Kenya’s top model on Saturday night, after hotly contested Miss World Kenya finals. Described by the judges as being very intelligent and having the best smile and a powerful and convincing speech, Miss Konchella beat 16 other hopefuls to grab a chance to represent Kenya at the Miss World Finals in Johannesburg South Africa in December. She also won a brand new Toyota Vitz. “I think one of the things that won me the crown was my confidence,” she says the second year bachelor of commerce student at teh University of Nairobi.The event was sponsored by Ashleys Beauty Academy, Some of the previous winners of the Miss World Kenya are Juliet Achieng who won in 2004, Cecilia Mwangi 2005, Shamila Kiptoo 2007 and Ruth Kinuthia who won it last year. More...

Stella Konchella, Miss Kenya 2009
Miss Kenya 2009 Fiona Konchella (Centre), second runners up Susan Kamau (Left) and first runners up Tabitha Wachiuri during Miss World Kenya 2009 beauty pageant in Nairobi on Saturday. Photo: Dennis Okeyo
Annan questions Kibaki about tribal appointments

By our correspondents, Oct 6 2009
Former UN secretary general Kofi Annan questioned President Kibaki on the public perception that he was favouring one community in appointments and not consulting Raila or his party, according to independent sources privvy to the closed door meeting between Mr Annan and Kenya's coalition partners, Kibaki and Raila Odinga. "The surprise issue Annan raised, and which he said was as important as the reforms is appointments to public office. Annan said anger would continue to build as long as appointments seemed to favour just one community. He said that is the perception at the moment,’’ said a source. "He said a key contributor to the 2008 violence was a perception among Kenyans that this was a Government of one community and nothing has been done to change that perception.’’ More...

Horse riding
Ouch...Whatever you do DON'T do this at home. Even for professional jockeys this vertical fall must have been ouch for both man and beast. Have a fun day.
Marende elected president

By martin Mutua, Oct 6 2009
National Assembly Speaker Kenneth Marende has been elected President of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA). Mr Marende was elected at the conference in Arusha, Tanzania, on Monday. At the same time, Kenya has been chosen to host the 56th CPA meeting next year. National Assembly Clerk Patrick Gichohi was also elected to the position of chairman of society of clerks in the association. Mr Gichohi will chair the clerks’ meetings under the Commonwealth arrangement. Marende succeeds Tanzanian Speaker Samuel Sitta. More...


Call for EA army: President Yoweri Museveni has called for a joint East African defence system to protect the region’s interests against new forces of colonialism. More...
All 24 Luhya MPs to attend economic conference in Kakamega

By Stephen Makabila, Oct 5 2009
Twenty four Members of Parliament (MPs) from Western Province have organised an economic conference in the region aimed at drumming up support for the area as a suitable investment destination. The leaders want to use the forum forum to chart ways of reviving the region’s economy. The two-day conference Western Province Investment Conference (WEPIC) will held at Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology (MMUST) from October 8 to 9.
It is sponsored by the Kenya Investment Authority, Lake Basin Development Authority (LBDA),Mumias Sugar Company and Equity Bank. Kenya Investment Authority is a statutory body mandated to promote investments in the country. The conference comes seven months after the closure of the Webuye based Pan-African Paper Mills, which was one of the economic mainstay of the region. Mr Kibisu Kabatesi of the WEPIC Technical Secretariat yesterday said the conference’s objective is to deliberate on ways of attracting more investments into the region. "WEPIC will be an input of the local people, and the varied and valued thinkers from the region to reason together. It will bring together stakeholders to help chart a blueprint for investments and create wealth for Western Province," said Kabatesi. In an inaugural meeting attended by key Cabinet ministers Wycliffe Oparanya (National Planning and Vision 2030), Fred Gumo (Regional Development), and Paul Otuoma (Fisheries Development) in October last year, the minister pledged to revive the region’s economy."No MP should be proud to lead poor people. There is no dignity in being poor. Let’s not be afraid of being rich," said Deputy premier Musalia Mudavadi. More...

Webuye's Panafrican paper mills
Panafrican Paper Mills (above) on which Webuye was entirely dependent collapsed in March this year and below a street in Mumias Township which is dependent on Mumias Sugar Ltd.
Mumias Town
Muite defends Wako as a dog that protects its master well

By George Munene, Oct 5 2009
Reforming the president’s powers is the key to stability and progress in the country, former MP Paul Muite said on Monday. Mr Muite who is also a lawyer, said it was cowardly for Parliament to target Attorney General Amos Wako whom they accuse of being incompetent and standing in the way of reforms. According to him, the real problem was the presidency but not in the AG who was just a presidential appointee. Last week, some MPs said they would push for Mr Wako to be sacked, accusing him of frustrating the war on corruption. Mr Muite said Mr Wako did a good job of serving the retired president Moi and looking after the interests of the incumbent as Kenyans continue suffering. Mr Muite was speaking at a fundraising ceremony in aid of a Kirinyaga church yesterday. More...

Miss Uganda 2009, Maria Namiiro
Miss Uganda 2009: Maria Namiiro
Fury over Miss Uganda

By Robert Kalumba, Oct 5 2009
Despite her experience of participating in seven international beauty pageants, Namiiro’s pick for Miss Uganda has created controversy, a curse following every organiser time after time, writes Robert Kalumba. The press conference at the Imperial Royale Hotel, Primose Hall last Monday – a day after the new Miss Uganda was crowned – was, to say the least, a bruising verbal contest between the Miss Uganda organisers and the press. The problem stems from the winner, Maria Namiiro. She lives, studies, works and is a citizen of Britain. So how then did a “Briton” win Miss Uganda? That was the major query. More...

Maize harvest to drop by 65%

By Osinde Obare, Oct 5 2009
Up to 65 percent of maize crop harvest could fail thanks to heavy rains that have hampered maize harvesting in North Rift, adding more woes to farmers earlier hit by crop failure. The rains have pounded the region over the last two weeks, forcing farmers to discontinue harvesting. In Trans Nzoia District, poor yields are expected after a dry spell led to crop failure. Trans Nzoia West District Agricultural Officer Paul Busienei said maize production was expected to drop. Major maize growing areas in Kwanza and Trans Nzoia West districts experienced drought earlier in the year. "We expect at least 65 per cent maize crop failure in most areas except Trans-Nzoia East District, which will get a good harvest," he said. More...

Jeff Otieno
The late Jeff Joackim Otieno who disappeared a month ago. His body was found at Kenyatta National Hospital Mortuary on Friday after a frantic search by his family.
Missing student found dead

By our correspondents, Oct 5 2009
The body of a student who disappeared in Nairobi a month ago has been found. Jeff Joackim Otieno’s body was found at the Kenyatta National Hospital morgue last Thursday, after almost a month of searching by the family. The first year Political Science student at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa was last seen on August 29, and disappeared while on his way home to Nairobi’s South B Estate after he had been out with friends. Ms Anne Akinyi, Otieno’s elder sister who came from the US a week ago to help in the search said they found the body among other unidentified ones that were to be disposed of last Friday. More...

Kangundo MP admits receiving US visa ban letter

By Peter Opiyo, Oct 5 2009
Kangundo MP Johnstone Muthama admitted receiving a warning letter from the US and became the third to own up. Others who have admitted receipt include Constitutional Affairs minister, Mutula Kilonzo and ODM chief whip, Jakoyo Midiwo (MP for Gem). The letter threatens to ban some 15 public officials from travelling to the US. Twelve other recipients of the letter that has thrown Kenya into a diplomatic row with President Barack Obama’s administration have preferred to keep quiet about it, two weeks on. On Sunday, Mr Muthama claimed he was a reformist, contrary to the US’s perception and threatened to write a reply to Washington, attaching his contributions. More...

Johnstone Muthama and Jakoyo Midiwo
Birds of a feather: Kangundo MP Johnstone Muthama (left) and ODM chief whip, Jakoyo Midiwo have owned up to receiving letters warning them thay will be banned from visiting US unless they support political reforms. The pair caused a sensation in March this year when they demanded a salary of Sh1.5m a month before taxation.
19 die in grisly Kericho accident

By Peter Mutai, Oct 5 2009
Nineteen people died in just two accidents at the weekend, raising questions whether the spirited campaign by the police, inspired by the new Commissioner Mathew Iteere, is getting results. Fourteen people, among them a one-year-old girl, met their deaths on Sunday in a grisly road accident along the Kericho-Kisumu road. All 11 passengers and the driver of a Molo Line Prestige shuttle van travelling from Kisumu to Nairobi died on the spot when a trailer whose brakes failed crushed their vehicle. Two pedestrians, including a teenage boy headed to church, were also killed in the 9.30am accident. More...

Kericho accident
The mangled wreck of a matatu that collided head on with a trailor at the infamous black spot on Kericho-Kisumu road killing all its 14 passengers.
Tensions mark election of new Bungoma bishop

By Benson Kwalia, Oct 5 2009
Bungoma Anglican Church administrative secretary Rev George Mechumo has been elected bishop of the diocese.He succeeds Bishop Eliud Wabukala, who was elevated to Anglican Archbishop of Kenya in April. Rev Mechumo was elected by 12 votes against close rival St Crispin Bungoma vicar-general Rev Kistos Kere Khisa’s 11 votes. Rev Joseph Juma Weswa was knocked out in the first round of voting. The vote was conducted by a 23-man electoral college presided over by counsels Julius Khakula from Bungoma and Tom Onyango from Nairobi. Tension was high at St Crispin ACK church where the elections were held as supporters of the candidates confronted each other over allegations that the church’s head office had manipulated the voting. It was alleged that the seven delegates from the ACK head office had all voted for Rev Mechumo. More...

George Mechumo
Rev George Mechumo (Centre) celebrates after he was elected Bishop of Bungoma diocese at St.Crispin ACK church Bungoma amid allegations of rigging by delegates from ACK headquarters. Unsuccessful candidates included Rev Stanley Lungai, Rev Joseph Kaniala, Rev Patrick Pyoko Biti, Rev Benson Opunga Oballa, Rev Henry Samson Kosio and Rev Julius Wamukota. The elections were witnessed by Bishops Thomas Kogo of Eldoret, Jackson ole Sapit of Kericho and Daniel Munene of Kirinyaga.
Defeat for Obama as Rio de Janeiro declared host of 2016 Olympics

By our correspondents, Oct 3 2009
President Obama suffered a humiliating defeat yesterday after his home town of Chicago lost out to Rio de Janeiro in its bid to hold the 2016 Olympics. Chicago was the first city ejected from voting by the International Olympic Committee, a move met by stunned silence among an enormous crowd gathered at Chicago’s Daley Plaza. In Rio, a massive beachside crowd erupted with joy on hearing the result. Chicago received only 18 of the 95 eligible votes in the first round. One IOC member said: “How can we give the symbol of peace to a country that is at war?”More...

copacabana beach
Carnivore atmosphere as Copacabana beach erupts at the news Rio de Janeiro had won its bid to host the 2016 Olympics and not Chicago. Pic: Sergio Moraes - Reuters
Seven Yala mourners die on way to funeral

By our correspondent, Oct 3 2009
Seven mourners died instantly and four others were injured when the matatu they were travelling in collided with a truck. The accident occurred on Friday night at lkoyo near Makindu on the Mombasa-Nairobi road. The mourners were travelling from Yala in Kisumu for a funeral in Mombasa. The driver of the matatu, who was among the dead, was trying to overtake when the accident occurred. More...

Matete DC warns old men against defiling young girls

By our correspondent, Oct 3 2009
A district commissioner in Matete in Kakamega, Edison Nyale has vowed to stamp out rising cases of defilement in the district. Mr Nyale said young girls were falling prey to older men and nothing was being done. He said more than 15 defilement cases had been reported in less than a month but many more went unreported. “I appeal to everyone to report such cases immediately,” he said. “Most of the reported cases are already in court,” Mr Nyale said. He warned older men against marrying young girls as this constituted defilement. More...

Randy boy impregnates six classmates in Butula

By our correspondent, Oct 3 2009
Six pupils at a school in Butula District have been made pregnant by a classmate. Area children’s officer Aston Maungu said all the Class Six girls had pointed a finger at the 16-year-old boy. Mr Maungu said 10 cases of pregnancies involving minors were being reported in Busia and Butula districts monthly. Meanwhile a teacher at a primary school in Nambale Division would soon appear in court for impregnating a Class Six pupil. More...

Vatican in a fix as married priests push their case at Catholic Synod

By our correspondent, Oct 3 2009
Renegade Catholic Priests want their voice heard in the forthcoming second Synod of Catholic bishops set to begin next week in the Vatican. Through their prelature, Married Priests Now, the clergy argue that the synod would be incomplete without the agenda of the clerics renouncing their celibacy vows. The presiding archbishop of the movement in Kenya Rev Daniel Kasomo said the issue of married priests should be top on the agenda in the meeting to be attended by bishops from across the continent. More...

Father Daniel Kasombo Bernard Wamalwa
Mathew Theuri
Married priests in Kenya from left: Daniel Kasombo of Kimilili, Bungoma, top right: Bernard Wamalwa, head of Africa region and Mathew Theuri of Nairobi
Ministers to be arrested and handed over to Ocampo

By our correspondents, Oct 2 2009
Justice and Constitutional Affairs minister Mutula Kilonzo has promised that any ministers and other figures indicted in the post election violence that blighted Kenya in 2008 would be arrested and delivered to The Hague for trial. This has created divisions within the government over the prospect of cabient ministers being arrested and handed over to Luis Moreno-Ocampo, the ICC prosecutor. More...

UK bans 20 Kenyan leaders

By our correspondents, Oct 3 2009
Britain has followed in the footsteps of the US and slapped a travel ban on 20 prominent Kenyan politicians while the European Union demanded action on impunity. It was not immediately clear if the 20 included some of those put on notice by the US last week for stifling reforms, but the British High Commissioner, Rob Macaire, said they included politicians and businesspeople implicated in corruption. AMong those who have gone public with the US letters include, Mutula Kilonzo, the Justice Minister and ODM chief whip, Jakoyo Midiwo but the list is believed to include William Ruto, George Saitoti, Uhuru Kenyatta, Franklin Bett, John Michuki, Francis Muthaura, among others. More...

Jakaya Kikwete, president of Tanzania
President Jakaya Kikwete of Tanzania played a crucial role in diffusing political tensions in Kenya following the disputed presidential elections in 2007.
Marende salutes Kikwete as a visionary leader

By our correspondent, Oct 3 2009
National Assembly Speaker Kenneth Marende saluted Tanzanian President Jakaya Kikwete for his role in bringing peace after post-election violence. He described Kikwete as a role model in focused leadership in Africa during the opening of the Commonwealth Parliamentary Association meeting in Arusha yesterday. More than 800 MPs from Commonwealth countries are attending the meeting. Kenyan delegation included MPs David Musila, Jakoyo Midiwo, Zakayo Cheruiyot, Olago Oluoch, Charles Onyancha, Shakila Abdalla and National Assembly Clerk Patrick Gichohi. More...

Miss Uganda 2009 is a double winner

By our correspondent, Oct 2 2009
Maria Namiiro who is Ugandan born and UK based does it again and wins the Miss Uganda 2009 crown. She follows the many African beauty queens who go back home to contest the national crown and go on to represent their respective countries at the Miss World finals. She also won the best traditional/creative wear category. This was Maria’s 8th beauty contest that she had taken part in globally. Her first prize is a holiday and spending money to a destination of her choice but above all she wins the opportunity to represent Uganda at the Miss World. Her first stop will be Northern Uganda in support of the Latitude Care Network. Brian Lukiya won Mr Uganda 2009 to represent Uganda at Mr World 2010 in South Korea

Miss Uganda 2009, Maria Namiiro
Miss Uganda 2009: Maria Namiiro
Five Ugandan universities blacklisted

By Richard Wanambwa, Oct 2 2009
The National Council for Higher Education (NCHE) has blacklisted five private universities saying they do not meet the minimum qualifications. According the Deputy Executive Director, Prof. Michael Lejeune, the universities that face closure include Latin University of Theology, Luweero University, Nile University in Arua, Global Open University with two campuses in Kampala and Mbale, and Central Buganda University in Mpigi District. More...


MPs demand apology from Wako: The parliamentary opposition caucus has demanded an apology from Justice minister Mutula Kilonzo and AGl Amos Wako over remarks made over the House decision to annul the reappointment of Aaron Ringera as KACC director. More...
85% of Kenyans turn to herbal medicine

By Mwakera Mwahefa, Oct 2 2009
The high cost of modern healthcare services is seeing more than 85 per cent of rural people and urban poor to seek alternative medicine. practitioners, the Nation has learnt. National Traditional Health Practitioners Association national chairperson Lydia Matoke said health services had become elusive for ordinary Kenyans. “How many people can afford private or public hospitals’ charges?” she asked. “The majority are ‘detained’ due to unpaid bills,” she said at the celebration of African Traditional Medicine Day at the Mombasa Municipal Stadium. More...

Ardi, man's oldest ancestorThe 4.4 million year-old fossil: "This is not an ordinary fossil. It's not a chimp. It's not a human. It shows us what we used to be."
Man's oldest ancestor found

By Jonathan Amos, Oct 2 2009
An ancient human-like creature that may be a direct ancestor to our species has been discovered by researchers. The assessment of the 4.4-million-year-old animal called Ardipithecus ramidus is reported in the journal Science. Even if it is not on the direct line to us, it offers new insights into how we evolved from the common ancestor we share with chimps, the team says. Fossils of A. ramidus were first found in Ethiopia in 1992, but it has taken 17 years to assess their significance. The most important specimen is a partial skeleton of a female nicknamed "Ardi". More...

Communist China at 60 celebrates capitalist achievements

By our correspondent, Oct 2 2009
China celebrated its rise to a world power over 60 years of Communist rule Thursday, staging its biggest-ever parade of military hardware with over 100,000 marching masses in a display that stirred patriotism - and some unease. Police blocked off a wide area around central Beijing's Tiananmen Square for the 60th anniversary of the People's Republic. People were told to stay away and watch the events on television, though that did not dampen a festive air as residents gathered in homes and alleys.The feel-good, if heavily scripted moment tapped into Chinese pride surrounding the country's turnaround from the war-battered, impoverished state the communists took over on Oct. 1, 1949 to the dynamic, third-largest world economy of today. More...

China at 60
Everything in China is choreographed to match in step, colour and even height especially on an important occasion like the celebration of 60 years of communist rule.
'Cow for murder' farmer arrested in Trans Nzoia

By Osinde Obare, Oct 2 2009
A farmer in Trans-Nzoia East District has been arrested over the killing of Peter Kirwa. The suspect had offered a cow to compensate for the murder, but the deceased’s family rejected the offer. The turn of events was after the Wednesday edition of The Standard highlighted the struggle by Kirwa’s family for justice in a stry titled "A cow for son you killed? No way, family says". Kachibora OCS Samson Singerai said they were holding the farmer in connection with the killing. More...

Fake lawyer jailed

By Wahome Thuku, Oct 2 2009
Two young lawyers set up a private law firm in July 2006, to defend those on the wrong side of the law. After sharpening their skills at the Law School and a private practice in other firms, they probably did not anticipate landing in jail. Titus Otieno Koceyo and Eddie Jadianga Amadi yesterday got a rude shock after the High Court jailed one for four months and fined the other for filing suits before Justice David Onyancha through an illegal law firm. More...

Wako dismisses firm's Sh636 suit as fraudulent

By Nancy Akinyi, Oct 2 2009
A pharmaceutical company has been told a multi-million shilling contract it signed three years ago with the Ministry of Medical Services is invalid. Attorney-General Amos Wako told the court the Sh636 million contract was obtained through fraud. Mr Wako said this in reply to a suit filed by Dol International Ltd against the ministry’s PS James ole Kiyiapi, Kenya Medical Supplies Agency and the AG. More...

Shitanda sued for twins upkeep

By Evelyn Kwamboka, Oct 2 2009
Housing Minister Soita Shitanda has been sued for upkeep of twins born out of wedlock. The children, born in 2001 out of a relationship he had with a woman from Eastern Province, landed him in court yesterday on claims that he had failed to exercise parental responsibilities. The twins, through their mother, are seeking Sh135,000 a month to cater for their food, school fees, transport, medical care and other expenses. The minister, who is married, yesterday spent more than an hour before the trial magistrate Ms E Mbugua fighting the claim. When he realised there were journalists waiting at the Court, he sneaked out through a back door. More...

Soita Shitanda, Housing Minister
Housing Minister, Soita Shitanda who is also the MP for Malava is accused of neglecting his children born out of wedlock to a woman from Eastern Province. The case will be heard on October 22, 2009.
24 powerful ministers blocking reforms - MP

By our correspondents, Oct 2 2009
A clique of non-reformists within Government is blocking implementation of the recommendations in Agenda Four. Yesterday, Public Accounts Committee Chairman Bonny Khalwale said such leaders should be ignored to enable Kenyans achieve a new Constitution. "The dilemma is the Cabinet of 40 has 24 individuals adversely mentioned in corruption," Dr Khalwale said. More...

Canadian bishop charged with child porn

By our correspondents, Oct 1 2009
The former bishop of the Antigonish diocese, who resigned on the weekend, has been charged with possessing and importing child pornography. The charges against Bishop Raymond Lahey, 69, came just weeks after his Roman Catholic diocese reached a $15-million settlement with people who said they were abused by priests as children. The charges were laid last Friday but just became public knowledge on Wednesday. The bishop’s whereabouts are unknown. Ottawa police say Bishop Lahey was sent for a secondary examination at the Ottawa airport on Sept. 15 as he was returning to Canada. More...

Bishop Raymond Lahey
Bishop Raymond Lahey of Halifax, Canada. Charged with child pornography.
Ugandan waragi kills 7

By our correspondents, Oct 1 2009
SEVEN people have been confirmed dead and 11 hospitalised after consuming the prohibited potent gin (waragi), sold in sachets, on Ssese Islands. This brings the national death toll as a result of the poisonous liquor to 40. More...


China outlaws divorce

Couples in China's biggest provincial municipality will not be allowed to divorce during celebrations of 60 years of communist rule although weddings will go ahead in Chongqing during the eight-day holiday beginning on Thursday. More...

Ocampo moves in to arrest 10 top violence suspects

By David Ohito, Oct 1 2009
It’s official. Key suspects in post-election violence will face justice at The Hague, Netherlands. The International Criminal Court Chief Prosecutor Luis Moreno-Ocampo, who has in his possession names of ten top persons suspected to have either funded or planned the mayhem, said this. Ocampo swung into action and proposed a three-pronged approach to resolve Kenya’s unprecedented civilian strife. More...

Earthquake hits Indonesia

Anne Barrowclough, Oct 1 2009
Sumatrans ran screaming into the street today as a second powerful earthquake hit the Indonesian island just 12 hours after a devastating tremor struck the southern city of Padang, where thousands are feared dead. Fires raged throughout the city all day, despite torrential rain, as rescuers clawed desperately with their bare hands through the rubble of homes, a seven-storey hotel and at least one hospital that were destroyed. More...

EX MP wins defamation suit against Kenya Times

By Stella Mwangi, Oct 1 2009
A former MP will be smiling all the way to the bank after the High Court awarded him Sh6 million in a defamation case. Former Mogotio MP Joseph Korir won the case against Times News Services Ltd, which publishes the Kenya Times newspaper. Nakuru High Court Judge Murugi Mugo also awarded interest on the amount and cost of the suit. More...

Kibaki humbled as era of imperial presidency ends

By our correspondents, Oct 1 2009
Justice Aaron Ringera gave in to public and parliamentary pressure, dispatched a resignation letter to the President, and faced the Press to break the news. The Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission’s besieged director threw in the towel to reclaim what remains of his honour after claims he was being propped by those who perceived him as a safe bet, one who won’t fight corruption with the passion needed to win the war. He gave no clue in the news conference beamed live on television and followed by thousands, on his next move. But his unsurprising step handed Parliament a historic triumph over the Presidency and its executive authority. More...

Fatuma Sichale and Aaron Ringera
Exit door: Aaron Ringera and his deputy Fatuma Sichale exit Integrity House for the last time after resigning from their plum jobs at the discredited KACC yesterday.
New sugar factory okayed in Nyanza

By Nicholas Anyuor, Oct 1 2009
It is sweet news for cane farmers after the Kenya Sugar Board allowed a private investor to establish a second factory in South Nyanza. Board Chairman Okoth Obado said they had allowed Sukari Industries to put up a multi-billion shilling sugar mill in Ndhiwa District. He said the factory will occupy some 250 acres of Homa Bay County Council land in Kanyikela location, and would help cane farmers who have had to ferry their produce to Sony, which is several kilometres away. But some local leaders opposed the move. More...

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