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LIVE TV: Uncertainty looms as Kenyan High Court nullifies presidential ballot paper tender

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Daily Nation is reporting that the Kenyan High Court has ordered the electoral commission to advertise a new tender for printing presidential poll ballots.

“However, Dubai-based Al Ghurair Printing and Publishing Company will proceed with the printing of ballots for other races, judges Joel Ngugi, John Mativo and George Odunga said on Friday,” wrote the paper on Friday

SH2.5BN

In their judgement, the judges faulted the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) for failing to consult all candidates in the August poll before awarding the Sh2.5-billion tender to Al Ghurair.

The commission, the three-judge bench established, also did a shoddy job on public participation as required in law.

The judgement is a big victory for the National Super Alliance (Nasa) and its presidential flagbearer Raila Odinga who had opposed the tender award, citing conflict of interest

 

 

Mr Odinga’s alliance had argued the award to Al Ghurair favoured the incumbent Uhuru Kenyatta, his arch-rival in the March 4, 2013 and now August 8, 2017 polls.

Al Ghurair, Nasa claimed, had close links with Mr Kenyatta, the first family and senior people in the Jubilee Party.

BLOW

However, the judges dismissed this allegation in their judgement, saying Nasa relied on newspaper cuttings to prove the claim yet paper cuttings are not admissible in law.

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President Kenyatta’s Jubilee had supported IEBC’s defence and the verdict has also dealt a blow to the ruling party.

With only 31 days left to the General Election, IEBC will have to race against time to deliver ballots for the high-stakes election in which both Mr Odinga and Mr Kenyatta are battling for political lifeline.

Mr Kenyatta is seeking a second and final term while Mr Odinga is seeking to break the jinx that has seen miss State House three times.

19 MILLION

IEBC on Thursday said Al Ghurair had executed over 50 percent of the work but printing of presidential ballots is yet to start.

The printer, the commission said, had been given the green light to print ballots for all races that did not have conflicts stemming from candidates’ list.

The judgement means Al Ghurair will miss only 19 million out of the 120 million ballots it was supposed to print and deliver to IEBC.

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Babu Owino moved to Gigiri

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By JUDITH GICOBI

Babu Owino, Embakasi East MP, has been moved to Gigiri Police Station. He is supposed to stay there for the rest of the weekend.

Police officers noticed an increased movement of young people near the police station, which was interfering with the smooth running of work there.

“According to intelligence reports, the MP’s supporters were planning to protests outside the station and we had to move him. This is one of the busy police stations in Nairobi and any protest would paralyze our work,” said our source who sought anonymity.

The Mp was taken to Kilimani police station Friday morning after a shooting incident he was involved in at Kilimani B club. 

Babu shot DJ Evolve on the neck, causing him to be admitted at Nairobi Hospital in the Intensive Care Unit (ICU).

George Kinoti, the DCI boss, says the MP is likely to be facing attempted murder charges. They have also recovered the gun used at the incident.

“We will charge him with attempted murder. It is apparent that he wanted to kill the man,” remarked DCI Director George Kinoti as quoted by Nation.

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Kenya eyes up to Sh35bn aid from US to finance projects

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The head of a special US development programme is due in Kenya in the coming week to hold initial talks on the country’s potential eligibility for project funding of up to Sh35 billion.

Sean Cairncross, chief executive of the Millennium Development Corporation (MCC), said in a press briefing on Thursday that Kenya is making “excellent progress” toward meeting criteria for inclusion in the programme.

Successfully completing this initial step would likely result in Kenya being chosen for a “compact” with MCC. Such an arrangement, usually focused on infrastructure development, involves an MCC grant averaging about $350 million (Sh35 billion), Mr Cairncross said.

Established in 2004 during George W Bush’s presidency, the MCC conditions its assistance on countries’ performance in “ruling justly”, following free-market economic policies, and investing in health, education and environment.

Since its inception, the MCC has awarded more than $8 billion (Sh800 billion) to 25 developing countries, 13 of them in Africa. Kenya must make additional progress in controlling corruption before it can be deemed eligible for an MCC compact, Mr Cairncross noted. The country’s standing in that regard is determined by assessments by the World Bank and other “third-party data sources,” the MCC director said.

 Corruption does not have to be eradicated for Kenya to qualify for an MCC compact, Mr Cairncross told reporters. Eligibility for aid is assessed on the basis of a “trend toward dealing with that corruption and a willingness to engage government resources and political will to take those issues on,” he said.

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This is not the first MCC threshold programme for which Kenya has been chosen. It entered into an initiative of that type in 2007, which was aimed at reforming public procurement systems, improving health service delivery, and enhancing the monitoring capacity of government and civil-society organisations.

Despite some progress on each of those fronts, Kenya still fell short of the eligibility standards when the first threshold programme concluded in 2010.

“Kenya is an important partner in East Africa,” the MCC said in December, announcing the country’s approval for a second threshold programme.

That move reflects Washington’s aim to counter China’s influence in Kenya through its large-scale infrastructure investments in recent years.

by nation.co.ke

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Kaimenyi: How I was tempted with billion-shilling bribe offers

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When Prof Jacob T. Kaimenyi was serving as Education Cabinet secretary, a group of people approached him with a strange request: They wanted him to award them the multibillion-shilling tender to supply laptops to Standard One pupils, in line with the Jubilee government’s pledge to give free laptops to children in public primary schools, to a politician. In return for this consideration, the politician offered to reward the CS handsomely, offering him a generous share of the money as kickback.

Prof Kaimenyi did not bite the bait and he told them that what they were asking for was not possible. A few months later, a motion of no confidence in the CS was tabled on the floor of the National Assembly in July 2015. Again, he was approached by a different group of people, this time from Meru, who promised that they could make the motion go away if he gave them Sh5 million to deal with the matter.

“I told them that I could not do such a thing because I didn’t have the money, unless I borrowed it from a bank or stole it,” he reveals. Luckily for him, when the matter was put to the vote after a debate in Parliament, MPs were unable to marshal the numbers needed to kick him out of the Cabinet.

These were by no means the only incidents involving potential corruption and influence peddling that the CS had to face during his tenure in the Cabinet. In his newly released book, Betrayal of Public Trust, Prof Kaimenyi, now Kenya’s ambassador to the Kingdom of Belgium and the European Union, reveals that after he was vetted by Parliament for appointment as a CS in 2013, rumours started doing the rounds that one of the nominees had paid MPs Sh50 million so as to be cleared.

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“Whether this was simply the usual romour mill or not, I wasn’t sure,” he writes in his book, in which he characterises the numerous problems, such as poverty and bad governance in African countries, as the product of electing leaders who lack integrity.

He reveals that when he was vetted for the position of ambassador to Unesco, he was approached by another person, who told him the interview had not gone well and if he could give that person “something”, his case would be considered favourably.

“I must admit that this was one moment in my life when to bribe or not, was brought to an elastic limit,” he confesses.

In the candid book, Prof Kaimenyi details the many incidents when his principles were tested to the limit.

For instance, soon after he was first named to the Cabinet and put in charge of the Ministry of Lands, one of his acquaintances approached him with yet another idea of how they could get rich quickly.

He says that the individual “I had known for a long time wanted us to form a company to identify pieces of land whose leases were about to expire and demand that they part with ‘something’, before I can approve renewal of such leases. When this seemingly enticing proposal was put to me, I could not believe my ears,” he writes in his book, launched last Saturday in Nairobi on the same day that his third book, Don’t Hesitate, was also launched.

READ ALSO:   Kenya wins African vote to seek UN seat after beating Djibouti

Interestingly, not all the offers he received were about money. In two instances, he was offered sex soon after he was made CS. The first instance involved the wife of a friend, who offered to demonstrate to him just how good she was in that respect. The second involved a much older “national leader”, who offered to be with him from time to time. Flummoxed by the offers, he simply laughed them off in the hope that those making the offer would move on with time.

“Leadership,” he writes, “places an individual at the centre of temptations, and these temptations are many. You don’t have to be a bad leader to encounter the allure of shortcuts. You just need to sit at the helm of a nation, organisation or even family, and the floodgate of ideas and options that lead towards abuse will present themselves.”

This book, however, is not just about Prof Kaimenyi’s experiences. Rather, he uses them to spotlight the challenges of leadership in public office and to analyse how leaders ought to act for the benefit of the country and the populace.

“We need to be impatient with the culture of poor service,” he tells his readers. “We need to develop sufficient anger towards abuse by those whom we entrust with leadership across the spectrum.”

Although he offers ideas for reflection, the book is not only prescriptive. It also seeks to understand the root cause of problems in the public sphere, to examine how other cultures have dealt with such challenges and what outcomes they got. And it also challenges both the leaders and the led to think differently about their country, the question of leadership as a general principle and the role of the individual in crafting a better future as a citizen. And although his approach is distinctively Kenyan, this is a book that offers lessons for the rest of Africa.

READ ALSO:   How my husband tricked, abandoned me with our 3 kids in Kenya and returned to the US alone

“Whether a country’s economy booms or finds itself on its knees is dependent on its leaders, especially the one in the highest office in the land,” writes Prof Kaimenyi, arguably the most prolific State officer, having published three books in two years. His first book, with the rather curious title Busy Office versus Responsible Fatherhood, was launched in June 2018.

His third book, Don’t Hesitate, is more of a personal guide, challenging individuals to be proactive in the pursuit of their goals and aspirations. It borrows heavily from Prof Kaimenyi’s own experiences, and his understanding of what other successful individuals have done to make it in life.

“Whereas traditionally patience has been a virtue, we are living in an era where ‘impatience’ is quickly gaining prominence,” he writes in the introduction, arguing that “the future belongs to those who make haste”.

Both books were published by Virtue Book Publishers and each costs Sh1,000.

Virtue Book Publishers works with self-published authors, institutions and organisations who wish to bypass traditional publishers. It specialises in publishing motivational, political and academic books as well as biographies and works of fiction.

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