September 20th 2017

Commentaries



Why we need to strengthen trade ties in the EAC

Phyllis Wakiaga | Friday, 15 Sep 2017 12:07 EAT

Exports are a key driver of wealth creation and growth of local jobs. By being able to access more markets regionally and internationally, our local industries can expand guaranteeing the thriving of related value-chains in the country, and hence the circulation of money within the economy.


It is unwarranted and unjustified to have so many Kenyan landmarks across the entire country, named after just two people, and it is time that steps are taken to rename several of the above Kenyan landmarks after other deserving Kenyan men and women.


Secondly, the Supreme Court’s decision demonstrated the Independence of the Judiciary and that indeed our public institutions are growing strong thereby fortifying our democracy and transforming the essence of our political culture.


Adhering to our Constitution as a matter of principle

Phyllis Wakiaga | Sunday, 03 Sep 2017 18:49 EAT

This uncertainty, lack of clarity and unpredictability is part of the arbitrariness that we are witnessing in the execution of a policy, which, according to the Parliamentary Committee for environment, did not even comply with the Statutory Instruments Act in the first place.


Coming face-to-face with disability could end supernatural myth-making in Africa

Free Press Correspondent | Thursday, 31 Aug 2017 18:54 EAT

The ‘Preparation of Communities: Using personal narratives to affect attitudes to disability in Kilifi, Kenya (Pre-Call)’ project was set up to promote disability awareness in small communities in a rural part of Kenya, by encouraging a process of reflection and education.


Nuclear solutions carry immense hope for African agriculture

Thuo Njoroge Daniel | Thursday, 31 Aug 2017 18:21 EAT

The application of nuclear science helped local farmers to put an end to an infestation of the false codling moth which severely damaged the local environment, seriously affecting the citrus industry that employed 10 percent of South Africa’s agricultural labour force.


The Githurai-bound Matatu crew needed a lesser verdict than to hang

Athanas Kipchumba | Friday, 21 Jul 2017 10:09 EAT

Make no mistake of branding me a misogynist. I'm just, like any other person, expressing my displeasure over the verdict which warrants appeal in all good conscience. Even murderers spend 7-year jail term, robbery with violence 14-year sentence and many other jail terms.


Why political dialogue is central for economic growth

Phyllis Wakiaga | Thursday, 20 Jul 2017 08:52 EAT

Do they have a vision and what is it anchored on? And as well we should. As the citizens of this country, tax payers who create jobs and sustain the economy, we ought to deep-dive into these manifestos and promises beyond the general utterances made on public daises.


What does a declining retail sector spell out for our nation?

Flora Mutahi | Friday, 14 Jul 2017 10:10 EAT

This is therefore a critical moment for us, as a country, to train our efforts and come together to work towards ‘stopping the bleeding’. Once this is done we can then institute strict measures to protect businesses, especially SMEs, from ever having to go through the same issues again.


Politicians should stop beating drums of war as the Election Day draws near

Athanas Kipchumba | Wednesday, 12 Jul 2017 14:43 EAT

Heightening our consternation even further is the fact that the ruling coalition [Jubilee] appears to be lauding the IEBC’s ineptitudes and unpreparedness. It makes us smell a rat


It further goes on to say, the savings will be applied to enhance the country’s productive potential and offset its national debt burden.


Unless Kenyans wake up to the unsettling reality that politicians’ self-contradictions and unfulfilled campaign promises should be challenged, they will always be rendered victims of terrible political propaganda and white tissue of lies.


Raila justified to reject IEBC's awarding of ballot tender to Al Ghurair

Athanas Kipchumba | Wednesday, 14 Jun 2017 18:40 EAT

I can attest that Mr Odinga has, in this country, consistently lifted the lid over some serious issues of national significance. No politician of the living generation I know can screw up such amount of courage that could shake the political foundations of the powers-that-be.


The creative industry can champion sustainable consumption

Phyllis Wakiaga | Tuesday, 06 Jun 2017 12:12 EAT

According to the Kenya Copyright Board, the creative industry in Kenya accounts for 5.3% of the GDP and has the potential to grow its contribution to 10% in the next 10 years.


We Kenyans need to change our attitude on waste

Flora Mutahi | Tuesday, 30 May 2017 16:57 EAT

According to the Journal of Waste Management, by the year 2018, revenues generated through waste management will be amounting to $60 million in the USA alone – which though impressive can be tripled if this practice is embraced by more countries in the world.


All of us Kenyans can make a change starting by individuals in order to make Kenya a better place for tomorrow, but the politicians and security officials must try better methods of preventing heckling and disruptions.


Predictability earns investor trust

Phyllis Wakiaga | Tuesday, 23 May 2017 12:04 EAT

According to the EAC Industrialization Strategy (2012-2032), the rate of industrial grown needs to be 11.7 per cent per annum to achieve a GDP contribution of 25 per cent within the next 20 years.


In this country, most of the cases taken to the courts of law are dismissed at the early stages on grounds that the security agencies did not gather iron-clad and tenable evidences. Or the police extract their evidences outside the legal confines. Sad and remorseful to the nth degree.


Why Njuri Ncheke has become a council of opportunists

Athanas Kipchumba | Sunday, 21 May 2017 15:26 EAT

Elders deserve much respect and must be qualified to earn it. But if they start going rogue by blackmailing and threatening leaders with curses in their unmistakable pursuit for material gains, that’s when and where they will be stripped and starved of their much-deserving respect.


How impactful is our 'inclusivity'?

Flora Mutahi | Tuesday, 16 May 2017 20:26 EAT

Hence, you will find that work places for example will try to be inclusive by hiring more women who are kitchen staff, front desk attendants, assistants and so forth with the representation of women thinning as you go towards the top.


The president ordered an “investigation” into the scandal. Just for formality, as usual. We waited with bated breath to see the culprits brought to book and the stolen money returned, but all went up in thick smoke.


Nothing shows this fact than the meeting today at Kigwa Hotel in Kiambu, where the leading 'independent candidates' from Central Kenya including former Limuru MP George Nyanja and former NACADA chairman John Mututho endorsed President Uhuru Kenyatta's re-election campaign.


Growing jobs should be a priority for our country

Phyllis Wakiaga | Wednesday, 10 May 2017 09:41 EAT

Just last week, the UN’s Human Development Index was released showing that Kenya was the worst hit by unemployment in East Africa. With 39.1 percent of the working age unemployed, we trailed behind other countries in the region including Ethiopia which was at 21.6 percent!


In one Nairobi constituency, a loser needed only to camp at party offices and cry all day long to back his claim that he won. There was no recount of votes, no poll repeat, nothing. At the end of the day, the cry baby jubilantly left with the nomination certificate in his pocket.


The emergence of lumpen rag-tag and self-styled politicians like Sonko, Waititu, Joho, Maina Njenga could be a protest against the betrayal by the learned and propertied in society like Kidero, Nyong'o, Kiraitu, Saitoti etc but also due to the macho and daredevil bravery by these lumpen politicians.


Sonko did nothing substantive with CDF funds when he was Makadara MP. Generosity and philanthropy does not move me so much when evaluating a public leader as their ability to manage and take care of my taxes and ensuring that I at all times get value for my public money.


The Jubilee leadership is more concerned with ‘tenderprenuership’ – awarding and empowering only their own cronies. We should work and sacrifice to have leadership that will not borrow loans beyond our ability to repay while much of the loans go to people’s pockets.


Also unprecedented in the nomination stage has been the level of corruption and bribery. Some aspirants have been caught on camera dishing out cash to scrambling wananchi in violation of the law. Some of those caught red-handed have gone to great lengths to deny what was the obvious.


Jackson Mandago's political strategy - founded on powerful propaganda laden with misguiding tribal narratives which manifestly suggest that the Nandi community is politically “under siege” - worked miracles. He trounced his closest rival Zedekiah Kiprop Bundotich hands down.


“The ballot paper will be crowded with independent candidates and they are likely to get unfair eyeballs and it is interesting to see how the IEBC arranges the names of the candidates on the ballot paper,” noted Esther Passaris an ODM women representative aspirant.


Miguna Miguna: Let’s build an integrity-and-merit-based society

Miguna Miguna | Saturday, 22 Apr 2017 08:41 EAT

We are not arguing that Joho should not be employed. All we are saying is that he doesn't meet the minimum constitutional to be Governor. Additionally, we are arguing that intellectual mediocrity and failure should not be glorified and that forgery and cheating must be punished severely.


Why Jubilee, IEBC are looking to ODM's action on Busia results

Tobbie Wekesa | Sunday, 16 Apr 2017 15:37 EAT

Many are waiting including the NASA main competitor who is also the incumbent, the Jubilee party, the way they will handle the Busia case bearing in mind that ODM is built on the pillar of democracy and one of the main parties that build NASA coalition.


You are waiting for Kenyans to behave well, who will organize and civic educate them to know and defend values if not the government? Who ensures that the reward system rewards those who uphold the values and punish those who undermine the code of conduct? It is government.


Despite his presence in the political arena for 32 years, Kalonzo remains detached from the vote-rich areas of Central, Nyanza, and the Rift Valley. His affable, non-combative demeanor in a country where belligerence and defiance are considered prime leadership qualities, has betrayed him.


When I see Advocates like Donald B. Kipkorir making statements justifying extrajudicial killings yet they are not calling for dissolution of courts of law, I feel disappointed. You either hold the police accountable or you suspend the constitution.


When Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho undertook to lead Raila Odinga’s presidential campaigns and started hosting countrywide rallies for our candidate, the same Luo mafia in ODM started a vicious war to fight Joho and to undermine his efforts.


Those are the bread and butter issues that candidates scrambling for leadership must be tackling, not arguing over the kilometer length of the road network. Whether Jubilee government has built 6,000km of roads as it alleges or merely 1,500km as its critics claim is neither here nor there.


IEBC preparedness for elections wanting

Liza Makena | Monday, 27 Mar 2017 15:57 EAT

In addition, Kenyans don't as yet have a final electoral law, since the National Assembly has not approved the final draft of the elections regulations the commission presented to them.


There is basis to worry about Uhuru's emotional stability

Charity Wainaina | Tuesday, 14 Mar 2017 07:33 EAT

What is even more worrying is that Uhuru is insulting other leaders now as a matter of routine. At William ole Ntimama’s funeral last year, he called one bishop who had pressed for Maasai land rights as "mjinga" (fool).


Lonyangapuo and Kamama should spare us the superfluous corner-cutting, unsubstantiated narratives of scapegoating and sickening defence of wrongdoers. If they can't, other right-thinking members of our society should treat them as outcasts.


It is important to state that the call to recognize the economic value of women is not a call towards 'women empowerment' but rather, it is a wake-up call to embrace smart economics. The recognition of Women's work has been attributed to the decline or advancement of economies all over the world.


Many will argue that President Kenyatta was contented with Mr Ruto’s aggressiveness to politics but we have to remember that Ruto had outsmarted his political nemesis President Moi by being seen as the Kalenjin kingpin in 2007 and 2013 general elections.


Forget Jubilee propaganda, Marakwets joined Raila, NASA ages ago

Athanas Kipchumba | Sunday, 26 Feb 2017 16:52 EAT

If anyone thinks I'm throwing dust to his or her eyes, I challenge him/her to painstakingly read through the online conversations and discourses with these trending hashtags: #InMarakwetHatukoPamoja, #WhowillsaveMarakwets, #BabawelcomeHome and so on and so forth.


The report puts Kenya ahead of 14 African nations of Botswana, Burundi, Cameroon, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Gambia, Mauritania, Nigeria, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan, Tanzania, Togo and Zambia, which also recorded cases of police harassment and killings.


CJ Maraga's assurance on election petitions most welcome

Nyambura Muthoni | Tuesday, 14 Feb 2017 14:49 EAT

Leaders especially should do their campaigns peacefully and prepare themselves to accept the outcome of the elections, or file their petitions with the Justice Maraga-led Judiciary which according to the CJ is ready to tackle any disputes.


Rwandan ban on medics using cellphones at work worth emulating

Nyambura Muthoni | Monday, 13 Feb 2017 11:04 EAT

"The ban applies to all health facilities during working hours. Patients have been complaining of medical workers who spend a lot of time on phone calls while on duty forcing patients to wait for long."


To break elite family dynasties, Kenyans should vote Dr Ekuru Aukot

Joe Khamisi | Thursday, 09 Feb 2017 16:08 EAT

This man could be the double-edged sword solution we are looking for. If elected President through his Thirdway Alliance, Aukot could be the one to slay the dynasty concept and extinguish the trail of tribalism that is eating our country from within.


Taita Taveta and Nyeri women representatives, Joyce Lay and Ester Murugi respectively, are asking women to deny sex to their partners if they have not registered as voters. “As women, our sons and husbands should not get any food if they are not registered”, said Ms Murugi.


Attempting to deal with the drug problem before first eliminating its enabler (corruption) is akin to plucking the leaves from a tree and leaving the tree in its fairest weather. The leaves will definitely grow again.


Replacing a medical doctor is not as easy as replacing a politician in a by-election. Many years of training and practice make this cadre of professionals particularly difficult to substitute.


The opposition must challenge this contentious law by all means. A large segment of the Kenyan populace is behind the opposition's authentic quest for level playing field, and Jubilee must not be allowed to impose its incompetent leadership upon us, Kenyans. We have suffered enough!


As a Somali, I have no business defending Duale

Jamal Bake Hassan | Monday, 09 Jan 2017 17:30 EAT

The Somalis also have substantial investment outside their ancestral counties. It behoves us as a community to ensure that Mr Duale is stopped from using his loose tongue. To my sisters and brothers, let’s not defend Duale, let him carry his own cross.


Larger Kangundo leaders can't afford to sit pretty in 2017

Rose Mukonyo | Saturday, 31 Dec 2016 12:42 EAT

"If the president signs, the bill will harm our democracy, therefore likely to spark worse chaos than the 2007/08 post election violence," he argued. He asks all aspiring candidates to engage a peaceful election as they prepare for aggressive battling in the political sphere come the election year.


National honours system glorifies power, connections, not values

Joe Khamisi | Thursday, 15 Dec 2016 14:47 EAT

Some of those honoured are famous more for their perpetually hateful and tribal tendencies than for exemplary behavior that inspires unity and hope. They are invariably incendiary and divisive and display no respect for the common good. They deserve no commendation from the people of Kenya.


'Harambee philosophy' has lost its noble cause in our modern Kenya

Athanas Kipchumba | Friday, 09 Dec 2016 20:23 EAT

The spirit of harambee, a Kenyan culture of community self-help event, was even encouraged by our post-independence leaders like the first prime minister, Mzee Jomo Kenyatta. From then onward, the forces of harambee have mustered a crushing momentum.


Turn your abhorrence of corruption into action, or forever keep your peace

Mithika Daniel Impwi | Tuesday, 06 Dec 2016 15:07 EAT

Our governors have taken the lion's share of our sweat, our executive has stolen more to sustain the siting government's face-off with the opposition, and the opposition has stolen so that they can match the throw from the government's side.


Jubilee taking Kenyans for a ride by scapegoating CORD on corruption

Athanas Kipchumba | Wednesday, 30 Nov 2016 18:34 EAT

Even without iota of evidence linking CORD leaders against the NYS scandal, Jubilee has unleashed its attack dogs and propagandist to paint CORD as part of the beneficiaries of the NYS loots.


Why Trump's triumph didn't drop my jaw

Athanas Kipchumba | Tuesday, 22 Nov 2016 10:04 EAT

Did the mainstream media, which the whole world relied on, to mirror the political terrain of the global superpower state compromise its objectivity for whatever reason? The colossal margin of blunder committed by the media leaves a lot to be desired, doesn't it?


Other precautions one should use is to visit the piece of land under sale and enquire from neighbours on the ownership of the land, search for the title deed at the Ministry of Lands, visiting the District Land Control Board.


Is Kenya on the verge of becoming a Narco-State?

Odhiambo Oyoko | Monday, 14 Nov 2016 17:25 EAT

There has been very few successful prosecution of the local drug barons. Further, many politicians known to be involved in the drug trade hold important political and public offices at both national and county level.


Our leaders are not licensed to lie, for whatever reason

Athanas Kipchumba | Tuesday, 08 Nov 2016 19:54 EAT

What I find quite delicious here is the fact that our leaders [obviously across the political divide] behave as if they are licensed brazenly lie to their subjects. Even the irredeemably corrupt go public to lie before the myriad eyes of the incensed and dejected populace.


No ifs or buts... Jubilee has lost the war against graft spectacularly

Athanas Kipchumba | Wednesday, 02 Nov 2016 07:33 EAT

A leader, even in the toughest of the life-trying moments, must not be seen to drive people to wilderness of despondency and spine-tingling hopelessness. Sadly though, this is where the president is predictably trying to take us, Kenyans, if his recent statements are anything to go by.


Our corruption investigation systems have become a joke

Mutinda Kavemba | Monday, 31 Oct 2016 14:29 EAT

A civil servant has got no reason to take more than two weeks before responding to an audit query if at all there is nothing to hide.


Raila's snub of Governor Ranguma opens the race for Kisumu governorship

Charles Mark Dienya | Sunday, 30 Oct 2016 14:47 EAT

Ironically, the former PM's decision turned out to be most unpalatable to Ranguma’s cabal, some of whom were heard throwing tantrums and cursing the decision in public.


Needed: a programme to cater for health needs of national athletes

Margaret Warui | Thursday, 27 Oct 2016 15:43 EAT

Millions of shillings are given to these federations which represent athletes, so they should step up to ensure athletes are physically and mentally fit all the time even if they are retired.


The Kenyatta Government appropriated the fruits of independence to Uhuru and his siblings and altered the rallying call of the Mau Mau struggle from “Uhuru na Mashamba” to “Uhuru na Kazi”.


William Ruto should never take the grumbling in Rift Valley for granted

Athanas Kipchumba | Sunday, 16 Oct 2016 16:59 EAT

An indication of an unsettling disquiet in the Rift is the heckling of the self-styled Jubilee loud-mouth, Senator Kipchumba Murkomen, at Tot Centre, which forced him to flee the meeting attended by high-profile Marakwet leaders. “The kitchen is too hot to stay!”


These campaign strategies are obscene. The idea of taking political campaigns to schools is ill-advised. A good leader is an individual who understands clearly the boundaries of political campaigns and scrupulously adheres to them.


Open letter to David Kimaiyo, presumptive Elgeyo Marakwet senator in 2017

Athanas Kipchumba | Friday, 07 Oct 2016 20:38 EAT

KANU in that part of the world, is unerringly anathema! Translating to the biting fact that using that party to seek elective position is akin to ploughing the sand or chasing after the wind.


It is high time Kidero quit ODM for Jubilee, where his heart belongs

Phil Wesonga | Wednesday, 05 Oct 2016 22:04 EAT

It's a poorly kept secret that Kidero is also openly sponsoring a prominent blogger to persistently denigrate and undermine the ODM party leader and to a very bad extent insult one of the ODM first daughters.


Kenya needs more openness in public appointments

Thomas Matalanga | Wednesday, 28 Sep 2016 11:24 EAT

The vetting process needs to be made public to avoid events such as those witnessed in Eldoret last Tuesday. Without information, rumours have a tendency of thriving, depending on the persuasiveness of those who are spreading them.


Museveni, one of Africa’s longest-serving leaders, won 60.8 per cent of the vote in presidential elections, while the main opposition candidate, Kizza Bisigye, secured 35.4 per cent, according to the country’s electoral commission.


Delays, corruption threaten Vision 2030 flagship projects

Thomas Matalanga | Tuesday, 23 Aug 2016 15:57 EAT

Despite Kenya’s gross domestic product (GDP) expanding by an average of 4.8 per cent since 2000, according to the recent statistics on Kenya’s failure to reduce the rate of poverty, the additional wealth generation has benefited only a small section of the population.


A call to empower the youth: op-ed by UN Secretary General

Ban Ki Moon | Friday, 19 Aug 2016 22:04 EAT

This year, the United Nations will name the first-ever class of UN Young Leaders for the Sustainable Development Goals – 17 outstanding young individuals, chosen from more than 18,000 nominations.


More than 30 Kenyan-born athletes are lined up for races in Rio, with Turkey and Bahrain accounting for the highest numbers. The US, Israel and Bosnia have claimed a slice of glory, thanks to Kenya’s talent glut.


Here is my vision for improving healthcare in Nairobi

Mutinda Kavemba | Wednesday, 20 Jul 2016 20:46 EAT

The above proposed tracking system will make such malpractises very difficult if not impossible. Transparency of the procurement process will also go a long way in ensuring that it becomes difficult and risky in engaging in corrupt acts.


DP Ruto should thank Njoroge, Kabogo for their sound warnings

Micah Kigen | Tuesday, 28 Jun 2016 11:38 EAT

Similar outbursts by Kiambu Governor William Kabogo have not been forgotten yet. Interestingly only TNA lightweights including MCAs, activists, nondescript legislators in TNA pretend to reprimand Kabogo.


Africans should root for Britain’s stay in the European Union

Thomas Matalanga | Saturday, 18 Jun 2016 15:25 EAT

Britain is set to go on a referendum on the 23rd of this month over its membership in the European Union


Quacks are easily finding their way into the pockets of unsuspecting patients, but the big question is, how do these unlicensed crooks work for days on end without being detected by the management of hospitals?


“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world,” said Nelson Mandela.


CORD should abandon its weekly protests

David Kinyanjui | Monday, 13 Jun 2016 12:01 EAT

Nairobi has in the past few weeks been a bedrock of unnecessary demonstrations led by the CORD coalition which is calling for the disbandment of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.


CORD should take Uhuru’s offer for talks on IEBC

Thomas Matalanga | Friday, 10 Jun 2016 14:40 EAT

A sigh of relief was witnessed across the country soon after the president agreed to the talks. These talks hold the future of the country.


As internet usage rises, so do risks, especially for women

Cynthia Irandu | Friday, 10 Jun 2016 14:39 EAT

The information age has made everything easier.


Spare no effort in protecting albinos

Waithera Murugi | Wednesday, 08 Jun 2016 14:42 EAT

Amnesty International has released a very worrying report on the threats to people living with albinism in Malawi


Kenyans’ indifference to police killings worrying

Thomas Matalanga | Wednesday, 08 Jun 2016 11:44 EAT

The number of people dying in the hands of the police during the protests by the Coalition for Reforms and Democracy (CORD) has been increasing each passing week.


The expression ‘crime of passion’ is swiftly turning into a household term in Kenya, with the number of love related homicides shooting up at an alarming rates.