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Legal position on Mwinzi’s nomination hazy

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Mwende Mwinzi, the ambassadorial nominee for South Korea, may be waiting for the spinning coin to land so that she can know whether she will get the job, or be forced to renounce her US citizenship.

In the past, she campaigned for Kenya’s positive image abroad behind the scenes. The philanthropist, famed for her Twana Twitu Children’s Orphanage, was born in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, of Kenyan parents.

Though born in the US, she is also a Kenyan citizen as her parents were born here.

Usually, citizenship by birth cannot be revoked, but only renounced through a lengthy procedure.

But the question as to whether she should be ambassador or not may be negated by her past efforts on behalf of Kenya. Shortly after Kenya returned to normalcy after the 2007/2008 post-election violence, government bureaucrats suggested that an image-cleaning mission was needed to assure the US and other Western allies that Kenya had turned over a new leaf.

Multiple accounts by Kenyan diplomats show that part of the programme involved showing the world that Kenya was adopting a new Constitution, widening civil liberties, fronting reconciliation and that it needed tourists, as well as approval for direct flights to turn around its economy.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Diaspora returnee who holds dual Citizenship (US & Kenya) grilled by Parliament after Uhuru nominates her as ambassador

But it was also facing the issue of the International Criminal Court, where some prominent politicians had been indicted for crimes against humanity.

The first decision was to hire Washington PR firm Chlopak, Leonard, Schelchter Associates (CLS Strategies) to portray a positive image and demonstrate to the world that there was domestic legal backing to complement the ICC.

A diplomat at the Foreign ministry said Ms Mwinzi introduced the CLS group to government officials and served as the link person between Nairobi and the lobbyists.

Shadow diplomacy

CLS had signed a contract with the government in 2009, which was renewed in 2011 for it to continue lobbying, during the ICC period.

The group, in partnership with Moffet Group, a lobby founded by a former Congressman, and which focused on US-Africa policies, worked their phones to fix appointments with senior politicians in Congress to try and shift that perception.

Whether they were successful or not is debatable, but Nairobi paid about Sh400 million for their services, which included business-class travel, according to documents on the US Department of Justice website as part of legal requirement to declare foreign agents served by local firms. The documents do not list Ms Mwinzi as an associate.

In international relations circles, this type of lobbying, where embassies are bypassed in favour of image firms, is known as shadow diplomacy.

READ ALSO:   Renounce US citizenship or kiss Ambassadorial job goodbye, Mwende Mwinzi told

She had good contacts and could link up US officials with Kenyan policy deciders. The problem was that it seemed as if she was doing embassy work, which is to advance Kenya’s interests, said another official who worked at the Kenyan mission in Washington at the time but has since been transferred.

At one point, the idea of lobbyists seemed to render embassy officials redundant.

Now, with her formal nomination as an envoy, she seems to be meeting legal hurdles that escaped her before.

In 2017, she unsuccessfully ran for the Mwingi West parliamentary seat. As MPs are also State officers, the question of her dual nationality would have arisen, had she won. Part of the problem, experts say, is that the framing of the law is contradictory.

“The real problem we have is the question of Kenyans holding dual nationality. On one hand, we love their contribution through remittances while on the other, we don’t want them to hold public or State offices,” said Mr George Mucee, an immigration consultant and practice leader at Fragomen Kenya in Nairobi.

“Think about the fact that they have a right to vote, yet they cant vie for elective (or appointive) positions. We need to have a robust discussion on this issue and probably amend the Constitution, “he told the Nation.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Diaspora returnee who holds dual Citizenship (US & Kenya) grilled by Parliament after Uhuru nominates her as ambassador

During her vetting, Ms Mwinzi, 48, argued that dual nationality does not affect ambassadors, even though they may be considered State officers. She also defended her loyalty to Kenya.

“From my adulthood, everything about my life has been Kenya-bound, she said. “Every envoy is first a national, a defender, so your first mandate and only mandate is to serve the country.”

Source:Daily Nation.

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VIDEO: “Drunk” Kenyan in US faces up to 99 years in Prison ‘after killing man in wrong way vehicular homicide’

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A Kenya man faces up to 99 years in prison after he was charged with felony murder and intoxication assault on a peace officer.

Two Harris County Sheriff’s deputies were injured and the man they were taking to jail was killed when they were hit head-on by a wrong-way driver in west Harris County.

Investigators believe that wrong-way driver, who has been identified as 39-year-old Patrick Njogu, was drunk.

Authorities say Deputy C. Drake and Deputy P. Zelaya were going eastbound on the Westpark Tollway at Synott around 11:30 p.m. Sunday when Njogu slammed his Lexus into their patrol vehicle.

The deputies had left the scene of a major crash before that and were taking the 42-year-old prisoner in the backseat of the patrol unit to jail for allegedly being impaired.

Investigators spoke to the deputies who said they had little time to react. They believe Njogu was headed the wrong way on the road for more than a mile.

Sean Teare with the Harris County District Attorney’s Office says he has seen video of the collision.

“You can see the moment the two deputies go over the hill on the on-ramp as this defendant is basically exiting Westpark the wrong way,” Teare said.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Diaspora returnee who holds dual Citizenship (US & Kenya) grilled by Parliament after Uhuru nominates her as ambassador

Other drivers apparently called 911 in the moments before the crash, trying to warn authorities of the coming danger. The Harris County Toll Road Authority then located Njogu’s vehicle on camera but could not prevent the head-on collision.

Deputy Drake was driving, but he was unable to take evasive action.

“He had nowhere to go. It is an on-ramp, a one lane on-ramp. He was only able to see him for a split second before the head-on,” Teare explained.

Officials say everyone was wearing a seat belt, and they were all taken to Memorial Hermann Southwest Hospital. The prisoner died.

Deputy Drake had a broken foot, numerous bruises and cuts, and Deputy Zelaya suffered a concussion. Njogu was taken to the hospital with a broken leg.

Jeff Ehling

@JeffEhlingABC13

Two deputies are injured and a person in transport is killed after the deputy’s patrol car was struck by a wrong way driver on the Westpark tollway.

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Authorities say Njogu has five previous DWI arrests and three previous convictions in Illinois and Missouri.

Teare described Njogu as being highly intoxicated.

“He told the deputies or asked the deputies whether or not he was in the state of Missouri immediately after the crash,” Teare said.

READ ALSO:   Renounce US citizenship or kiss Ambassadorial job goodbye, Mwende Mwinzi told

Njogu had a Texas driver’s license.

According to the district attorney, as long as he had been adjudicated for the other convictions, there would be nothing that would prevent him from getting a Texas license.

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ROTICH ARREST: Uhuru set to name his replacement as Treasury CS [VIDEO]

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President Uhuru Kenyatta is set to name a replacement for Treasury Secretary Henry Rotich ans well as Principal Secretary in the same Ministry, Kamau Thugge, following their arrest on Monday. A source at the State House told ksnmedia.com that the President had made it clear to his cabinet that if any of them is charged in court over corruption, he would have to be replaced as the case is prosecuted.

“It goes without saying. The gloves are completely off and the President is ready to go the whole haul,” said the source who sought anonymity as she is not authorised to speak to the media.

Earlier this year, President Kenyatta told a joint sitting of parliament that those who will be taken to court will have to step aside.

“If you are charged in a court of law, you will be replaced,” said Kenyatta amid cheers from the lawmakers.

On Monday, the Director of Public Prosecution put out a lengthy statement, with minute details of how Kenyans were taken for a ride over dam projects whose cost was inflated to Sh63B.

Former Vice President Musalia Mudavadi is in agreement that the President should immediately name a replacement. “He has to do it even if on a temporary basis,” Mudavadi told NTV’s Kennedy Muriithi in an interview on Monday evening.

READ ALSO:   Renounce US citizenship or kiss Ambassadorial job goodbye, Mwende Mwinzi told

All eyes are now set on the presidency to see whether these statements will come to pass.

 

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Anne Kiguta pulls no punches in Ruto interview, Kenyans unimpressed

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TV anchor Anne Kiguta marked her debut on K24 TV with a no-holds-barred interview with Deputy President William Ruto on her new show ‘Punchline’.

Anne was making a comeback to TV screens after a 10-month hiatus.

Her Sunday night interview lacked the finesse of an experienced TV anchor dealing with a hostile guest.

One instance was when Anne asked Ruto about the assassination claims the Deputy President had raised with the Director of Criminal Investigations.

Anne Kiguta: Do you believe there are forces planning to kill you?

Ruto: Is this your first time to come to Karen? Do you have children?

The TV anchor also asked the DP about his net worth.

Anne Kiguta: Are you willing to declare your wealth?

Ruto: Have I told you I am not willing to declare my wealth

Kenyans on social media had this to say about the interview.

@PeterPirate95 tweeted; “#RutoOnPunchline. All of us watching kindly tell me if Ruto has answered a single question because im bored just as much as Ann Kiguta is. All the DP is doing is diverting and rushing to the next question which he still wont respond to”.

“Even BEING BAHATI REALITY show is better! Compared to what we witnessed last night. ~Ann Kiguta promised us real punches but she was knocked down with LIES,” posted @Gideon_Kitheka

READ ALSO:   Renounce US citizenship or kiss Ambassadorial job goodbye, Mwende Mwinzi told

@Margaretwmumbi said; “#RutoOnPunchline Ann Kiguta is trying too hard to look like a bold interviewer. She is exuding arrogance and even dismissive of the DP. She is listening selectively, not to understand the DP but to counter attack his responses. Ann, you need to change that.”

“The interview felt like Ruto was just having some good time at his Karen Home giving Ann Kiguta homework to take home. #RutoOnPunchline,” commented @alyedy2

“The moment ANNE KIGUTA started quoting questions from Instagram I knew we were in to real hogwash! The DP referred to media as ambassadors of FAKE NEWS & PROPAGANDA which ANN KIGUTA failed to defend, she sank so low! The show was overhyped! #RutoOnPunchline,” tweeted @Duke_Korir

By Nairobinews

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