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Mungatana: How I lost my millions to fake investors

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Former MP Danson Mungatana admitted yesterday he was conned out of a ‘large’ sum in a fake investment oil scheme operating in an undisclosed place.

He was responding to widespread media reports last week that he lost Sh76 million to conmen.

“About eight years ago, I lost a lot of money in a fake investment oil scheme that was run by Abdalla Tamba. He [was] later freed in Kenya, which I came to learn when I saw him on TV,” he said at the Laico Regency.

“After the police displayed him in public, I submitted myself as they had asked if anyone who had been conned to report to them.”

Mungatana explained the business cost him a lot of money together with other prominent individuals.

“Abdalla and his partner came and told me to invest money so we would buy oil. The first and second round there was profit, but the third round, the foreigners simply disappeared and went with the money till recently when I saw him arrested.

“It was not only me who suffered but there were a lot of prominent people who fell prey to the scheme as it seemed genuine.”

The former lawmaker denied that he wanted to be an overnight billionaire.

“My mother taught me to work hard. An accident can happen to anyone as crimes do not respect [people]. If someone suffers such a thing, don’t shame the victim,” Mungatana said.

READ ALSO:   Man who defrauded Mungatana charged
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Health

Corona is no joke, says Kagwe as cases hit 110

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Kenyans should brace themselves for tough times ahead, Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe warned yesterday as the number of people infected with coronavirus surged past 100 while two more patients succumbed to the disease.

In his most candid admission yet of the grim situation the country is facing because of the rapid spread of the disease, the minister painted a worrisome picture in the coming days, sounding the alarm that coronavirus cases were going to rise, a situation that could force the government to impose more stringent restrictive measures.

“This number is going to rise and will do so exponentially. The virus is moved by you and I, therefore we need to change behaviour if we are to limit transmissions. Please do not wait to hear of death near you, for you to realise that this disease is not a joke,” said Kagwe.

The statistics, he added, are now showing that at least a third of the infections were local, given that 40 of those who were tested yesterday had not travelled outside the country. By yesterday 110 people had tested positive.

“The situation is getting worse. It is high time that we as a people take the directives given by the government seriously, maintain hygiene by sanitising and keeping social distance,” said the CS.

The minister, who appeared angry with the carefree attitude that Kenyans were displaying towards the pandemic with some mocking the recovering cases and branding the government’s efforts as mere public relations (PR) stunts, warned that those using social media to belittle the State’s efforts would be arrested.

READ ALSO:   Man who defrauded Mungatana charged

“Why would the government conspire with the World Health Organisation (WHO) to stage a PR stunt out of the current pandemic?” the CS posed.

He was alluding to adverse social media comments over the recovery of the first Corona patient Brenda Cherutich, who had a video chat with President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday.

In a no-holds-barred address at Afya House yesterday where he updated the country on the status of the pandemic, the CS warned those who claim that the spread of the disease is not as serious as the government is making it sound.

“Part of the disappointment is those who claim that they do not know anybody in their area, who has either died or been tested positive of the disease. This is precisely the effort we are trying to make so that we do not hear of death or a positive case,” the apparently frustrated CS said.

The minister said the controversial mandatory quarantine was paying off going by yesterday’s developments. All the additional 29 cases were of individuals who were on forced into isolation in Nairobi.

Prevent interaction

Out of the new cases, three were quarantined at the Aga Khan University Hospital, 11 at Crowne Plaza Hotel at the airport, one each at Nairobi Hospital and Pride Inn Hotel while six were in other isolation facilities. The net effect is that their isolation had prevented interaction with the public and relatives.

READ ALSO:   Man who defrauded Mungatana charged

“These are the people who would have travelled to their villages to stay with their next of kin, friends and even the aged,” Kagwe said.

Acting Director of Health Patrick Amoth, said 40 of those who have tested positive contracted the disease locally.

“This is a confirmation that the virus is here with us,” Amoth said even as it emerged that a 16-year-old was among the newly-infected.

Studies have indicated that elderly people and patients with existing medical conditions were the most vulnerable to the respiratory disease that has forced the government to impose a dawn-to-dusk curfew in the country.

The two patients who succumbed to the disease to bring the Corona toll to three were from Nairobi and Mombasa. One of the deceased was a Kenya Airways (KQ) pilot, Major (rtd) David Kibati, while the other worked at Kenya Ports Authority (KPA), Ursula Buluma.

And in a mixture of fortunes, the CS announced that Kilifi Deputy Governor Gideon Saburi, who had to be put on forced quarantine two weeks ago after failing to isolate himself, had recovered fully from the disease. The politician will be charged in court for allegedly failing to take precautions despite knowing his potential to infect others.

Saburi has been criticised for failing to adhere to a directive on 14-day self quarantine after he returned from a trip to Germany and went ahead to attend public functions in the county.

READ ALSO:   Man who defrauded Mungatana charged

“The Kilifi Deputy Governor has fully recovered after testing negative for the mandatory test three times … however, he will still be charged under the Public Health Act,” Kagwe said.

Those in quarantine were warned to adhere to social distancing with the CS cautioning some of them who are said to be loitering out of the isolation centres before the expiry of the mandatory 14 days that they were risking infection if they are negative.

The government also announced stiffer measures to deal with the disease, include observing high standards of hygiene.

Kagwe urged Kenyans to avoid mass movement from Nairobi to upcountry destinations, saying by so doing they would be endangering lives of those in the rural parts. “The only people who should be allowed to travel are those transporting food stuff,” Kagwe said.

It will also be mandatory for commuters using matatus, tuk tuk and boda bodas to wear masks at all times. The CS said the government had made arrangements for mass production of masks, which will be affordable to Kenyans.

By PD

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New faces of hope amid virus crisis, but where is Lydia?

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Brenda Ivy Cherotich and Brian Orindi have become the faces of hope as the coronavirus continues to rock Kenya and the world.

The duo, who made their first public appearance on Wednesday, were the second and the third persons to beat the virus that has so far claimed more than 47,500 lives across the globe.

The first patient to recover from Covid-19 in Kenya is a woman with both Kenyan and British citizenship, only identified as Lydia.

Unlike Brenda and Brian, Lydia’s recovery was not publicised by the Kenyan government.

Her triumph did not receive applause from President Kenyatta, Health

Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe and Kenyans at large.

But why? Sources told the Nation that Lydia, who has maintained a low profile since her discharge, was not co-operative since she was suspected of contracting the virus.

She arrived in Kenya on the same plane from London as Brenda on March 5 and landed at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport in Nairobi.

The woman is said to have initially tried to run from the Ministry of Health officials after she was identified as close contact of Brenda.

“She arrived in the country on the same flight from London as the first patient and gave the ministry a tough time when they called her to come for testing,” said the source.

READ ALSO:   Man who defrauded Mungatana charged

‘‘She lied about her location and refused to answer calls.’’ Lydia was tracked down by the National Intelligence Service (NIS) to a hotel in Nairobi and was picked up by the police.

A source who spoke to the Nation on condition of anonymity said police took her to the Kenyatta National Hospital Infectious Diseases Unit where she was tested.

After confirming she was positive, health officials looked for close to 50 contacts who came to contact with her.

Lydia was released from isolation at the Kenyatta National Hospital last week and since then efforts to reach her have been futile.

The Nation has tried on several occasions to reach her but calls and text messages have gone unanswered.

It is not clear whether Lydia travelled back to London before Kenya suspended all international flights.

47,500 The death toll from the coronavirus pandemic across the globe.

By Daily Nation

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Our love conquers all, even the fear of Covid-19, say newly- weds

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Francis Gitonga and his sweetheart Veronica Njeri will forever remember this year’s Fools Day.

That is when they chose to celebrate one of the major milestones in their lives — their wedding.

The two became the talk of town for tying the knot in a ceremony attended by only five people and that took a record 30 minutes on April 1 owing to the restrictions imposed by the government to curb the spread of the coronavirus.

As the world continues to battle the pandemic, many churches had advised their members to postpone weddings or make do with a short ceremony with few guests.

Mr Gitonga and his partner opted to continue with their wedding plans. Apart from the couple, the nuptials was attended by the best man and best maid and the officiating minister.

And with the growing number of Kenyans being infected with the virus, Mr Gitonga and his partner were not sure whether to stick to their plans for the wedding initially scheduled for April 5.

“At first, we had intended to hold our wedding on the first week of February, but when we approached our pastor at the Nyahururu Redeemed Gospel Church, we were told that another couple had already booked the date. That is when we settled for April 5,” said an elated Mr Gitonga.

READ ALSO:   Man who defrauded Mungatana charged

“Since it had been a long wait since I proposed to my lover on August 2, last year, we decided to go on with our plans even after the cancellation of public gatherings by the government last month.”

Mr Gitonga said when he approached his pastor for advice, he was informed of the requirements put in place by the government and was asked if he was ready to abide by them.

“The pastor told me that the church could only allow a gathering of five people.

That is the bride, groom the best couple and the presiding minister. He also told me that the ceremony could not take more than 30 minutes,” Mr Gitonga said.

After the meeting with the cleric, Mr Gitonga said they had only two options — either to put off the wedding plans or have a small wedding.

“Though my plans were to give her the dream wedding, we decided to continue with our plans.

“We feared that the country could go for a total lockdown and thus forcing us to wait for longer,” Mr Gitonga said.

Ms Njeri said that since they had already bought the wedding rings and the gown, she couldn’t wait for things to worsen.

“We were planning for a wedding with about 500 guests, but I was worried when the government announced the coronavirus cases in the country.

READ ALSO:   Man who defrauded Mungatana charged

“I knew there was no way the wedding could proceed according to our plans,” she said.

Ms Njeri said during their wedding day, there were no flower girls. The ceremony was held at the Nyahururu Redeemed Gospel Church.

“Only the presiding minister — my pastor — and our best couple attended the wedding.

“The best maid had to stay outside the church premises and was only allowed to come in during the signing of the certificates,” she said.

The couple was joined by a few family members after the ceremony and they accompanied them to their home in Mairo Inya township.

No honeymoon
The couple said they have no plans for a honeymoon.

Mr Gitonga said they spent very little money on their wedding.

“Some couples spend up to Sh500,000 in procuring services like outside catering, photography, seats and transport.

“Fortunately or unfortunately, ours was different as we did not spend anything close to that,” he said.

Ms Njeri said she is now happy that she is with the love of her life despite them having an unusual wedding — at least by Kenyan standards.

By Daily Nation

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