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VIDEO: Uhuru tells a jobless Kenyan to give him his phone number

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President Uhuru Kenyatta was wildly cheered on Saturday when- out of the blue – he asked one of the members of the public who had lined up to welcome him to Nyandarua County to “come and shake my hand.”

The man, whose name we couldn’t immediately establish, siezed the moment, telling the president: “Baba ii, ndiri maitu na baba na ndiri wira.” Loosely translated “Father, I have no mom or dad and I am jobless.”

To which the president replied, pointing at one of his aides; “Give him your phone number.”

This at a time when joblessness, especially among the youth, is at an all time high in the East African nation despite all manner of political rhetoric promising to mitigate the situation.

Uhuru was on an extensive tour of Nyandarua county where he launched a number of projects.

The President, who began his visit in Njabini by launching the construction of the Shs 1.8 billion Njambini to Naivasha road also commissioned the construction of a Shs 100 million potato processing plant at Ol’Kalou.

He said the potato cold storage and processing facility will be equipped with a high volume borehole that will supply area residents with clean water.

The day-long tour also saw the Head of State launch a Shs 4 billion Stawisha SME Mashinani, a national program by the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Enterprise Development aimed at supporting small businesses in the country.

Stawisha is fashioned as on one-stop-shop to provide business advisory, asset financing, working capital, project finance and grants to SMEs either at start up, expansion or modernization stages.

Speaking in Ol’Kalou at the close of his visit, the President said the launch of projects in Nyandarua County is part of a broader government plan to implement development projects that will uplift the lives of Kenyans across the country.

“These projects we launched today are aimed at improving the lives of the residents of Nyandarua and are part of our wider plan to improve the lives of Kenyans across the country.

“We want to improve our roads. We also want every household and business to be connected to electricity to boost and also enable people to engage in small businesses that will benefit them,” the President said.

On the cold storage facility, Kenyatta said the new plant will help cut out middlemen from the potato business who have exploited farmers for a very long time.

The 20,000 metric ton storage facility occupies three acres of land and is one of the three cold storage facilities that the national government plans to set up June this year.

The other two cold storage plants will be constructed in Kisii and Meru Counties, at a cost of Shs 100 million each.

The President observed that the Ol’Kalou cold storage facility will enable farmers to store their potatoes for upto six months, a move that will enable them to sell their harvest at a time when prices are at their best.

Nyandarua produces over 30 percent of the potatoes consumed in the country but it is estimated that over 40 percent of the potato harvest go to waste as a result of lack of cold storage facilities.

He also assured Nyandarua residents that the government will also construct a potato processing factory that will help in value addition and create jobs for the youth.

On the Stawisha SME Mashinani, the President advised those who will benefit from the program to use the affordable credit to boost their businesses.

Sectors eligible for the Stawisha SME Mashinani support include agro and food processors, building and construction materials, wood furniture and metal fabrication, medical facilities, leather, textile and apparels, pharmaceutical processing and electrical and electronics works.

Mr Kenyatta once again emphasized the need for Kenyans to unite and live together in harmony, saying no development will be realised without peace.

He urged leaders to stop engaging in politics at the expense of serving the people who elected them.

“We know Kenya is a democracy and we hold elections at every five years but now is time to serve the people and not to concentrate on advancing personal interests at the expense of the welfare of Kenyans,” the President said.

The President had earlier in the day kicked off the issuance of title deeds to residents of former colonial villages by issuing 707 title deeds for five villages at Rurii, one of the campaign promises he made to the people of Nyandarua County.

He directed Lands CS Farida Karoney, who was present, to ensure that 5099 title deeds for the remaining 22 former colonial villages are issued within the next three weeks.

Leaders who accompanied the President included Agriculture CS Peter Munya and Nyandarua Governor Francis Kimemia among other local leaders and senior government officials.

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Long serving US Supreme court Judge and cultural icon Ruth Ginsburg dies at 87

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US Supreme court judge Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the second woman to serve on the apex Court and a pioneering advocate for women’s rights, who in her ninth decade became a much younger generation’s unlikely cultural icon, died on Friday. She was 87.

RBG, as she was popularly known, died in Washington DC  Friday after a long battle with pancreatic cancer.

Born on March 15, 1933, she served on the court  from 1993 until her death in 2020. She was nominated by President Bill Clinton on June 14, 1993.

Ginsburg became the second of four female justices to be confirmed to the Court after Sandra Day O’Connor, the two others being Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan, both of whom are still serving in 2020.

Following O’Connor’s retirement in 2006 and until Sotomayor joined the Court in 2009, she was the only female justice on the Supreme Court.

During that time, Ginsburg became more forceful with her dissents, which were noted by legal observers and in popular culture. She was generally viewed as belonging to the liberal wing of the Court. Ginsburg authored notable majority opinions, including United States v. Virginia (1996), Olmstead v. L.C. (1999), and Friends of the Earth, Inc. v. Laidlaw Environmental Services, Inc. (2000).

Ginsburg was born in Brooklyn, New York. Her older sister died when she was a baby, and her mother, one of her biggest sources of encouragement, died shortly before Ginsburg graduated from high school. She then earned her bachelor’s degree at Cornell University, and became a wife and mother before starting law school at Harvard, where she was one of the few women in her class.

Ginsburg transferred to Columbia Law School, where she graduated tied for first in her class. Following law school, Ginsburg entered into academia. She was a professor at Rutgers Law School and Columbia Law School, teaching civil procedure as one of the few women in her field.

Ginsburg spent a considerable part of her legal career as an advocate for the advancement of gender equality and women’s rights, winning multiple arguments before the Supreme Court. She advocated as a volunteer attorney for the American Civil Liberties Union and was a member of its board of directors and one of its general counsels in the 1970s. In 1980, President Jimmy Carter appointed her to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, where she served until her appointment to the Supreme Court. Ginsburg received attention in American popular culture for her fiery liberal dissents and refusal to step down; she was dubbed “The Notorious R.B.G.”, a play on the name of the rapper known as “The Notorious B.I.G.“, in reference to her notable dissents.[3]

She died at 87 years of age on September 18, 2020, from complications of metastatic pancreatic cancer at her home.\

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ODM announces plans to reconsider its policies

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BY KEVIN KOECH

A day after ODM party leader’s son Raila Junior made controversial remarks on the conduct of ODM politicians, the party has issued a statement on the same.

Speaking on behalf of ODM, Secretary General Edwin Sifuna announced that the party has plans to reassess its policies and make changes. Mr. Sifuna acknowledged that ODM needs to review its strategy.

He also noted that the party had initiated changes in its top organs. Additionally, he said that the changes are focusing on the 2022 general elections.

“We honestly looked at ourselves and even commissioned a task force to deliberate on internal issues. The team’s report, whose recommendations we have implemented, came with some indictment,” Mr. Sifuna stated.

“We wanted the task force to indicate our problems based on the report tabled before the National Executive Council (NEC) and adopted in its entirety,” he added.

The ODM Secretary-General also said that the party disbanded its National Election Board (NEB). Additionally, they disbanded the National Disciplinary Committee after it failed to discipline rebellious Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa.

Oduor Ong’wen, ODM’s Executive Director, also pointed out that they based the philosophy of ODM on fighting for human rights and devolution.

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Senators wants TikTok regulated in Kenya 

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BY KEVIN KOECH

Nominated Senator Iman Falhada Dekow now wants the government to regulate the usage of social media app TikTok.

Speaking at the Senate, the Senator accused the platform of collecting user data, location, phone number and other private information.

“There have been serious allegations against the application on the issue of data privacy, the application gathers information on a user’s country location, internet address and type of device if allowed.

“It will also ascertain the user’s exact location, phone contacts and other social media network connections as well as age and phone number,” she said.

TikTok is already under investigation over privacy concerns by U.S. and the European Union over its security.

“The question does arise to the safety of the data that Kenyans unknowingly provide to the application regarding themselves,” said Falhada

“The application has created a culture of violence, hate speech, bullying and exchange of sexually explicit content which in some cases are part of the trending topics with millions of posts.

“This has raised ethical concerns about the app and has contributed negatively to Kenyan society especially during COVID-19 pandemic era when schools have remained closed,” she added.

Nominated Senator Isaac Mwaura and Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei said that all social media platforms need to be investigated over its privacy and data security.

Nominated Senator Isaac Mwaura said that American social media brands have also been sued across the world over data security breach.

“Ukiangalia zile kampuni ambazo zimeweza kuanzishwa kule Amerikani, zenyewe pia zimeshtakiwa katika anga za kimataifa kwa sababu ya kutokua na usiri wa data ambayo wanatoa kutokana na watu wote duniani,” he said

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