Archive for July, 2014

On July 24th, K24 aired Bweta La Uhalifu, one of the most disturbing investigative piece about the sad state of the biggest referral hospital in Kenya, the Kenyatta National Hospital.

It was so sad to watch patients struggle on their own with some even having stayed for more than three days without being attended to. 

After watching the piece by Purity Mwambia one wonders, has KNH become a death chamber where doctors or nurses watch as patients die? Those were very shocking revelations about the hospital. Is it that the KNH staff are reluctant or just lazy?

Share your thoughts 

#BwetaLaUhalifu 

 

By Nicholas Cheruiyot, Bomet.

Many questions abound over the directive by Deputy President William Ruto that all secondary schools heads let go of KCSE certificates that they hold as collateral for school fees unpaid by school leavers.

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While its a welcome news to many form four leavers who yearn to have their certificates, it may rub respective secondary schools’ management the wrong way. Many schools are debt-ridden partly due to unpaid school fees and expenses like employing teachers to plug the yawning deficit that the government has failed to fill.

Has the government put in place  mechanisms to ensure that the plan will lead to a win-win situation for schools’ management, school leavers and the government? It remains to be seen whether the government will pay up all the debts that school leavers owes the schools. Only genuine cases of those who cannot pay up need be considered for fee waiver by government. If that isn’t done, the taxpayer risks paying school fees for parents and gaurdians who can do it.

What will stop unbehaved secondary schools students in their final year and the parents from not paying school fees if getting the crucial KCSE certificate is guaranteed? While the idea may be well intentioned, it may be hijacked by irresponsible people who think they can enjoy  schools’  facilities and leave without paying. What happens to others who need to use the schools facilities thereafter?

Another question that begs answers is whether Ruto’s order was just another road side one or a well thought out plan that has considered the feasibility of the idea. Not long ago the Dp ‘directed’ that power connection fee charges to remain the same but the reality is that the fee has now doubled. Will the latest one come to pass?

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Yet again, we have woken up to news of Gunmen raiding Pandanguo village in Lamu County torching houses, schools and robbing Kenya Police Reservists of six guns.

One of the houses torched during the Mpeketoni attacks last month

One of the houses torched during the Mpeketoni attacks last month

The attackers who are estimated to have been about 60 are said to have vandalizes a loacal dispensary and went further to steal medicine.

In the past one month, more than 80 people have been killed and hundreds displaced in Lamu area due to such attacks. In Mpeketoni for example more that 50 people were killed after armed people attacked the village, killing people and torching houses.

What followed next was a blame game between the government and the opposition with each blaming each other for the attacks. This begs the question, where have we gone wrong? why is our country under so much threat? why is Lamu and its environs becoming such and easy target to attack?

The frequency at which these attacks are being executed is just worrying. After the first or second attack, the government should have done more in ensuring the coastal areas become secure, but it seems like nothing much is being done.

After the Lamu and Tana attacks, Deputy President William Ruto’s gave Security bosses a 48 hours ultimatum to arrest the the attackers, “dead or alive”, or quit their jobs. 

Ruto went further to say hat the government will take an elaborate action to ensure the criminals who perpetrated violence in Mpeketoni, Poromoko , Witu and Hindi attacks are brought to book. Close to a month now and the same kind of attacks are being carried out in Pandaguo, an area which is just close to Witu. What does this mean?

It is high time heads should roll and the security machinery given a fresh new overhaul. What is president Uhuru kenyatta waiting for before carrying out a overhaul of the top echelons of our security and intelligence services? 

A friend told me after the Mpeketoni attacks that the security system in this country is a hopelessly incompetent network of bribe-collecting machine that long forgot its core duty. That is why terrorists, Al Shabaab or otherwise, can come into the country, show more organisation than our police and systematically massacre Kenyans then leave at their leisure. Something which i totally agreed with him.

So Mr. President, before we hear of another attack can you please do something.

#KanaliSpeaks

 

 

Once again, eviction of settlers out of a section of Mau Forest looms large as the deadline given to settlers of what government calls Maasai Mau draws near.

While the alleged loss emanating from the plunder of the forest is colossal running to billions, great regard must be given to the manner of getting settlers out that section of Mau. Hunting them out of what they have called home for about three decades will be in bad taste. Settlement there has been on since 1980s.

The Ogiek community forms the majority of the inhabitants of the area and there are claims that they have title deeds for the pieces they occupy. Until not long ago, the Ogiek community have for long been  ‘forest people’ with no much education and exposure.  What if they have nowhere to run to? What if they were duped by a rotten  system?  Two weeks ultimatum to vacate is just not enough.

Evictions like that now hangs in Mau like sword of Damocles have in the recent past been  emotive matters that raised political temperatures. Worse, it  led to untold suffering among the evicted families and even deaths. Given that area that government seeks to secure is a massive 28,000 hectares, many families will likely be left stranded and diseases, hunger and disruption of learning in schools will ensue.

What then is the government doing to avert such crisis that the eviction will herald? The fact that the purge threat coincides with the chilly month of July doesn’t help matters.

Jubilee Coalition rode to power with a promise to settle all Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, as one of its main planks. To their credit, they tried their best on that end though a number from
Mau forest remains homeless. Lately they compensated Embobut forest evictees. How comes that now it is planning to create new IDPs without even a promise of alternative land?

Local leaders led by none other than Narok County Governor Samuel Ole Tunai and his Bomet counterpart Isaac Ruto recently called for caution before the action is exercised. But it appears, as per press reports, that Narok County Commissioner Farah Kassim will have none of that, this is very sad.

The government has set a precedence of settling forest evictees and those from Maasai Mau should not be an exception. The only difference expected now is that the government should use past lessons and settle genuine squatters as they come out of the water tower. It should not
evict them, leave them at the mercy of providence before settling them as if it is an afterthought. Humanity must remain sacred.

Experts points that Kenya’s earnings when the forest is finally rescued adds up to billions and thus it will not hurt economy if the government invest by paying out  the squaters  and then reap benefits that occur  from it.

By Guest contributor Nicholas Cheruiyot, Bomet

E-Mail: mngenonick@gmail.com

Tension is building up in parts of the country as Monday Saba Saba day, the day set for the rally called by Cord to push the government to accept talks draws closer.

According to an article published in the Daily Nation, In Naivasha, some families fled their homes fearing for their safety after hate leaflets were circulated in the town.

And in Kisumu, where Cord is to hold a meeting on Saturday, business people were apprehensive and said they would not stock up for the weekend shopping.

According to the article, On Wednesday, Kisumu traders expressed discomfort over the rally planned there for the weekend.The traders say they are reluctant to add more stocks in their shops because they are uncertain about the aftermath of the Saba Saba rallies which are expected to culminate in Nairobi on Monday.

Fresh in their minds was the devastation and looting that the city suffered in 2007-2008 during the post-election violence.

The business people asked Cord to consider the consequences of the demonstrations on businesses in the town.

So here is the question, how peaceful will be the rallies? 

On Wednesday, Deputy President William Ruto in an interview with Citizen Tv  said Cord is free to hold its Saba Saba rally on Monday, but warned against statements that could plunge the country into chaos.

He went further to ask the Inspector-General of Police David Kimaiyo to provide adequate security.

Well, all we are going to do is develop a wait and see attitude and hope the day is going to be as peaceful as any other day.

The police have assured us of assured city residents of adequate security However, Cord  should ensure law and order is maintained at the venues. Kenyans want peace and we should not let this day plunge us into a state that will leave us where we were back in 2007/08.

#KanaliSpeaks

 

Members of Parliament from both the government have now formed a group that they say will spearhead national dialogue in the wake of the political stand-off between Jubilee and Cord.

The 115 members of parliament from Cord and Jubilee will hold their first meeting today and expected to form a steering committee with a chairman to spearhead the talks.

This group they say will function along lines of the inter-party parliamentary Group which negotiated important constitutional reforms before the 1997 general elections.

Even as the Mps were forming this Inter-party parliamentary Caucus, Cord leaders continue to push for their calls for a national dialogue. Some diplomats have also stepped in with just five days to the Saba Saba day the opposition leader Raila Odinga has called to press for the National Dialogue. Odinga is blaming the government for failing to on security, alleged corruption, the cost of living and also for the disbandment of the Electoral Commission.

President Kenyatta and the government on the other hand have insisted that they were not going to sit down and dialogue with the opposition. Kenyatta says dialogue should only be held through the people’s representatives in parliament.

What does this mean? Will the Inter-party parliamentary Caucus help solve the stand-off between Cord and the government? Raila Odinga has insisted that the Saba Saba rally will still go on. What should Kenyans expect during this day?

Raila called on all Kenyans to stay away from work on this day, July 7th, he declared the day ‘’a public holiday’’ saying the rally would mark the beginning of a big change in Kenya. Yesterday, he went further to say that the rally was going to be very peaceful. The Deputy President has also assured Kenyans that their will be tight security on that particular day.

Question is, will you be attending the Saba Saba rally? Do you think that is the right platform for Cord to call for a national dialogue?

#KanaliSpeaks

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