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VIDEO: Here is why CNN has sued Trump in unprecedented move

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BY BMJ MURIITHI

Giant American Media House Cable News Network (CNN) has made good its threat and filed  an unprecedented lawsuit against President Trump and his administration, seeking the immediate restoration of its chief White House correspondent Jim Acosta’s access to the White House.

The lawsuit is in response to the White House’s suspension of Acosta’s press pass, known as a Secret Service “hard pass,” last week. The suit alleges that Acosta and CNN’s First and Fifth Amendment rights are being violated by the ban.

According to CNN Spokeswoman, the suit was filed in U.S. District Court in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday morning.

“CNN filed a lawsuit against the Trump Administration this morning in DC District Court,” the statement read. “It demands the return of the White House credentials of CNN’s Chief White House correspondent, Jim Acosta. The wrongful revocation of these credentials violates CNN and Acosta’s First Amendment rights of freedom of the press, and their Fifth Amendment rights to due process. We have asked this court for an immediate restraining order requiring the pass be returned to Jim, and will seek permanent relief as part of this process.”

But in a quick rejoinder, soon after CNN went public with the action it is taking, White House let out a terse statement indicating its resolve to defend its position.  White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said that CNN is “grandstanding” by suing and that the Trump administration  will “vigorously defend” itself.

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CNN also asserted that other news organizations could have been targeted by the Trump administration this way, and could be in the future.

“While the suit is specific to CNN and Acosta, this could have happened to anyone,” the network said. “If left unchallenged, the actions of the White House would create a dangerous chilling effect for any journalist who covers our elected officials.”

There are six defendants: Trump, chief of staff John Kelly, press secretary Sarah Sanders, deputy chief of staff for communications Bill Shine, Secret Service director Joseph Clancy, and the Secret Service officer who took Acosta’s hard pass away last Wednesday. The officer is identified as John Doe in the suit, pending his identification.

The six defendants are all named because of their roles in enforcing and announcing Acosta’s suspension

and both CNN and Acosta are plaintiffs in the lawsuit.

CNN wrote a letter to the White House on Friday formally requesting the immediate reinstatement of Acosta’s pass and warning of a possible lawsuit, but the Trump administration has remained adamant.

In a statement on Tuesday morning, CNN said it is seeking a preliminary injunction as soon as possible so that Acosta can return to the White House right away, and a ruling from the court preventing the White House from revoking Acosta’s pass in the future.

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The White House accused Acosta of placing his hands on an intern who was trying to take a microphone away from him during a press conference.

In the current suit, CNN Worldwide chief counsel David Vigilante is joined by two prominent attorneys, Ted Boutrous and Theodore Olson to represent the Media organisation.

According to CNN, Acosta is on a previously scheduled vacation this week. He declined to comment on the lawsuit.

Here is the full statement issued by the White House press secretary Sarah Sanders on Tuesday:

“We have been advised that CNN has filed a complaint challenging the suspension of Jim Acosta’s hard pass. This is just more grandstanding from CNN, and we will vigorously defend against this lawsuit.

CNN, who has nearly 50 additional hard pass holders, and Mr. Acosta is no more or less special than any other media outlet or reporter with respect to the First Amendment. After Mr. Acosta asked the President two questions—each of which the President answered—he physically refused to surrender a White House microphone to an intern, so that other reporters might ask their questions. This was not the first time this reporter has inappropriately refused to yield to other reporters.
The White House cannot run an orderly and fair press conference when a reporter acts this way, which is neither appropriate nor professional. The First Amendment is not served when a single reporter, of more than 150 present, attempts to monopolize the floor. If there is no check on this type of behavior it impedes the ability of the President, the White House staff, and members of the media to conduct business.”

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The White House Correspondents’ Association also released a statement Tuesday about CNN’s lawsuit against President Trump.

WHCA President Oliver Knox said the association “strongly supports CNN’s goal of seeing their correspondent regain a US Secret Service security credential that the White House should not haven taken away in the first place.”

 

 

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Lifestyle

From a seven-figure hustle to almost selling my shoes to survive

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“You have to be aware of the narrative that runs your life and sometimes, be willing to go back to zero to rewrite it,” says photographer Barbara Minishi.

“In 2016, I was forced to do just that, when it struck me that I couldn’t sustain the life I was living anymore. More importantly, I didn’t have to. I had nothing to prove to anyone.”Barbara, 39, came into photography in the early 2000s when she discovered she felt alive behind the lens.

Following her passion led her to work on magazine covers, fashion shoots, films and celebrity portraits with public figures like Martha Karua, Fareed Khimani, Pinky Ghelani and Misiko Andere.

She was featured in Al Jazeera’s docu-series, New African Photography, following her iconic project, The Red Dress Project, celebrating the diversity and commonality of women.

Despite all these accolades, like many talents in Kenya and indeed the African continent, translating the arts into a meaningful livelihood has been a challenging path for the photographer.In a candid conversation with Hustle, she describes balancing passion, art and life.

What was your path into photography?

It all started when I was holding my camera one day and it just hit me, you know the way you’ve been friends with someone for a while and then one day you look at them and realise how much you love them? Like that, it hit me, this is what I’m meant to do, tell stories through my pictures.

So I became curious, knocked on a lot of doors. In a random conversation, I was asked by Carol Wahome, a stylist, to help her with styling on a True Love shoot. It turned out that the photographer’s assistant hadn’t showed up to work. Since I had some free time, I offered to help him. I didn’t know much in terms of professional photography, but I guess my passion shown through, because he invited me to do other jobs with him.Before I knew it, I was working on fashion spreads, magazine covers and portraits.

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What makes a good photographer?

Slowing down. You have to slow down. In photography the impulse is to frame and shoot, but if you really want to capture a moment, you have to first understand what you’re looking at and see it, not just through your eyes, but through the eyes of your subject.Let’s talk about money; it seems to be a universal challenge for artists in Kenya. Why is that?

Speaking from my own experience, when it came to projects, my challenge with money resulted from me not asking for help or bringing on others with expertise in investments and sponsorships.I had a similar experience with another great project, the Red Dress Project, where I got to work with Martha Karua, but even that didn’t reach the heights I had envisioned. The project was covered in a documentary by Al Jazeera, but I had to stop it mid-stream because funds run out.

Weren’t the projects bringing in money?

Between 2009 – 2013, I had made a very comfortable life as a photographer, having done projects with budgets of up to $15,000 (Sh1.5m). On average, I was bringing in approximately Sh200,000 a month. But after 2013, particularly when Media 24 wrapped up, things changed and work dried up.By 2016 I was struggling. I moved out of my four-bedroom house and sold everything.

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In 2017, I almost sold my camera equipment. It was bad at that time, I remember selling off my shoes to buy food.

What do you now know that you didn’t?

That I can’t do it all alone. Collaborations are integral. When working on something that could benefit from investors and sponsorships, I should seek them out. I went it alone and run out of money.Also, one should not be trying to keep up with the Joneses. Don’t live for others or the image of who they think you should be. And when the hard times hit as an entrepreneur, adjust living and operating standards accordingly, without worrying what others will think or say of you. Or your status.During the good times, when an artist/ entrepreneur is enjoying success, what should they do?The good times are about owning your craft and accolades. I used to stay in the shadow behind my camera because I thought it was the modest thing to do. But then I missed out on making some great connections and networks, yet I had access to all these people. So step up and don’t shy away. If you are great at what you do, you are great. Own it.

What keeps one going in those dark moments?

You know, I believe its during the dark nights of the soul that you get the fertiliser you need to project you into your new cycle, but you have to allow yourself to connect with your truth. If you do that, everything eventually comes together.For me, that’s my current project, The 13th Path.

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And what is the 13th Path?

I believe everyone has a life path that’s unique to them, because we all see the world slightly differently. The 13th Path is an autobiography, it’s therapy, healing and connection.  That’s what The 13th Path is about; a multi-media project, using pictures, film and words to portray the human journey and the cycles of life.

What do you want to do with the project once it’s complete?

Ultimately, I’d like an exhibition and a book. But I’m also open to whatever shows up because I’ve learned not to fight the flow, but to trust it is getting you to exactly where you need to be, and you’re going to be okay.

Are you okay?

Yes. I feel such an overwhelming sense of joy, contentment and satisfaction. Not because everything is perfect, but because I am in my element.I get to engage with the world, connect with people, embody my talents and use them. I am in my truth, and I am blessed to be in this space.

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Education

Community wants Baringo mother refund atheists’ funds

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The family of a needy student in Baringo County has welcomed the support of Atheists despite pressure from residents opposing the funding from the Godless.

A WhatsApp group which was used as a fundraising platform split and collapsed after realising the Atheist in Kenya Society had also offered to help pay for the boy’s high school fees.The contribution was aimed at helping Idriss Saidi Lutta whose family could not afford the required fees that would see him join Maranda High School.

Lutta was a student at Emining Primary School and emerged the best in Mogotio Sub-County, Baringo, after getting 401 out of 500 marks in the 2019 Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KCSE) exams.

His parent, Lilian Ayabei, is a single mother of four who sells vegetable to earn a living.A section of people in the group took an issue with the Atheists’ lack of belief in God asking the family to refund the atheists their money.

The society had cleared Lutta’s first term fees of Sh27, 000 and pledged to support him throughout his secondary school education.

“Sasa familia ikifanya hivyo, mtoto atasoma vipi na kwasababu hatujachanga pesa ya kutosha ya kusomesha mtoto,” said Lutta’s primary school class teacher madam Zipporah Rono.

The community had raised Sh52,000 for Lutta and according to Madam Rono, contributions from members have stalled since the atheists pledged to support the student throughout his secondary education.

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“This is a very delicate situation. The community wants the family to refund the atheists their money yet there is no assurance we will raise Lutta’s fee in full. On the other hand, the atheists have offered to support Lutta until form four,” said Ms Rono.

According to Rono, Lutta’s mother only wants to see her son in school regardless of where the money comes from.

“Why don’t we vet money being contributed in churches every weekend? Someone might be evil but hiding under Christianity. Yet, we always accept their help because we give them a benefit of doubt that they are doing it for the good,” said Ms Rono.

The single mother of four was left with a tough choice between heeding to the community’s pressure to refund the money and accepting the atheists’ help which would probably upset her community.After an informed understanding of the non-believers, Ayabei told Standard that she welcomes the society’s help as long as they have no plans to recruit Lutta into atheism.

“This is in the best interest of my son’s education. We have already counselled Lutta and cautioned him to shun anyone who would ask him to convert into atheism because of this favour,” she said.Lutta reported to Maranda Thursday last week with the escort of Madam Rono.

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Where it all started         

Last week Harrison Mumia, the President of the Atheist Society of Kenya, announced that the society had cleared Lutta’s first term fees and was committed to helping him throughout his secondary education.

Atheists in Kenya (AIK) president Harrison Mumia during a past interview. [File, Standard]

Before the announcement, Mumia was added to the group by Ms Rono.Upon realising his low-key presence in the group, a section of the members started lashing out at him, accusing him of having a hidden agenda against Lutta.

Madam Rono, the group’s inceptor, was not spared either as some members accused her of conspiring with the Atheists to raise funds for Lutta’s education.

Mumia was left defending the society’s contribution urging the members to embrace differences in beliefs.“Irrespective of our beliefs, we are all human. The air you breathe is the same air I breathe. When my brother is in need and I can help, I will help,” he said replying to the agitated group members.

He added: “I want all of us to be accommodative and realise we cannot be all the same. But when one suffers we must put our beliefs aside and help.”The community members were against the Mumia-led kind gesture insinuating that the atheists want to convert Lutta to atheism.

Mumia, however, maintained that the organisation had no such intention and was helping because it is the humane thing to do.

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“I am only interested in educating Idriss. He is bright and must complete his education. The Atheist in Kenya Society will help him achieve his dream” he posted in the group.Contrary to earlier reports that Mumia was unceremoniously ejected from the group, he left on his own after realising that the group members were uncomfortable with his presence.

Ms Rono told Standard Digital that she was forced to shut down the group due to “negative energy” which stalled the contribution after Mumia’s atheism came to light.

BY Standard Digital

 

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Courts

State seeks to seize luxury cars from gold scam suspect, Jared Otieno

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By JUDITH GICOBI

A case filed by the Asset Recovery Agency (ASA) wants to reposes the vehicles that Jared Otieno has on the basis that he could not have bought the vehicles legally since he does not have a legitimate source of income. 

“The respondent is part of an international syndicate which has been in existence since 2012, fraudulently obtaining from investors monies on the pretense that they have precious metals including gold,” the document filed before the Anti-Corruption Court read in part.

It continues: “The respondent has no source of legitimate income and has been filing nil returns with the Kenya Revenue Authority since 2014 to date, which is the period the said motor vehicles were acquired.”

The vehicles in question are Porsche Panamera GTS and a Bentley Continental GT.

An investigator, Jeremiah Matipei, believes Jared has hidden the ownership of one of the cars by registering it under Yugni Holdings Ltd.

A search at the registry shows that Otieno owns a fifty percent stake at the company while the other partners, Mary Anyango and John Kaisa, owns twenty-five percent each. 

“The transactions depict a scheme of money laundering meant to conceal, hide and disguise the source and usage of funds contrary to the provisions of the Proceeds of Crime and Anti-Money Laundering Act,” said Mr Matipei.

According to the assets recovery body the vehicles were paid for in installments. They are valued at Ksh45 million for the Bentley and Ksh 30 million for the Porsche. 

READ ALSO:   US Ambassador to UN Nikki Haley quits
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