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LATEST IMMIGRATION NEWS: US Visa Applicants must show they can afford Health Care while in the country – Trump

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Immigrants hoping to find a place to the US will need to have an additional source of funding now if they want to get their visa.

The White House issued a presidential proclamation on Friday night requiring many visa applicants to show they can afford health care. This latest move  by the Trump administration could make it harder for poor migrants to enter the U.S.

The proclamation comes days after the 2021 Diversity Visa period opened.

READ RELATED: US DV2021 Visa lottery registration period opens

According to Wall Street Journal, the action, which is set to take effect in 30 days, would require applicants, including people with ties to family members in the U.S., to show they have health insurance or prove their financial ability to pay for medical care before being issued a visa that could lead to a green card.

“President Trump has taken action to promote immigrant self-sufficiency, which has long been a fundamental aspect of our immigration system,” the proclamation said.

The move marks the latest effort by President Trump to restrict immigrants’ ability to enter the U.S.

NPR reported that the administration is poised to implement a rule this month that would require many of the same applicants to demonstrate that they wouldn’t become reliant on public benefits including Medicaid should they be allowed to immigrate to the U.S.

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US media outlets also reported that the new requirement would take a further step, requiring anyone looking to move to the U.S. to enroll in private insurance—including as a dependent on a family member’s health plan—or possess the financial means to cover significant medical costs.

White House said it was taking the additional step to safeguard the health-care system for American citizens by preventing immigrants from enrolling in Medicaid or going to emergency rooms with no insurance, requiring hospitals or taxpayers to cover the cost.

The new requirement will potentially affect hundreds of thousands of people moving to the U.S. each year on immigrant visas.

According to data released by the State Department, during the the 2018 fiscal year, the U.S. issued a total of roughly 534,000 visas, which is a 4.6% decline from the previous year’s total.

Although the U.S. issues about 1.1 million green cards a year, the process has become more complicated during Trump’s time in office, forcing people issued with immigrant visas to wait for years in backlogs before they are granted permanent resident status.

READ ALSO:   US Government announces date for Diversity Visa DV 2021 registration commencement

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Why I grow my moringa inside a greenhouse

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Some two kilometres from Soy trading centre in Aligula, Likuyani, Kakamega County, Nelson Njuguna runs a moringa farm.

He grows the crop inside a greenhouse tucked in a section of his 30-acre family farm, with the rest hosting maize and beans, the dominant crops in the region.

The 8m-by-15m structure hosts 500 moringa plants, as he planted 700 but 200 died.
“Most people assume that you can only grow tomatoes or capsicum in a greenhouse, but here is the proof that moringa also does well in the structure,” says the 50-year-old farmer.

He developed interest in the crop in 2014 when he met an exhibitor at the Eldoret Agricultural Show, who sold him one kilo of seeds.

“I was impressed at the numerous benefits of the crop, which include its various nutrients and uses, which range from nourishing the human skin, protecting the liver, fighting bacterial infections to preventing cancer,” notes the farmer who quit teaching in 2008 after 15 years in the profession.

Njuguna funneled Sh300,000 into the business, starting with propagating seedlings and selling each at Sh100.

“I used to sell about 800 seedlings every year at an average of Sh100. I realised this did not make economic sense and shifted to growing the plants in the greenhouse for value addition,” he explains, adding that he first grows the plants in a seedbed.

READ ALSO:   US Government announces date for Diversity Visa DV 2021 registration commencement

The seeds germinate in two weeks, after which he transfers them in polythene pots where they stay for two to three months before he moves them to the greenhouse, where he plants them.

“Inside the greenhouse, the plants must be spaced a metre from one row to the next and 0.3 metres from one plant to another. They mature in six months but regular weeding must be done for good growth,” says Njuguna, who notes that he embraced greenhouse moringa farming after birds damaged his crop in the open field.

Besides helping the farmer to curb birds’ damage, the structure makes the crop to grow faster since it thrives in warmer conditions.

Njuguna says the crop has a lifespan of 30 years, but he replaces the plants after four to five years, when the yields starts to go down.

He has embraced value addition, making soap, powder and perfumed and non-perfumed herbal cream from the plant.

“From the 500 plants, I harvest about eight kilos of leaves, which I dry and grind to make the products,” says the farmer, who identifies pests like white flies and spider mites and rust disease as the biggest enemy of the crop.

To make the jelly, after drying the leaves in an oven for eight hours, he mixes them with sunflower (50 per cent) and palm, soya and canola oils (50 per cent).

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He then mixes with beeswax, allowing it to heat up to 70 degrees Celsius and then it cools for 24 hours to form the final product.

DEVELOPMENT OF NEW ONES

To make soap, he uses a similar process but introduces olive and beef oils to the canola, sunflower, soya and palm.

He then mixes with sodium hydroxide solution and leaves it to be ready. He sells soap and the jelly at Sh40 and Sh120 respectively.

He grows the crop organically, using plants like tree tomato, basil, chia, lavender and oregano to attract and repel some of the destructive pests.

“I mix farm-yard manure with inorganic fertiliser during planting and top-dress especially after cutting the branches to allow development of new ones,” notes the farmer, adding that he plants cuttings for faster growth as he still sells the seedlings.

Dr Shem Mwasi, an environmental biologist at the University of Eldoret, explains that moringa oleifera is a fast-growing deciduous soft wood tree that can grow up to 12 metres high and reach a trunk diameter of 45cm when fully mature.

“It grows well in areas with an annual rainfall of 760 to 2,500mm, an annual average temperature of between 18 and 28°C and an altitude of up to 2,000m above sea level.

In Kenya, it can grow in areas that receive an annual rainfall of as low as 300mm,” he says, adding that it can grow in any soil type with a pH of 4.5 to 8, save for areas with a lot of clay soil that is constantly waterlogged.

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Dr Mwasi notes planting is done by sowing seeds or vegetative propagation (use of cuttings).

He said trees raised from seeds produce poorer quality fruits but develop longer roots (an advantage for stability and access to water) compared to those grown from cuttings.

“A single mature tree can produce from 15,000 to 25,000 seeds, with an average weight of 0.3 grams per seed during the harvesting season. Almost all parts of the tree are utilised but leaves and fruits (pods and seeds) are the most used parts.”

Leaves are used in human and animal nutrition and in traditional medicine because they are rich in bioactive compounds. They are rich in mineral, beta-carotene and natural antioxidant compounds.

“They are a good source of natural antioxidants, which protect the human body from free radicals that play a role in the pathogenesis of diseases such as cancer. The leaves added to cow feeds led to an increase in daily weight gain while daily fresh leaves resulted in increased milk production,” he said.

By Seeds of Gold

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Police kill terror suspect, two children

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Police in Kwale shot and killed a terror suspect during a night raid.

Two children that the suspect was using as human shields were also killed.

The suspected Al-Shabaab militant, Mohamed Mapenzi, was killed in his house in Kibundani by an elite police team.

Mapenzi is reported to have thrown a grenade at the police during the raid on Saturday night.

“As the officers were preparing to break into the suspect’s house, he suddenly opened the door and threw a grenade at them slightly injuring one of them,” reads a police report seen by the Nation.

The officers opened fire killing the suspect and the minors.

The suspect’s wife and three other children were also injured in the raid and taken to Msabweni Referral Hospital.

Sources told the Nation that an Al-Shabaab suspect, who is in police custody, took the security agents to Mapenzi’s house.

The suspect, Saidi Chitswa alias Ninja, who is believed to be an Al-Shabaab recruiter, was arrested following reports that he was planning to launch an attack at an unnamed police station.

After interrogation, Chitswa led the officers to Mapenzi’s house to recover firearms.

Police said a grenade and assorted jungle uniforms were recovered from the house.

Coast Directorate of Criminal Investigations boss Washington Njiru said two other suspects were arrested during the operation.

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The killing of the terror suspect comes a month after two other suspects were killed in Kwale and Likoni.

The suspect in Kwale, who was identified as Suleiman Ali Kodza, was gunned down a day after he escaped a police dragnet in Mombasa.

Kodza, alias Pembe, who police had termed as Al-Shabaab ringleader in Diani was shot and killed in Ngerenya, South Coast.

Police sources say Kodza is believed to be in the same group with  Mapenzi and were planning to carry out an attack at a police station with a mission of stealing firearms.

When Kodza was killed police recovered five bullets, a machete and a knife.

Police linked him to the killing of two officers who were guarding St Paul’s ACK Church in Ukunda in September 2017.

By Nation.co.ke

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Former K24 Chief editor responds to claims of joining Citizen TV

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Peter Opondo who was the Chief editor at K24 was recently rumored to be headed back to Citizen TV! The story was sparked by his farewell post now that K24 is no longer operating following a few unknown details.

Being an experienced journalist, Mr Opondo was then rumored to have gone back to Citizen TV; but turns out that this was yet another baseless story as he called it.

Speaking to Kenyans.com who reached out for a comment, Mr Opondo brushed off the rumors saying;

Veteran Journalist, Peter Opondo

Those are stories created by some idle people in self isolation with frenzied minds and itchy fingers.

According to him, after the K24 incident he decided to take a long break as he goes back to the drawing board before he making his comeback. Mr Opondo said;

I am on much needed break as I recalibrate and you can take that to the bank as a guarantee for a loan

According to reports, Mr Opondo joined K24 back in 2018 after quitting his job at RMS. Before joining the station, Opondo had been handling matters involving editorial team as a whole,; guided his team to success and for the 2 years he helped change the station to a complete media house.

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Farewell letter

In the farewell letter that left many emotional, Mr Opondo wrote saying;

We had our fights and make-ups, highs and lows, but at all times we kept the focus with a clear aspiration to win. It was all business- and also personal sometimes, you know! Even in difficult times, outsiders (like viewers) would never tell, we kept it in the family.

I applaud the teams, especially anchors, for holding a straight face- and even smiling- when there was a literal fire under your seats!

He went on to urge the former employees to keep their heads high as life has always been unpredictable.

The future may be uncertain, but so is life. I believe that somehow, somewhat the sun shall rise tomorrow. So smile, believe in yourself and keep doing what you do best.

BY Ghafla 

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