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Why was Amina ‘demoted’ as CSs mentioned in mega scandals were spared?



President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday fired a warning shot at his Cabinet when he booted Sports Cabinet secretary (CS) Rashid Echesa, alongside Broadcasting and Telecommunication Principal Secretary (PS) Fatuma Hirsi.

Coming a day after talking tough about impending high-profile arrests, the President’s Executive Order No3 of 2019 also re-assigned six PSs, as the storm over runaway graft in ministries hit an all-time high this week.

And as Kenyans demanded more blood in the Cabinet, Uhuru added stock to his Cabinet bulldozers, promoting the no-nonsense chairman of the Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec), Prof George Magoha, to the position of Education CS.

CS Amina Mohamed, whose tenure at the Education docket has been characterised by one misstep after another, was relegated to the Sports docket vacated by Echesa.

But it is the last-minute intrigues leading to the announcement of the executive order that saved the day for a number of CSs implicated in recent graft probes.

An early meeting between the President and his Deputy William Ruto at State House is said to have slowed the move against five other CSs whose fates are hanging on a thread. “The argument from one of the sides was that sacking them without evidence could amount to witch-hunt.

It would also subject them to a public lynch mob. But the die was cast when one side posed where the lynch mob will stop at once encouraged with immature sackings,” a source privy to the meeting said.The State House meeting was also attended by Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua. The DP arrived for the meeting as early as 6am.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Uproar as Uhuru sacks all women CSs, including Amina Mohamed

The President is reported to have heeded to the concerns and called for intelligence report on the affected CSs, whose ministries have dominated the headlines lately over questionable contracts and transactions that saw Kenyan taxpayers lose billions of shillings. “The President reportedly called National Intelligence Service (NIS) director Philip Kameru to ask for the report on them.

The NIS report was not ready, and that is how the five kept their jobs, at least for now,” disclosed another source within the Presidency. The sources hinted that the CSs are not off the hook yet.“A new executive order is being worked on.

The release date has not been indicated,” the Saturday Standard was informed.Without mentioning names, the Saturday Standard can authoritatively confirm that the CSs who survived the purge yesterday manage ministries that have been in the spotlight for various omissions, graft and delayed initiation and implementation of flagship projects and the Big Four Agenda.

In the executive order number three, the President directed that his government shall be reorganised as stated. “That the portfolio responsibilities and changes in the structure of government set out in the order shall come into immediate effect and the Executive Order No.1 of 2018 (nominated and reassigning the Cabinet) is hereby further amended accordingly,” read the President’s Order.

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Early this month, at a Cabinet meeting when the President warned CSs against engaging in politics, he did not have kind words for Echesa, signalling the beginning of his exit journey.

Sources say the President in particular directed his anger at the CS who had been engaging with local leaders in a war of words in their support for the DP.“Echesa was told he is not a Luhya CS. There is no docket for Luhya affairs,” the Saturday Standard reported.The official reasons for the sacking of Echesa and Hirsi was not communicated.

The PSs reshuffled include Peter Tum (Labour), Ali Noor Ismail (Cooperatives), Dr Ibrahim Mohammed (Environment and Forestry), Margaret Mwakima (East African Community Affairs (EAC)) and Dr Susan Koech (Wildlife).

The president could however not delay the sacking of Echesa over an ongoing investigation by the director of the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) George Kinoti.

He flexed his muscle after he told Kenyans to brace for high-profile prosecutions, guaranteeing that there will be no sacred cows.The President’s announcement is however a total departure from the past, when he would emerge from State House to address the media, side by side with his deputy.

In 2013, they were even clad in similar white shirts, folded sleeves and red ties, accompanied by the nominees. With time, the funfair seems to have fizzled out as they keep off the media glare and appear to be rekindling the late Mzee Jomo Kenyatta’s and retired Presidents Mwai Kibaki and Daniel arap Moi’s leadership styles of announcing changes in the Cabinet.

READ ALSO:   CS Amina Mohamed orders school to re-admit Rastafarian Girl

War on graft

Kenyatta has reaffirmed his total confidence in Kinoti and the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Noordin Haji, lauding them for a good job done and assured Kenyans that the new war on graft will rid the country of the vice.Senate Minority Leader James Orengo recently called on the President to deal decisively with graft in his government. “I am beginning to have a feeling that the fifth government is getting a little weak in dealing with some of the problems

When you want to kill a viper, you do not go for its tail. Other countries have demonstrated how to do this when they have had problems like this, by dealing with the problem directly,” said Orengo.He said a time had come for the President to change strategy if he wanted to deal with grand corruption.“If you read the report on the maize crisis in the Senate, keenly analyse the dam scandal, and if you look at other scandals that relate to waste of public resources and embezzlement, all the roads seem to lead towards one headquarters,” said the Siaya senator.


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Banda School told to improve hygiene



The Banda School, an elite learning institution in Nairobi, has been put on the spot over its failure to adhere to basic hygiene regulations.

The National Environment Management Authority (Nema) has since warned that failure by the school to adhere to set regulations will have consequences.

Officials from Nema’s Nairobi office visited the school and directed the management, led by Mr George Githui, to implement several recommendations.

The school, which is situated on Magadi Road, 500 students.

Among the concerns raised by Nema is the lack of an environmental impact assessment report which expired on February 21, 2018.

“(An) Effluent treatment plant is in place but [it is] not treating effluent to the set standards and discharging grey and blackish discharge into environment and storm drain on Magadi Road,” reads the notice sent to the school dated May 17.

The environmental watchdog is also concerned that water analysis reports do not meet the set standards as laid out in the water quality regulations of 2006.

“Evidence of some waste management records in place but some missing (contracts, licences and tracking documents),” reads the report by inspectors Regina Kio and Veronica Maina.

The school has since been directed to immediately stop any further processing of waste which leads to discharge into environment.

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The international school is required to install a properly working effluent treatment plant within 7 days.

The school’s management also appeared before Nema on Tuesday.

The management is also required to liaise with relevant authorities to address the concerns raised by Nema, failure to which officers at the institution will be prosecuted.

“You have a right to appeal to the national environment tribunal if aggrieved by the order,” reads the notice.

On Tuesday, Mr Githui said the institution is doing everything possible to implement the Nema directives.

Mr Githui said Nema has already inspected the school and held discussions with the management.

“We have committed ourselves to do as per the recommendations,” said the manager.

The institution is one of the most expensive schools in the country and charges a pupil Sh1.5 million a year.


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Canadian agency warns about Visa fraudsters



Kenyans are losing up to Sh2.15 million per person to well organised fraudsters selling fake Visa’s to Canada and non-existent job offers to Kenyan job-seekers, an international agency that processes the travel documents, warned on Monday.

The scheme has been targeting not only low income households seeking greener pastures abroad but the very wealthy, the agency warned in a statement.

The scammers net about Sh150 million from conning about 150 people, in about two or three months.

Beaver Immigration Consulting said the scams have left a trail of devastation among the hundreds of the affected.

Mr Nicholas Avramis a regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant with Beaver Immigration Consulting said the agency is now “frustrated” from the mounting incidents of fraud under the scheme.

“I am very frustrated as I continue to get calls from people that have been scammed. This is a global problem with Canadian immigration in general. It is prevalent in India and China, but now the fraudsters are moving into the African region to rip people off,” said Mr Avramis.

According to him, the scam works in two main ways.

“The first is where the fraudster promises to obtain a visa to enter Canada and work. Essentially, an open work permit. This, does not exist for people outside of Canada,” he explained.

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In another the scammers claim that they can find the victim a job, by securing a letter of employment from a Canadian company.

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Mumbi Girls matron of 33 years found dead, hanging in her sitting room



Mumbi Girls High School in Murang’a County where the body of the institution's was found in her house on May 21, 2019. It is suspected that she committed suicide. PHOTO | NDUNG'U GACHANE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

A matron at Mumbi Girls High School in Murang’a County has been found dead in a case of suspected suicide.

Murang’a County Police Commander Josephat Kinyua told the Nation that the matron’s body was discovered Tuesday morning in her house in the living quarters situated within the school compound.

He said they have launched investigations to establish the cause of death of the 56-yaer-old woman.

“The principal of the school informed the police that they have discovered the body of the school matron identified as Joyce Mwinzi and we have sent officers to the school to collect the body and to start investigations,” Mr Kinyua said.

The body was found hanging in her sitting room on Tuesday morning by the school’s groundsman and a librarian after her husband called them asking about her whereabouts.

According to the school’s principal, Esther Njeri Wambugu, the matron did not report to work on Monday as it was her off day and was supposed to visit her husband in Gatanga Sub-County.

When she failed to show up at their home, her husband called the school’s workers who decided to check on her, only to find her body dangling in the sitting room.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Uproar as Uhuru sacks all women CSs, including Amina Mohamed

Ms Wambugu said the matron had worked at the school for 33 years and that she never showed any signs of depression or related illness.

“She has worked in the school for 33 years in different departments and had been giving wise counsel to the girls. I last saw her on Saturday during the school’s prize giving ceremony and she looked jovial and even completed her work as assigned,” the worried principal said.

She added that the matron attended students on Sunday night at 10pm who complained of stomach ache, saying that was her last encounter with the students.

The matron’s husband also worked as a cook at the school but retired at the beginning of this year.

The county police boss lamented over the increased cases of suicides in Murang’a and pleaded with locals to seek better ways of solving their issues instead of committing suicide.

There was tension at the school on Tuesday mid-morning as police officers visited the scene to pick her body.

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