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ODM senator and former AG Wako recognises Uhuru as the President of Kenya, crowd goes wild

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BY BMJ MURIITHI

Former kenya’s attorney General Amos Wako and current senator for Busia County surprised the audience on Saturday  when he openly recognised Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta as the President of Kenya, despite most of his party members holding a different opinion.

Mr Kenyatta, who was accompanied by President Yoweri Museveni of Uganda during the commissioning of the One Stop Border Post in Busia town, just smiled on as Mr Wako, an ODM member, gave his speech.

“I now welcome the two Presidents – Mr Yoweri Kaguta Museveni, the president of Uganda and Uhuru Muigai Kenyatta, the president of Kenya  – to Busia,” said Wako.

“I would like to tell you that these two presidents are committed to the greater economic and social integration of East Africa,” he added as the audience rose in applause.

This is in sharp contrast to the position taken by his party leader Raila Odinga, who insists that Kenyatta is not the bona fide president of Kenya. This comes at a time when analysts say, cracks within the National Alliance (NASA) are getting wider by the day. Odinga and his co-principals have however denied any knowledge of divisions within the political outfit.

Wako became the first senator for Busia county in Western province of Kenya in 2013 and was reelected in 2017. Wako won the senatorial seat after defeating former minister of finance Chris Okemo. He won the senator seat on an Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) being led by Prime Minister Raila Odinga.

A lawyer by profession Amos Wako served as the Attorney General of the republic of Kenya for 20 years (from 13 May 1991 to 26 August 2011). during his reign as the attorney general Wako was an Advocate of the High Court of Kenya,a member of the International Commission of Jurists, Member Council of Legal Education, was a Member Council of International Bar Association. Legal Advisor to Young men Christian Association (Y.M.C.A.) and Kenya Boy Scouts Association.

According to the Kenyan government, the infrastructure project will ease the movement of people and goods across our two countries for the prosperity of our people.

During the event, Kenyatta  said the integration of the East African region will be achieved with the development of shared infrastructure and political commitment of regional leaders.

 

He said the region must integrate to be a truly bigger market, and economically attractive to compete with other economic giants.

“We want to compete with the economic giants of the world. If we have

to compete with giants we have to be giants ourselves,” said President Kenyatta.

President Kenyatta and Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni were in Busia town to commission a one-stop border post to ease the movement of goods and people across the shared border. They addressed a public barasa on the Ugandan side of Busia town.

President Museveni spoke to Uganda’s commitment to integration, but, in reference to fishing disputes by Kenyan small-scale traders, called for radar and tech surveillance to grow fish stocks as well as tackle disputes.

The customs facility, straddling the border comprises offices and space for immigration processes and verification; warehousing and cold rooms for the goods traded across the border; and facilities for expediting trade.

The one-stop border facility is part of measures President Kenyatta and his counterparts from other EAC countries have spearheaded to ease the movement of goods and people within the region.

The One-stop border post concept combines two national border controls into one thereby reducing the time it takes to clear goods and people across the shared

borders. This reduces costs and overall time it takes to transport goods from one point in the region to another.

The first one-stop border post to be commissioned under the EAC integration plan was at Taveta/Holili on the Kenya-Tanzania border. Similar facilities will be set up in all border points all across the region.

President Kenyatta said the commitment of the leaders of the region is bearing fruit as substantial progress has been achieved in the integration process

“I am glad that the people and the leadership of the East African Community have taken this point to heart: wherever I go in the region, I find a new appreciation of the importance of integration, and a new commitment to bringing the people of East Africa together,” said President Kenyatta.

The opening of one-stop border posts and other projects aimed at easing trade in the region has reduced the time it takes to move goods across the EAC. While in the past it took a minimum of 27 days to move a container of goods from Mombasa to western side of EAC, it now takes a maximum of five days.

President Kenyatta was in Uganda from Thursday for an official visit during which he attended the 19th Ordinary Summit of the East African Community Heads of State. He also attended a Heads of State retreat that discussed funding for infrastructure development and health.

President Museveni said economic integration will bring prosperity, security and unity.

Additional reporting by PSCU

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Africa

Invitation to the African Girls Hope Foundation Annual Gala happening this Saturday in Atlanta

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BY BEN KAROMO

African Girls Hope Foundation (AGHF) annual Gala is happening this Saturday at the Kenyan American Community Church in Marietta, Georgia, USA. AGHF  is a non-profit founded by Grace Faraja, a former refugee from the 1990s civil war that ravaged the DRC. She started the foundation to help educate girls in rural Congo caught in the ongoing civil unrest, poverty and disease.

As a former beneficiary of a full scholarship that changed her life, Grace believes providing an education to orphaned and less privileged girls can open a world of opportunities to them and help then end the cycle of poverty and early marriages.

This year, AGHF’s aim is to provide full-year scholarships to 120 girls at a cost of $29 per month per girl. We are seeking your help to raise funds to meet the overall goal of $34,000 for the year 2019-2020.

We ask you to help us meet this goal by donating on our website at https://africangirlshopefoundation.com/.

We prayerfully desire to support the education of 120 girls in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Kenya. With hope that God will open doors to other African countries in the near future. We have partnered with a local pastor running a school in the village of Mulenge in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Our partner has identified numerous girls in the village who are orphans of father and mother. Girls selected as AGHF beneficiaries are 65% of orphans of both parents.

Atlanta residents, please join us for our Annual Fundraising Gala dinner, to be held on November 9th at the Kenyan American Community Church KICC in Marietta, Georgia. Dinner and parking will be provided.

Below are some of the girls who need our help:

 

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Africa

Kenya’s Filthy Rich and Politically Connected running Govt Agencies

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Kenya has become the butt of jokes (no pun intended!) as the country wastes away due to corruption overseen by those in the highest office in the land.

Despite the billions being wasted daily repaying loans that have benefited a few individuals, Kenyans, on the other hand, are languishing as those entrusted with making their lives better continue looting. The country has become a gangsters’ paradise.

Wambui Kibaki and Her Millions

The first agency that was established by an act of parliament to empower youth is the National Employment Authority which has become a fresh wound for job seekers who never seem to meet the criteria for securing a government job.

On Tuesday, Kenyans were up in arms after it became public that President Uhuru Kenyatta had appointed President Kibaki’s wife, Mary Wambui, as the Authority’s Chairperson.

For a term of three years, Wambui is expected to ensure that jobless Kenyans get opportunities and jobs that can alleviate their suffering.

Ironically, Wambui, a conservative and controversial millionaire does not need the job in the sense that she already has more than enough. But why would she take such a position? That is for the appointee and the appointing authority to explain to Kenyans.

 

 

Most other authorities are led by people whose only merit is being politically connected.

These include the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) whose leadership comprises of Eng Joseph Nakodony Nkadayo as the Chairman with Captain Gilbert Macharia Kibe as the Director-General. Nkadayo succeeded a political reject, Samuel Poghisio, who left the entity in 2017 after serving for 2 years.

The other is Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) whose disappointing performance could only go to show the incompetence of those appointed.

Interestingly, the former long-serving head of civil service Francis Muthaura is the chairman of the tax collector. He was appointed for the position last year.

The Sacco Societies Regulatory Authority (SASRA) non-executive chairman is John Mati Munuve.

An interesting political reject serving on the SASRA board is former North Imenti MP Silas Muriuki Ruteere.

Muriuki is a teacher by profession with specialized training in Special Education.

Tana and Athi River Development Authority (TARDA) is chaired by Halima Abdillahi Shaiya who was fired from the Kenya Meat Commission in 2014.

A suspension letter presented in court showed that the KMC board was fired for breaching procurement rules, poor performance and failing to implement directors’ resolutions.

The Retirement Benefits Authority (RBA) is chaired by a relative to President Uhuru Kenyatta Victor R. Pratt. Pratt is the husband to Christine Wambui Kenyatta, now Kristina Pratt, who is Uhuru’s older sister.

A politician on the board of directors going by the information on the Authority’s website is politician Sammy Koech who is the MP for Konoin.

The National Transport and Safety Authority (NTSA) is chaired by Lt Gen (Rtd) Jackson Ndungu Waweru. He was appointed in 2016.

Kenya National Highways Authority (KeNHA) is chaired by Eng Erastus Mwongera whose appointment was challenged in court. In the petition by Peter Tana, Mwongera’s appointment was in gross violation of the rule of law.

Tana said that is not suitable to serve in the capacity since he had already served two terms. The tenure at KeNHA is to end in March 2021.

Mwongera cannot discharge any official duties as KeNHA Chairperson until the hearing and determination of the petition.

The National Environment Management Authority (NEMA) is chaired by John Konchellah but the interesting twist is the political connections in the authority’s op management.

Rejects serving at NEMA include Agostinho Neto who was the Ndhiwa MP in a by-election in 2012 and re-elected in 2013.

The immediate former Tana River woman representative Halima Ware Duri also serves as a board member.

In March this year, the Kerio Valley Development Authority (KVDA) board appointments caused an uproar since the maximum number of 10 appointees was surpassed by 3 members.

The board is chaired by former MP Jackson Kiptanui.

And the Kenya Ports Authority (KPA) is chaired by another political appointee Retired Joseph R.E Kibwana.

Kibwana, who was the first Navy officer to occupy the office of the Chief of General Staff, oversaw the transition of power from President Daniel Moi to President Mwai Kibaki after the 2002 election.

The General has a chequered career having been among the first of 10 African officers and servicemen recruited to the Navy in 1964.

The Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) is chaired by Isaac Awuondo.

In August, KAA announced the departure of its Managing Director/CEO Jonny Andersen, effective September 30, 2019.

“Jonny has been with the KAA since November 2016 opted not to renew his contract which was due to expire on November 21st 2019,” said a statement from the Authority.

James P.M. Ndegwa is the Chairman of the Capital Markets Authority (CMA). Coming from among Kenya’s wealthiest families, his seat at the table is reserved.

Interestingly, Muthaura’s son Paul Murithi is the CEO. He was appointed on April 22, 2016 with the call backdated to January 2, 2016.

He is expected to leave CMA at the end of this year after serving for seven-and-a-half years.

Out of the 14 Authorities in Kenya, most of them have politicians who have lost in elections appointed as board members or chairs.

In a country where a majority of the youth are wasting away despite their academic qualifications, consecutive governments have consistently sidelined the youth in favour of the politically connected.

Only President Kibaki gave the youths a considerate treatment when he opened the system for youth self-employment. Kibaki’s time saw the country register the highest number of the motorbike industry jobs.

It is at this time that boda bodas became part and parcel of the Kenyan society.

-businesstoday.co.ke

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Africa

Remains of victims of Ethiopian Airlines crash flown home

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The remains of thirty-two Kenyans who perished in the tragic Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 plane crash on March 10, 2019, have been flown to Nairobi today.

An Ethiopian Airline plane carrying the fragments of the deceased landed at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on Monday morning.

The remains arrived in specialised caskets and a brief function was held after arrival. Only close family members are to be given the caskets bearing the fragments.

The bodies were severely damaged beyond recognition prompting Ethiopian Airlines to consider DNA analysis to identify their remains.The 32 victims are among 157 people who were killed in the plane crash at Bishoftu town, shortly after taking off to Nairobi.

It is after the International Police through its Incident Response Team revealed on September 12, 2019, that it had successfully identified the 157 passengers who boarded the plane.The team declared the exercise a success saying “six months on after the plane crash, every single victim has been successfully identified.”

Family members of the victims of the Ethiopian Plane crash that killed 157 people from different nationalities visited the crash site to give their last respect and prayers to their departed one at Tulu Fera in Ejera. [ Maxwell Agwanda, Standard]

“The INTERPOL Incident Response Team (IRT) deployed following the crash of the Ethiopian Airlines plane in March has completed its task, assisting with the successful identification of all victims of the deadly disaster,” the Interpol noted on its website.It noted that the identification exercise was prompted by a request from the airlines’ company.

It stated: “At the request of the Ethiopian authorities, two days after the accident INTERPOL sent an IRT to assist with the operation. The team’s role was to coordinate the international police disaster victim identification (DVI) response and coordinating the antemortem data supplied by member countries.

”Interpol further revealed that the process was aided by a team of 100 DVI experts drawn from 14 countries in Africa, Europe and America. The exercise took 50 days.

Fingerprints and DNA samples were extracted from 48 people, Interpol noted.Also in September, the US-based Boeing planes manufacturer had announced that it had set aside USD2 billion as Financial Assistance Fund for assisting families of victims of the plane crash, which involves the Ethiopian Airlines crash.

The Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 nosedived just six minutes after leaving Bole International Airport to Jomo Kenyatta International Airport killing all on board.In the incident, Kenya was the worst-hit country losing 32 victims in the crash.

By Standard

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