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6 Kenyans die in metropolitan Atlanta in one month

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BY BMJ MURIITHI

An unprecedented death wave has hit the Kenyan community in Metropolitan Atlanta leaving the immigrant community in utter shock, disbelief and financially exhausted.

In a span of one month, six deaths have been reported. It all began with the demise of a young man named Brian Kabage under suspicious circumstances.

Then followed Mr Timothy Majanja Lukalia, the 71 year old man who passed away at Grady Memorial Hospital in downtown Atlanta after living in North America for an uninterrupted 50 years. Majanja was buried in Lubao Village, Kakamega County on Saturday.

The late Brian Kabage

Then came the death of Sarah Njeri, a young lady who left behind two beautiful girls.  Sarah was a daughter to Salome Kirega and had been hospitalized at Kennestone Hospital for several months.

The late Sarah Njeri.

Just as the community was trying to come to terms with the sad news of the death of Ms Njeri, another young woman, Loise Mumbi Mukundi , who had been ill, passed on. She had lived in Georgia for 5 years before relocating to Huntsville, Alabama but still called Georgia her home.

 

The late Loise Mumbi Mukundi.

And even before both Sarah and Mumbi were buried, the shocking news of the death of 44 year old Margaret Nga’ng’a, a Kenyan born nurse whose body was found in her parked car at Northside Hospital-Cherokee in Canton, Georgia broke.

READ ALSO:   Majanja's family appeals for help as fundraiser planned this Saturday in Atlanta to help fly body home

 

Margaret left behind four beautiful kids.

The late Margaret Ng’ang’a.

And as a memorial service in honor of Ms Nganga was being held at the Kenyan American Community Church, the family of Bob Maina Kirigwi, was struggling with a decision on whether to let the medical personnel at Kennestone Hospital unplug the life support machine and pronounce him dead. On Tuesday, May 28th, a message was posted on Kenyans in Georgia Facebook Group announcing the death of Mr Kirigwi.

After each death of a Kenyan in US (or at least most of them), just as is tradition, compatriots form a funeral committee to raise funds to pay for funeral expenses. The cost ranges anywhere from $9,000 to 13,000, depending on whether a body is buried in Kenya or in the US.

In some cases, if family members decide to accompany the body to Kenya, the cost can go up to $40,000 or even higher.

 

 

The late Bob Maina Kirigwi.

 

In the wake of the Atlanta death wave, Ms Priscilla Wandu, a medical professional based in Georgia, said it is high time the Kenyan Community seriously rethought of how to deal with death when it comes and be sensitized on some preventive measures which could save a life or two down the line.

READ ALSO:   SAD: Body of another Kenyan woman found in an apartment in US

“Information is power and I think those of us who have it can help save a life in future if only we can get a platform to impart the knowledge,” she told this reporter recently by phone.

With these deaths, the cost of funerals has also come into sharp focus with many Kenyans saying – understandably so -that they are fatigued.

The late Timothy Majanja

“I know whenever I raise this issue, some people say I am an enemy of development, but I will say it again…we can’t sustain this harambee business for very long. This money comes from the same pockets,” said Miriam Wanjiru, a resident of Kennesaw, Georgia. “I know we all want to help but there are better proven ways of handling such matters and Kenyans in the US should move with the times,” she added.

Another Kenyan, John Karis, writes the following on Instagram: “What is wrong with emulating the Wazungus when it comes to the way we manage matters to do with death? I admire them.”

Let us seriously think of life insurance schemes that cater for these things. They are realities that we can’t just sweep under the carpet, he adds in a separate post.

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4 Comments

4 Comments

  1. njuguna muigai

    May 29, 2018 at 5:08 pm

    When friends offer their time and money, the bereaved family should be be appreciative. Why should the whole family decide to travel to Kenya yet they are overburdening the friends who are helping them? There might be some medical billS to clear too.

  2. kefa

    May 30, 2018 at 3:28 am

    I agree with you. People rush to insure their cars and property from damage or loss but forget to also insure themselves. Is that property worth more than your life?

    It is the high time kenyans living in the diaspora started taking life insurance. life insurance will help to pay medical bills in case of hospitalition, you will be copensated incase of permanent or temporary disability, your family will be compensated if the worst happen and they lose you.

    It is very sad seeing people conducting harambees just to send a body home or settle medical bills. Here is a very informative article I found.>>>

    4 Things That Happen When You Die. Number 4 Will Shock You! Link: https://goo.gl/YqMyWq

  3. njuguna muigai

    June 3, 2018 at 9:16 am

    Let us examine ourselves do we overburden ourselves for working too much some of us work average of eighty hours a week. Is that not working a lot

  4. Regina

    June 3, 2018 at 11:35 am

    I believe an agency like the Foskus Foundation was started due to unforetold occurrences like these. Foskus is providing a form of insurance alternative to Kenyans in situations like these.

    http://www.foskus.com

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Business

You can own this Bugatti La Voiture Noire car for only $19m or Ksh1.9B

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Most expensive cars in the world – what are they and how much do they cost? We’ve gathered a collection from 10 most expensive autos all over the world – from Bugatti Chiron with price tag $2,7 million to Bugatti эLa Voiture Noireэ for $19 million. Some of them are impossible to buy even you have required amount of money. LKat’s begin with Bugatti.

Bugatti has unveiled the “La Voiture Noire” translated as “the black car” made entirely from carbon fiber. The first one of the Limited Edition car has been sold for $19 million to Ferdinand Piech, the owner of VW group.

Designed by Salome Etienne, it is inspired by its predecessors Veyron and Chiron and the pre-war Type 57SC Atlantic.

Powered by an 8 liter, 16 cylinder engine that churns out a jaw-dropping 1,500 HP the car should be able to reach above 450 km/h. Bugatti has refused to reveal its performance specifications.

The front is dominated by the trademark horseshoe-shaped Bugatti grill and blends into an aerodynamically swept-back design with sloping windscreen and wrap-around tail lamps. Also be sure to check best free car website templates and themes.

Bugatti La Voiture Noire

Bugatti La Voiture Noire

-beautifullife

READ ALSO:   SAD: Kenyan woman passes away in US
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Business

Smell of money: The millionaire chamas of Marikiti market

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Wakulima Market or ‘Marikiti’ is one large pipeline of food to residents of Nairobi. It is noisy, dirty and has always been busy since opening shop in 1967. It’s not the kind of place anyone would imagine is a hub of millionaires.

But Maritiki, Kikuyu corruption for ‘market’,  has churned out millionaires in real coin on the back of trading in potatoes, tomatoes, hoho, nduma, nguace, maize, beans and assorted fruits. For starters, traders in the chaotic market have a collective business turnover of between Sh100 million and Sh500 million in a day! That’s before deduction of operating costs, according to Cyrus Kaguta Githaiga, the chair of Marikiti market  Such money can attract dark forces — which is why there are daily  interdenominational fellowship sessions to fight juju. Though initially meant for 300 traders, the market now serves over 20, 000 people, comprising farmers, wholesalers, brokers, retailers, vendors, handcart pushers and the kua – the carriers on whose backs and shoulders sacks reach different bus stops en-route to the soko and then your plate.

The profit margins are eye-watering. A trader can go home with anything between Sh10,000and to Sh50,000 in one day. The bulk of traders are members of the Wakulima Market Traders Association Group, the chama which collectively run different businesses, including trucks, parcels of land in Thika, Juja and Ruai, besides owning several buildings around Kenya. There are also other chamas, mostly operated by women since the 1970s when, like all chamas, they started with dishing out money merry-go-round style in the 1970s. Some early members died and their children inherited the shares.

READ ALSO:   DEATH ANNOUNCEMENT: Loise Mumbi Mukundi of Huntsville, Alabama

The contribution is mandatory and one is fined for failing to make a contribution in time. A normal group has between 10 to 20 members who contribute between Sh500 and Sh1,000 a week.

The high rollers are in a different league, as they contribute Sh10,000 or more daily. Faridah Oronga a trader at Marikiti says through the chama, “I have educated my children and made other investments. Our chama has bought parcels of land valued at millions of shillings. I will get my share the day we decide to dispose of the lands. We have also invested in lorries that transport goods to various parts of the country.” Faridah adds that besides business, the chama also serves as a social welfare group. Each member contributes Sh1,000 to a sick member and “it is a must to contribute. Those who fail to contribute will also not get any help when they are in need.

During burials, we hire a bus and select a few individuals to represent us. We don’t let our own to suffer. We live as a family.” Salome Wanjiru has been operating at Marikiti since 1997 and says that “we oil the economy,” besides making individual investments like buying land in Ruai.

She says most Nairobians perceive them as simple market women yet “we own several buildings” and money from the chama has boosted her “dairy and poultry farming business back in the village, and all my children have completed university.” The traders also have access to readily available loans. Margaret Muthoni, a trader, says they borrow small guaranteed loans in the morning and repay in the evening.

READ ALSO:   SAD: Brother to Atlanta-based Kenyan murdered in cold blood

“I make enough to pay back the principal and keep the profit. The secret is to take advantage of the compounding interest.”

Women sell groceries at the Marikiti market in the morning. [File, Standard]

The market has 28 different sections with different products and thus, different chamas. Those dealing in potatoes and onions could for instance have their own chamas.

There are 20,000 non-registered and 8,000 registered members, but all groups fall under All Wakulima Market Traders Association with an elected chair.

Money collected by all the chamas easily oscillated between Sh100 million and Sh500 million in a day and Githaiga is proud: “We have created wealth and are successful. Most of us have built homes, own matatus and made investments worth millions of shillings using this concept. We realised that this initiative is a powerful tool, which has a lot of benefits.” Githaiga ensures all traders’ rights are respected, besides providing a conducive environment for working.

“We pushed for the closure of betting shops near the market because traders were becoming lazy and spent their earnings betting. Every day, we have a fellowship at 6am through Wakulima Interdenominational Pastors Welfare to fight juju,” he explained.

Githaiga says some of the biggest challenges is garbage disposal and “hawkers who create congestion on the roads adjacent to the market. Hawkers are good investors if they are managed well, but should be designated on less busy roads.”

READ ALSO:   SAD: Kenyan woman passes away in US

Githaiga wants the county government to look into, among others; the expansion of Marikiti besides, improving its drainage system, refuse disposal and recycling of garbage.

Other downsides are that “many people don’t like coming to the market because they say it is dirty and insecure.” He says that for the chama to be successful, 100 per cent integrity is a must and rules should be set in such a way that if someone breaches them, they are fined.

Discipline is key.” Stella adds that to understand table banking, one has to look at cooperatives as a bigger version of table banking with the difference being that they have “greater numbers and systems to control the numbers, but the bigger the number, the larger the complications.

However, they’re  regulated and you can save and borrow three times your savings and at friendly interest rates.” One problem with cooperatives is that shares are controlled as some put a cap on monthly contributions, besides resolutions being passed during an AGM.

By Ghaflaco.ke

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Lifestyle

Meet Brother Paul, the balcony preacher who wants no sadaka

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It’s been over 100 days since the country went into partial lockdown, leaving churches in the cold with other non-essential service providers.  News that left many churchgoers in shock and total confusion did not move Paul Macharia even by an inch.

The All Saints Cathedral preacher saw a window of opportunity and decided to move the church from a four-walled building to a very unusual place: estate balconies.

“The balcony to balcony church service took shape when Covid-19 was declared a pandemic. I decided to take the church outside the four walls of the cathedral,” he told The Nairobian.

Planning for the services involves liaising with tenants and owners of apartments. “If all of them are okay with us to conduct a service within their estate, we come and have a church service or a Sunday school lesson. A lot of people have embraced us,” he said.

Macharia is easy to spot from a distance because of his unique dressing style and charm. His devotion and love for the gospel and children has earned him the nickname ‘Uncle Paul.’ The man from Rwathia village in Murang’a County has been preaching the gospel in residential places in various towns.

People following the sermons from their balconies

When The Nairobian caught up with him in one of the apartments in Kiambu town, he was donning dungarees, eyeglasses and one could easily feel his deep connection with the congregation who worshipped from balconies.  “In every place we go, we have a Bible lesson, praise and adoration songs which are in line with the lesson of that day. The response has been overwhelming though before people accept you there must be resistance because they have not experienced something like this before and we understand them,” he said.

READ ALSO:   DEATH ANNOUNCEMENT: Loise Mumbi Mukundi of Huntsville, Alabama

Not everyone is open to the idea of balcony churches and sometimes, “people refuse to host us in their apartment blocks, saying that they are not comfortable with people coming from outside to make noise within the estate.”

The 43-year-old is always accompanied by a team of five, which comprises a pianist, technician and three young women who lead praise and worship. Uncle Paul says their biggest challenge is “getting accessing apartments. So far we have been able to visit nine apartment blocks across the metropolis in areas like Syokimau, Kiambu and Zimmerman.

These are hard economic times and we do not charge nor ask for offerings,” he said, adding that, “We give the gospel freely. The Lord has blessed us, so why would we go around asking for money? We are all volunteers and giving from our pockets. It’s a calling but I’m more inclined towards serving his children through Sunday school mtaani. I enjoy what I do because it’s my passion. I hope to do this until I die.”

Macharia, an alumnus of Lenana High School says he uses his car to move around and borrows another from a friend to ferry his team and equipment.

“Transport is also another problem and getting to the various destinations is not easy. Sometimes some of my team members have to use matatus because we are many. “When I was ordained in 2013, I was assigned to be the Sunday school pastor. I could not wear an Anglican priest robe because the kids could trip all over me so I decided to design this outfit. I went and bought an overall and then put the dove of the Holy Spirit. My church has been very accommodative because they see that it is practical attire.” Paul graduated from Catholic University with a bachelor’s degree in commerce and later pursued a master’s degree in Christian ministry from Pan African Christian University.

READ ALSO:   PHOTOS: Kenyan woman who died in Atlanta buried

“I later worked at World Vision for 10 years in the micro-finance department and then transitioned to full-time ministry, where I worked with an organisation called Bible Translation and Literacy for nine years,” Macharia told The Nairobian.

The father of three says that before going to minister at apartments, “I hold Sunday school in my house. My wife is my best friend. She has been very supportive of this ministry. I research any Bible lesson and understand the spirit of that particular scripture. On Covid-19, he remains very hopeful for better days ahead. “If the Lord could heal leprosy, he can surely heal Covid-19,” he said.

“All that I can say is that we don’t know what tomorrow brings, but we know who is in our tomorrow. God is beyond Covid-19, He can do all things and we can trust in Him. Parents should let their children get to know Jesus. My desire is that children should be given an opportunity to hear about the Lord.”

By Standard.co.ke

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