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Amb Githae stops controversial ID issuance exercise in US Cities, says no E-passports at Embassy

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BY BMJ MURIITHI

Kenya’s ambassador to the United States, Robinson Njeru Githae, he halted the controversial ID issuance outreach program after a section of Kenyans in the US complained that the exercise was marred by corruption.

In September this year, a widely circulated social media post touched off a heated debate among Kenyan diaspora.

‘SH15,000’

The anonymous author of the post put Mr Githae at the centre of the alleged scandal, claiming he was abetting corruption at the embassy.

Through his handlers, the author claimed, Mr Githae was charging $150 (about Sh15,000) instead of the official fee of $45 (about Sh4,500) for an identity card. Kenyans living in Kansas, the author added, are required to raise at least Sh1.6 million for the embassy staff to travel to the city to issue the vital documents on October 6 and 7.

The envoy however denied the corruption claims terming them “baseless and meant to besmirch the good reputation of the embassy.”

“The information circulating around on social media has no basis in facts,” he was quoted as saying.

But on Thursday, Amb Githae said: “Because of the negative comments made over the exercise, the IDs will now only be issued at the embassy in Washington DC.”

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Amb Githae denies corruption allegations in ID, Passport issuance exercise

Meanwhile, Mr Githae has told Kenyans applying for new Passports that, contrary to popular belief, the e-passports are not being processed and that anyone who applies at the embassy will still get the old document which will need to be renewed come October 2019.

The envoy was speaking in New York Thursday during a Brand-Kenya event.

“We don’t process any passports in Washington an the e-passport machine has not arrived yet,” he said.

Watch the video courtesy of Samrack Media:

 

This is in contrast to regular statements attributed to interior Cabinet Secretary, Fred Matiang’i, painting an-all-is-well picture of the passport issuance process.

The Kenyan Embassy on R Street in Washington DC, USA. Former Finance Minister Njeru Githae is the Kenyan Ambassador to the US. PHOTO | BMJ MURIITHI

The directive to roll out the issuance of the EAC e-passport was launched during the 17th EAC Ordinary Summit of the EAC Heads of State held in Arusha Tanzania on March 2, 2016.

Ideally, were Kenya to roll out the new document as earlier projected, it would become the second EAC State to launch the e-passport after Burundi.

Currently, applications for e-passports can be done online through the e-citizen platform but the applicants will be required to present themselves in person for biometric capture at the passport issuing offices in  Nairobi.

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Man who lost wife, children in Ethiopian plane crash to testify in US

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A man who lost his wife, three children and his mother-in-law in the ET302 Ethiopian Airline crash in March this year will today testify before the congress in the US.

Mr Paul Njoroge, 34, in an interview with US media said Boeing should scrap the plane and the top executives should resign and face criminal charges.

The distraught Kenyan said Boeing should have grounded the 737 Max planes after a previous deadly crash off the Indonesian Coast in October last year, but instead they kept allowing them in the sky.

USA Today reported that Mr Njoroge said if Boeing and the Federal Aviation Administration had done their job properly, the planes would have been grounded in November last year.

“Today, I would be enjoying summer with my family, I would be playing football with my son,” the US news site quoted him.

Mr Njoroge will be the first relative of the crash victims to testify before the congress, over the crash that claimed the lives of 346 passengers when the two planes crashed in Indonesia and Bishoftu in Ethiopia.

DESIGN FLAWS

He had earlier said that the families of the passengers had several demands that they wanted met before the aircraft model is allowed to fly again, citing ‘irredeemable design flaws’

READ ALSO:   Githae ends tour of duty in Washington DC, transferred to Austria

A Chicago aviation lawyer, Robert Clifford, is sueing Boeing on Mr Njoroge’s behalf over the deaths of his wife, Carol, his son and daughters, 6-year-old Ryan, 4-year-old Kelli and 9-month-old Rubi, and his mother-in-law.

The Max was grounded worldwide shortly after that crash and it’s not clear when it will be certified to fly again.

American Airlines and United Airlines earlier this month both said they will keep the Boeing 737 Max plane off their schedule until November 3, leading to flight cancellations.

Mr Njoroge’s mother in law Anne Wangui Karanja, his wife and three children perished as they were coming home from Canada to introduce the youngest member of the family to Anne’s husband, Quindos Karanja in Kwa Amos village, Kabatini, in Bahati, Nakuru County.

Anne had been living in Canada for five months, where she had gone to help her daughter, after giving birth and had two other young children to take care of.

Source:nairobinews

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Body positivity: Kenyan celebrities who ignored body-shamers

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A number of celebrities have come forth preaching body positivity as they encourage women to love and embrace their bodies no matter what society thinks of them.

However, the internet is crawling with body-shamers who, like hyenas that have caught the scent of blood, are out to put down anyone whose body they deem unfit.

In a video shared her Instagram, media personality Lynda Nyangweso opened up about being body shamed. “Somebody called me whale,” she said in the video. “The meanest comment I ever got was that I didn’t deserve to have a child because of how I looked.

“When I was young, I would never eat in public. People would stare at me when I ate that I started eating in the toilet,” she confessed, her voice shaking as she recalled those hurtful moments.

The shaming got so bad that Lynda even contemplated suicide: “The only reason I didn’t go through with the suicide was because I worried that my mum wouldn’t find a coffin that fit me.”

Like Lynda, some celebrities have not let this cyber-bullying get to them. They are unashamed to wear what they like, take photos and even share them on social media all in an effort to put the shamers to shame.

READ ALSO:   Amb Amayo to hold both NY and Washington DC portfolios after Githae's exit

“My sadness is for other girls who have to go through this,” Lynda says.

“If I was to meet a bully I would show kindness. Stop following people who make you feel bad about yourself. Protect your peace,” she concludes.

Source:SDE

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Man loses leg in attack by hyena

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A middle-aged man from Kyeleni village has lost his right leg after being mauled by a hyena on Monday night. Sources indicate the man, now admitted to Kangundo Level 4 Hospital, encountered the beast on his way home from a local shopping center.

He was later rescued by passers-by who rushed to the scene of the attack after he unleashed frantic screams.It is suspected that the beast strayed from Mt Kilimambogo’s Ol Donyo Sabuk National Reserve.

Kenya Wildlife Service officer, Polycarp Okuku who confirmed the incident said the victim was in a stable condition.

“The patient is recuperating in the hospital where he was rushed for treatment. Members of the public should report any wild animals they see in their neighbourhoods so that KWS can take necessary action to avert incidents such as this,” said Okuku

By Standard

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Amb Githae denies corruption allegations in ID, Passport issuance exercise
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