Archive for November, 2014

Campus Post

THE National Intelligence Service informed the police and the Kenya Defence Forces in Mandera and Nairobi about an imminent terror attack by al Shabaab but did not act.

According to an intelligence officer based in Mandera, the security agencies were informed that at least 15 heavily armed insurgent had crossed into the country using three pickups mid November.

The officer who requested anonymity for fear of reprisals from his seniors said the police were also told of an active terror cell in Omar Jilaow area near Arabia village between Mandera town and Elwak, the spot where 28 Kenyans were brutally murdered on Saturday morning.

He said the terrorists are believed to have come from Gedo,Somalia, a region bordering Kenya at the northern tip of Mandera county. This region is often known as “no man’s land” as people move goods in and out of both countries freely.

Vehicles carrying contraband…

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Security forces near victims killed in the Mandera Bus attack in which 28 people were killed

Security forces near victims killed in the Mandera Bus attack in which 28 people were killed

One is left literally speechless with the horrific killings of 28 people in Mandera on Saturday. Graphic tales by those who were spared are blood curdling and heart wrenching. The less  said of the photos of the bodies of the killed circulated with abandon in social sites the better. Meanwhile, news from Marsabit aren’t any better.
What’s worrying the more is what is appearing as the lack of the much needed attention by the President and his deputy. Granted, Cabinet Secretary Ole Lenku was (at least) giving his tired lines on it but that with deaths of such magnitude and manner, a higher authority was a necessity.

After the gory killings, they should have dropped everything else to mourn with other Kenyans and give the much needed impetus to the manhunt for the killers. Tweeting condolences and seemingly impotent threats to terrorits, while attending functions like fundraisers, isn’t enough. I can bet  that one again no head will roll. One only hope that the establishment isn’t sinking to being immune to such deadly attacks on our country.

Goofs didn’t end there.It was a new low for the Security apparatures when it was reported that they delayed going to the site of attack for fear of attacks. Are our security personell and weaponry that hollow? Then whats all these pretence of the same officers in “hot pursuit of the criminals who escaped by foot?”

By NICHOLAS ChERUIYOT, BOMET.

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After the Very damaging expose came out of a London court on how top IEBC official pocketed Sh50 Million in corrupt deals with Smith & Ouzman, the company that was contracted to supply election materials ahead of 2013 General elections, The opposition, was quick to respond and in a press statement that took place today afternoon, it has put a list of demands.

The opposition, led by Raila Odinga while issuing a statement on the IEBC corruption scandal (Source:Facebook)

The opposition, led by Raila Odinga while issuing a statement on the IEBC corruption scandal (Source:Facebook)

The opposition, led by former Prime Minister Raila Odinga sais The integrity of the people who ran that process and the integrity of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission and the many other public institutions to which some of the former election officers have been deployed is in serious question.

”The case in London by the Serious Fraud Office puts our prosecution and our Ethics and Anti- Corruption Commission to serious shame and credibility questions” It said.

CORD bleives that Smith & Ouzman, apart from giving bribes to the Kenya election officials, also printed additional ballot papers for Jubilee which were used to rig the 2013 Presidential elections. Also it is alleging that Gladys Shollei, who was fired as the Registrar of the Judiciary amidst similar corruption allegation, presided over the scrutiny of the IEBC tallying of the ballot on behalf of the Supreme Court in the 2013 election petition. Before joining the Judiciary, she was an official at IEBC and is implicated in the corruption at IEBC.

During the tallying scrutiny at the Supreme Court, CORD says Jubilee was represented by Mr Davis Chirchir (Mr. Chirchir is the current Energy Cabinet secretary in government) who was also a former colleague of Gladys Shollei at IEBC and is similarly implicated in this scandal.

According to CORD, Some former members of IEBC have gone ahead to be appointed to critical public positions like Cabinet Secretary for Energy, held by Mr Davis Chirchir. This same Chairman of IEBC, according to seeing nothing wrong with his conduct, is equally insisting on staying to manage our future elections. It should be noted that CORD has been calling for the sacking and disbandment of this commission.

”We maintain that we cannot let the past and its ghosts rest. We reject the doctrine of “accept and move on” while our nation suffers” 

CORD has now put the following demands
1. The immediate resignation of all the officers and former officers mentioned in this scandal, their immediate arrest and their immediate prosecution. The acountability must begin at the top with the arrest and prosecution of Mr Chirchir and Mr Hassan.
2. We demand the investigation and audit of all the commissioners and principal officers of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission. Such investigation must also be extended to the all those who worked with this commission but who have since been deployed elsewhere or sacked.
3. We demand answers on what the government knows and when they knew it. We refuse to be party to the conspiracy of silence. What is being adduced in court in London point to a serous, baffling and shameful integrity and credibility gap on the part of these present and former officers and an indictment of the Jubilee regime. It cannot be that Jubilee does not know what these officers did. We have an intelligence service that is required to do background checks on people before they are appointed to key public positions like that of Cabinet Secretary.
4. We demand that the EACC show cause why it cannot be disbanded, and investigations opened into its officers. This development puts to great shame our prosecutors, particularly the Director of Public Prosecutions and the anti-corruption agency officials who have yet to nail anyone for these offences.
5. We demand the immediate arrest of Mr Trevy James Oyombra who is reported to have been the Kenyan making hefty payouts to Kenyan officials to influence the award of printing contracts to the UK firm. He must be sought and held to account.
6. We demand that the Kenya Commercial Bank, to which money was transferred for Mr Oyombra for onward distribution, must help the investigations and disclose how much was transferred to the officials implicated.

”This scandal kills completely the credibility and global standing of our nation” it said . And it still insists that as the opposition, they have reason to believe that this international corruption network remains intact in government.

”It is wreacking more havoc on our economy, compromising provision of public services while at the same time raising the cost of those same services, shoddily rendered.” it added

From left: Issack Hassan, James Oswago and Davis Chirchir. (Source: Business Daily?

From left: Issack Hassan, James Oswago and Davis Chirchir. (Source: Business Daily?

By now you must have heard about what could just turn out to be one the biggest corruption scandals in this country. A scandal involving Kenyan election officials and a British Printing company Smith & Ouzman that had been contracted to supply election materials ahead of the 2013 General elections.

According to an expose published by the Business Daily, United Kingdom prosecutors have filed in court loads of written evidence implicating senior Kenyan election officials in what has been termed as one of the best documented international corruption networks in Kenya’s history. Interestingly, the corruption ring includes Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Ahmed Issack Hassan who has always been on record dismissing any corruption allegations that have previously been leveled against the commission.

Smith & Ouzman is said to have paid millions to IIEC officials to win printing tenders ahead of the hotly contested last General election.

The scale of the corruption alleged by the prosecution according to the UK prosecutor Mark Bryant-Heron  is worth £349,057.39 which amounts to Sh50 million back here in Kenya,”

For many of the printing contracts the expose says costs were inflated by up to 38 per cent.

UK’s Serious Fraud Office (SFO) after investigating the matter revealed that top IIEC officials, the predecessor of IEBC,  asked for bribes using the code name ‘chicken’ to facilitate Smith & Ouzman’s to win seven tenders to supply election materials.  Materials such as ballot papers, voter registration forms, voter ID cards and nomination forms.

Davis Chirchir, the current Energy Cabinet Secretary in the Jubilee government who also worked as a senior manager at the IIEC when these deals were being conducted has also been mentioned as one of the beneficiary of this damning scandal. Suspended IEBC chief executive James Oswago, former Judiciary registrar Gladys Boss Shollei (deputy CEO), lawyer Kennedy Nyaundi (commissioner), Kenneth Karani (senior procurement officer) and the finance director also top the list of the people who ate this ”chicken”.

Smith & Ouzman was single-sourced by the IEBC to print ballot papers and supply other electoral materials ahead of the March 2013 General Election, and now this scandal now puts the integrity of IIEC into question.

The same Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission is now asking for Sh200 million from the government for voter registration.

Well, now you know.

Read more of the detailed expose here

It was all smiles for teachers who emerged winners in the interviews done in August for recruitment into the Teachers Service Commission (TSC). Many of them had been through a heartbreaking wait for absorption to TSC.
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However, their joy turned short-lived. Their patient wait for letters of formal employment turned to be a long one. And when the letters finally came, they were asked to report in January,2, 2015! That is four months after interviews.

I feel for that recruit who left his or her contract employment to run to school where he or she was recruited expecting that TSC will post letters soon. Some  were threatened by schools with dire consequences if they didn’t report that early. They recently broke for long holidays with bare hands.

Why does TSC take ages to vet the credentials of its recruits? Aren’t the rigorous interviews conducted at the local level suffice?

I bet TSC’s budgetary allocation from government for new teachers employment is enough to pay new recruits from as early as July. Certainly, there is more than meet the eye.

If her name sails through parliament and finally gets the President’s nod to chair TSC, Dr. Lydia Nzomo has a well cut clean up exercise.

By Guest Contributor Nicholas Cheruiyot, Bomet