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CS Balala revokes blogger from Tourism board over statement on Nairobi National Park

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Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala has revoked Pauline Njoroge’s appointment as a member of the Tourism Regulatory Authority board with immediate effect.

In a statement on Saturday, CS Balala said she had been replaced with Standard Group journalist Najma Ismail.

He explained that the ministry had just learned of her past remarks about the Nairobi National Park and could not associate itself with her.

For Ms Njoroge, the appointment was a case of so-near-yet-so-far as it was cancelled 24 hours after gazettement.

In the old, undated post that resurfaced on social media, Ms Njoroge called for the land the park sits on to be put to “better and more profitable use”.

“INTEGRITY”

The remark returned to haunt her, proving once again that the internet never forgets.

“… we have just seen what she tweeted in the past, that Nairobi National Park was useless. We do not want to be associated with such people and such thinking,” CS Balala said.

“The integrity of the park is very important and the government is committed to saving it and any other protected area which is the habitat for our national heritage – wildlife.”

CS Balala regretted that the ministry did not know about Ms Njoroge’s view, as it did not come during her background check, and thanked members of the public who used social media to highlight the issue.

NJOROGE’S VIEW

Ms Njoroge is a Digital Media Strategist and Communication Officer at the NEPAD/APRM Kenya Secretariat under the State Department for Planning.

In her post, she questioned the sense in sustaining the park given that Nairobi is congested.

Below is a screengrab of what she wrote.

Njoroge

REACTIONS

As soon as the Kenya Gazette with numerous parastatal appointments was published on Friday, Kenyans took to social media to highlight Ms Njoroge’s post.

She and many others landed three-year appointment to plum parastatal board positions.

Among them were Kanu Secretary-General Nick Salat, former Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission CEO Halakhe Waqo, former assistant minister Kilemi Mwiria, former vice-president Kalonzo Musyoka’s son Kevin Muasy and former Nairobi Speaker Alex ole Magelo.

On Saturday, some members of the public opposed Ms Njoroge’s appointment while others opposed its revocation.

Via Twitter, one ‘Lord Abraham Mutai’ said, “This is just sad. Denying Pauline Njoroge a chance to serve Kenyans based on what she said a few months ago is unacceptable. People have opinions on diverse issues and people should be allowed to change their minds. This is just making decisions based on emotions.”

Joyline Chebet said it would be ironical to appoint to the board someone who does not believe in tourism.

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News

Picture photoshopped to show as if prostitutes are demonstrating in support of Ruto

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A photo purporting to show sex workers holding a banner thanking Deputy President William Ruto for supporting their trade has been shared thousands of times on social networking platforms.

It has been posted herehere and here among other places alongside a claim the Kenya Sex Workers Association has endorsed William Ruto’s 2022 candidature for the presidency.

This claim is false; the photo has been doctored to include some of the writings on the banner.

A combined Google reverse image and keyword search by the Standard Digital Fact Check desk found that the original image was first posted on December 17, 2015. Activists in Kisumu were agitating for an end to violence against sex workers.

On the original image, the banner had the words ‘Stop killing sex workers. They are human. Save us from our saviours only rights can stop the wrongs (sic)’. These were replaced with ‘Asante Ruto for supporting our hustle. Wewe tutakupea free!’ in the manipulated image.

The original image taken on December 17, 2015 during the International day to end violence against sex workers. [Courtesy]

Kenya Sex Workers Association – a lobby pushing for the rights of sex workers – has also denied that the doctored image was from them or any of their member organisations.

It confirmed that the original image was from a past demonstration.

“We want to reiterate our position as a national movement that we do not engage neither endorse any political party, candidate or person,” it said on Facebook.

“We wish to call on the relevant authorities to investigate the source of these images which have been used to malign certain individuals,” it added.

-standardmedia.co.ke

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Lifestyle

Dennis Onsarigo in mourning

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Former KTN investigative Journalist Dennis Onsarigo is mourning the sudden demise of his father.

Onsarigo, who works as the Director of Communication in Taita Taveta County, shared the sad news via a tweet on his official Twitter account that enjoys a following over 641K followers.

“I just lost my dad” announced Dennis Onsarigo.

Despite, sharing the sad news to the public, Onsarigo did not reveal the cause of his father’s death.

Dennis Onsarigo Dad

Condolences message form KOT

Following the announcement, Kenyans On Twitter (KOT) joined conversation sending in their condolences messages to Onsarigo and his family.

Martin Wachira @Martowachira “@Donsarigo Polse sana . May God comfort and give you and your family strength during this difficult time”

The Chief ‘Pole sana Denis. May God give you and your family strength during this difficult time”

Julie Gichuru ‘@Donsarigo Poleni sana Dennis. My deepest condolences. Wishing you all strength during this difficult time. May he rest in peace Folded handsFolded handsFolded hands”.

Kirigo Ng’arua ‘@Donsarigo Deepest condolences to you and your family. Poleni”

John-Allan Namu “@Donsarigo Pole Sana Dennis. May God rest his soul in peace”

Leon Lidigu “@Donsarigo Pole sana big bro”

Sophia Wanuna “@Donsarigo Pole sana ndugu … upholding you & your family in prayer”

Akisa Wandera “@Donsarigo Oh noooCrying faceCrying face I’m so sorry Dennis”

Gladys Gachanja “@Donsarigo My condolences Dennis….poleni sana”

Dennis Itumbi, HSC “@Donsarigo Pole sana. God rest Dad in eternity. I pray for comfort and peace to you and Family”

Millicent Omanga “@Donsarigo Pole sana brother”

By pulse live.co.ke

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Health

KNH strike claims its first victim

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A man died at the parking lot of Kenya’s largest referral hospital where a strike by 5,000 workers paralysed operations on Monday.

The boda boda rider was taken to the hospital by his friends following an accident.

But the management of the Kenyatta National Hospital (KNH) insisted the patient was in a critical state and that his death was not due to negligence.

Dr Stanley Kamau, a board member at KNH, said the hospital and staff were not to blame for the death.

The strike disrupted services at the hospital and left patients unattended. The striking employees are protesting a delay to effect a pay rise totaling Sh601 million.

Some families were forced to move unattended patients from the hospital as members of the Kenya Union of Domestic, Hotels, Educational Institutions and Hospital Workers (Kudheiha), the Kenya National Union of Nurses (KNUN), and the Kenya Medical Practitioners, Pharmacists and Dentists Union (KMPDU) commenced their strike.

Workers’ demands

The workers are demanding implementation of resolutions from the State Corporation Advisory Committee, which upgraded the hospital’s parastatal status from 3C to 7A in 2012.

Following the reclassification, all KNH staff were to benefit from enhanced pay but it has never been effected.

Some workers went on strike late last year, prompting a return-to-work formula with management to end the boycott.

But the Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) has said the formula is not a basis for demanding a review of remuneration, arguing it’s not fiscally sustainable and will distort the salary structure in the sector.

SRC has asked the referral to retain the current pay structure as it awaits a job evaluation that will inform the remuneration review cycle for 2021/22 to 2014/25.

KNUN Secretary-General Seth Panyako said members were not interested in the job evaluation and wanted their salaries adjusted as the matter had been approved by Parliament.

“We want SRC to write to the CEO giving authorisation for payment because we know the money is there. We will not go back to work until we get the money,” Mr Panyako stated.

SRC the ‘obstacle’

KMPDU’s acting Secretary-General Chibanzi Mwachonda claims SRC is the only obstacle and it is frustrating health workers in the public sector.

The hospital’s chief executive officer in a letter to SRC yesterday said KNH will ensure the Sh601 million budgeted for in the 2020/21 financial year is paid in October.

In a letter dated February 12, 2013, to then Finance Principal Secretary, KNH detailed the breakdown of the salaries from the CEO to the lowest Job Group K16/17.

The lowest basic salary for the hospital CEO was set at Sh400,000, while the maximum had been capped at Sh560,000. House allowance was to be between Sh60,000 and Sh80,000.

While the CEO’s basic salary was settled at Sh400,000, that of the lowest worker was set at Sh17, 535.

by nation.co.ke

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