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The promise Uhuru made in Anne Waiguru’s village



When President Uhuru Kenyatta visited Gichugu Constituency in Kirinyaga County on September 6, 2014, to attend the homecoming party of the then Devolution Cabinet Secretary Anne Mumbi Waiguru, he pledged to have one of the major roads which passes through the rich agricultural area tarmacked.

That pledge has returned to haunt him about five years down the line, as the Sh1.5 billion  Kianyaga-Githure-Kibugu road is still in a deplorable state.

While attending the traditional wedding of Ms Waiguru, now the Kirinyaga governor, the President noted on Saturday that the road is yet to be revamped.

“I promised that this very road would be tarmacked but it has not been done. People of Kirinyaga, I know a promise is a debt. I owe you a debt and it must be paid,” he said at Kiamugumo Primary School where the ceremony took place.

President Kenyatta explained how the tender was awarded to a contractor who failed to do the job and he was chased away.

“We cancelled the contract because he was incompetent. We have now given the job to another contractor of international standards and I have instructed him to ensure the project is completed in one year,” he said to loud applause.

He added that the road will be constructed properly so residents have an easy time with their dairy, coffee and tea farming activities.

READ ALSO:   Waiguru impeached

During the home coming celebration, it was Ms Waiguru who informed the President that the road was impassable and urged him to intervene.

She told Mr Kenyatta that for more than 50 years, residents of the remote Kiamugumo village, where she was born and raised, had never had a presidential visit.

“Your Excellency, it is true we have not hosted a head of State for the last 50 years. That is why our village has no single tarmacked road. The village is landlocked and it is usually difficult for farmers to deliver their tea, coffee and other agricultural produce to the market for sale,” she said then.

She noted that the people were hardworking but had a difficult time going about their business activities.

The last time the village, whose challenges are not limited to poor road networks, hosted a sitting President was in 1964 when Kenya became a republic.

The founding father Mzee Jomo Kenyatta toured the village but never returned.

Former Presidents Mwai Kibaki, who always enjoyed the residents’ overwhelming support during elections. and Daniel arap Moi, who led the country for 24 years, both retired without touring the village which has produced top government officials and shrewd politicians.

The lack of presidential visits explains why hundreds of Kiamugumo residents were excited when President Kenyatta arrived on Saturday, attended Ms Waiguru and city lawyer Kamotho Waiganjo’s wedding and addressed them.

READ ALSO:   Jubilee rigged me out, ex- Kirinyaga governor Ndathi says

They turned up in large numbers to welcome and catch a glimpse of the most powerful man in Kenya, majority saying they had never seen a sitting President since they were born.

Some were overheard shouting that their prayers had been heard and thanking the governor for holding occasions big enough for the President to attend.

The residents observed that although the area has a very good climate and rich agricultural soils, it is the least developed in Gichugu when it terms to roads. Rains render the roads impassable due to mud.

At the time of Ms Waiguru’s homecoming ceremony, a large convoy of cars that leaders travelled in to meet the President got stuck in mud and had to be pushed out by residents.

In her address, Ms Waiguru told the President that nobody in his position had ever visited the village for an understanding of how the people lived.

She said the area had escaped the attention of various Kenyan Presidents, thereby remaining undeveloped.

Ms Waiguru said at that time that she was happy to see the President around as that meant their problems would be solved.

In response, President Kenyatta admitted that the roads were in a bad state and promised that they would be improved.

READ ALSO:   Stop insulting Uhuru, Waiguru tells Tangatanga MPs

But when he returned on Saturday, the roads leading to the school were dusty.

Kiamugumo residents, who largely voted for Mr Kenyatta in the 2013 and 2017 general elections, will be waiting to see whether he will fulfill his promise.

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Court postpones case against Sonko’s impeachment




The Labour Court has suspended the temporary issued over half a year ago to have Nairobi’s governor Mike Sonko impeached.

On Friday, justice made the decision after disbanding an initial report filed former Nairobi county assembly speaker Beatrice Elachi.

Elachi sought to have Mike Sonko relieved of his duties at Nairobi’s county boss.

In her argument, Elachi said that there was no employer-employee relationship between the governor and members of the county assembly.

She added that such a relationship didn’t give the governor the mandate to determine any arising dispute.

Elachi further stated that the case breaches the basic principle of law that states all government entities should not encroach on each other since they are separate.

Additionally, the former speaker stated that the governor’s case was against the law as it abused the entire court process.

Justice Ongaya, however, ruled that the governor didn’t have to create an employee-employer relationship with ward representatives.

He added that impeachment is a disciplinary process for removing a person from the office which is a function of human resource.

Therefore, it is within the realms of the Constitution and Statutory provisions.

Additionally, the judge said Sonko’s case was within Constitutional and Statutory jurisdiction that can decline issues pertaining to labour relations and employment.

READ ALSO:   Senate Committee acquits Waiguru, says impeachment charges unsubstantiated

Also, section 12(2) of the Employment Labour Relations Court Act, 2011 it’s okay for a case to be filed in court against or by any institution under the written law.

Additionally, the Act allows the court to determine disputes against people working as either employers or employees.

On his part, Ongwaya said proceeding with the case didn’t mean he was undermining the comity of the three government arms.

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Uhuru warns boda boda riders against being used by politicians for personal gains




President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday the 23rd of October oversaw the signing of a grand deal between capital markets authority, Boda Boda Safety Association of Kenya (BAK) an investment firm and an oil marketer.

The head of state further gave the riders some financial advice on how to scale and become rich.

Uhuru also encouraged the bodaboda riders to work hard so that they can achieve their goals.

“Boda boda industry is a sleeping giant that needs to be awakened, which is why the boda boda investment scheme is a great idea.

“Every individual should take pride in paying the price for what they want. If you do not pay the price, someone will pay to misuse you,” Uhuru said.

President Uhuru further questioned why some Boda Boda riders are poor despite the industry raking a staggering ksh 27 billion monthly.

According to him, the industry earns more than what the Government gives counties yearly.

“Every year, in totality, the boda boda industry makes ksh 357 billion. Boda boda association if together, would make more than what the government gives to the 47 counties.

“If you collect almost ksh1 billion every day, why does every boda boda rider cry of poverty?” Uhuru questioned.

READ ALSO:   Jubilee rigged me out, ex- Kirinyaga governor Ndathi says

“The boda boda sector supports, directly or indirectly, 5.2 million kenyans which accounts for 10% of the population. This means that one in every ten kenyans makes his livelihood because of the business that you do,” he added

The head of state also cautioned the riders against accepting influence from political forces.

According to him, the riders should unite and work hard to visualize their dreams.

“If the working life of a boda boda is ten years after which he joins another sector, then this scheme offers a safe landing for him outside the said industry. My government is in full support of this association.

“My advice is to tell you to leverage your numbers.. look at things not in an individual aspect, but in a collective point of view. At times you’ll have to make unpopular decisions hence the reason why I came with a lean team. But always think of yourselves first and be careful not to be swindled based on political grounds.”

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Why we built and turned our house into a resort



When architect Dorothy Abonyo’s husband, architect Erastus Abonyo, received a call that the beach plot they had been looking for had been found in Sakwa, Siaya, they were elated.

The land had been standing idle for many years and snubbed by potential buyers because of the many bushes around it, but they saw the potential in it. “When my husband asked us (his family) what we thought about the piece of land, and suggested how we could use it, we were sold out. We loved the scenery and the fact that it was on the shores of Lake Victoria,” narrates Dorothy.

With the go ahead from his family, the land was bought in 2016 and they began clearing the bushes and fixing the road to the land. In 2017, the family comprising of four, all architects, began the process of designing and building their dream house on the land.

“I am an architect with my own practice, Tekto consult, my husband and our first- born child are architects. Our second born is studying interior design and architecture abroad. The house was designed by our first born, Teddy Abonyo, who was then a final year student,” says Dorothy, who has been practicing architecture for about 30 years.

READ ALSO:   Stop insulting Uhuru, Waiguru tells Tangatanga MPs

Shared responsibility

To them, building the house was a small project that they felt their son could handle. Dorothy came in to strengthen the design and add a few details and her husband did a lot of work in the initial stages, such as fencing and setting up structures where people could sleep in. Dorothy, who became the senior architect to the project, opted to stay and oversee the process of building the home.

“It was frustrating supervising the project while living in Nairobi where I work. Every time I came to check on the progress of the project, I would find workers have messed things up, which meant we had to start all over again. So I decided to stay and oversee the project by myself and when I took a break, I would close the entire site until I came back,” she narrates.

Low business as a result of the 201 7 elections that year also allowed Dorothy extra time to focus on the project. And in 2018, the three-bedroom house was completed. It was constructed with as much natural materials as they could find in the area.

For instance, the pebbles they used on the exteriors of the house were mostly picked from their land while the rest were harvested from their neighbour’s land. Nyanza being a relatively hot place, the house was designed with thick walls that shield the interior from heat penetration. “When you have thin walls, heat goes in easily. We used cladding, which is attaching a layer of stones outside of a house to safeguard it from the weather effects. With the two thick walls, it will take a long time for the heat to penetrate,” Dorothy explains.

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The house was meant to be their retirement home, but they changed their mind after realising that the beauty and the set up spoke more and decided to share it with the public.

“We gave it a second thought and opted not to just have this place to ourselves as our boys were now old. Our second born is out of the country, he may or may not come back and is too old to even want to live with us. The last born too is on his way out meaning that it’s just me and my husband, so we decided to make it a holiday home,” she shares.

Getting into hospitality

That’s how their retirement home became a beautiful resort. Having come from the construction industry, the family knew nothing in hospitality except what they had experienced during their travels. “We have also travelled a bit and in particular, my trip in two cruises one at west Mediterranean cruise with the royal Caribbean for seven days in water really made me learn a bit on hospitality. Though we were over 5,000 guests, the staff took care of us as if we were five guests and there was no one time that we went to the restaurant and missed food. Their service, unlike other hotels I had been to, was superb,” she recalls.

READ ALSO:   Jubilee rigged me out, ex- Kirinyaga governor Ndathi says

Having unanimously decided that their home would be turned into a resort, the family came together to name it. Dorothy’s choice, Pi Kidi, won. Pi means water in the Luo, while Kidi meant the stones. The area too was green and lush, so it also functions as a garden resort.

“Not many people were comfortable with the fact that you can share your home with strangers, but it’s a new trend, they have eventually gotten used to it. The boys then came up with the idea of putting up tents saying that their age mates would fancy that. So we set up a campsite that’s pretty formal, but we are also thinking of opening up the bush for people who are more adventurous and just want to camp by the water or in the bush,” Dorothy adds.


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