Friday 23 June 2017
(Bloomberg 05/18/17)
Steinhoff International Holdings NV plans to list its African assets separately as the acquisitive retailer seeks a new prize for shareholders following this year’s failed merger talks with Shoprite Holdings Ltd. The company said Wednesday it will seek to list businesses including clothing retailer Pepkor and furniture chain JD Group Ltd. on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, about 18 months after moving its primary listing to Frankfurt from the South African commercial hub. The new business could be worth as much as 60 billion rand ($4.5 billion), said Evan Walker, a money manager at 36one Asset Management in Johannesburg, although the valuation could also be as low as 40 billion rand depending on how much debt Steinhoff puts into the vehicle...
(Bloomberg 05/17/17)
Kenya announced steps to rein in food prices that are rising at the fastest pace in five years and providing campaign fodder for the opposition ahead of elections in August. The government will spend as much as 6 billion shillings ($58 million) subsidizing corn prices and waiving duties on milk and sugar, Agriculture Secretary Willy Bett told reporters Tuesday in the capital, Nairobi. The measures come as the Treasury prepares a supplementary budget to deal with the surging cost of living. The price of milled corn, a staple food known as unga in Kenya, has risen to as high as 155 shillings ($1.50) for a 2-kilogram (4.4-pound bag), from 103 shillings a year ago, after a drought in crop-growing regions...
(Reuters (Eng) 05/17/17)
Africa-focused oil company Tullow Oil Plc said it encountered 75 meters of net oil pay in two zones at an exploration well in Northern Kenya. The Emekuya-1 well, located in the South Lokichar basin in North-Western Kenya, would eventually be developed to full field development, the company said on Wednesday. The well has proven oil charge across a significant part of the Greater Etom structure, Tullow said. "The discovery not only adds more recoverable resources to the current portfolio, but, along with Etom-2 and Erut-1 (wells), establishes the 'northern triangle' part of the South Lokichar Basin as an independent production hub," Morgan Stanley analyst Sasikanth Chilukuru said.
(Reuters (Eng) 05/17/17)
Gay and lesbian Africans who fled abuse in their home countries face a "culture of disbelief" which makes their experience of seeking asylum in Britain traumatic, a Nigerian lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender rights (LGBT) campaigner said. Aderonke Apata, 50, who fled persecution in Nigeria, said the practice of assessing Africans' sexual orientation claims based on Western standards was problematic. "They expect an LGBT person to have used sex toys, to go to gay clubs," Apata, an asylum seeker who founded African LGBT charity, African Rainbow Family, told the Thomson Reuters Foundation. Apata has been trying to claim asylum in Britain for 13 years, but her case was refused several times after a judge ruled that she was pretending to be...
(AFP (eng) 05/16/17)
At least four people died on Tuesday when their vehicle set off an improvised explosive device in a small Kenyan town near the border with Somalia, police said. The blast was the second in two days to hit border towns after suspected Shabaab militants attacked Mandera, a village some 500 kilometres (310 miles) further north, killing a local chief and abducting two police reservists. Last October, the Kenyan government decreed a curfew, extended for three months in April, in Mandera county, and also beefed up security in the region to counter such attacks.
(Xinhuanet 05/16/17)
President Xi Jinping said Monday that China is willing to work with Kenya to push forward bilateral ties. Xi made the remarks when meeting with his Kenyan counterpart Uhuru Kenyatta, who attended the two-day Belt and Road Forum for International Cooperation that concluded Monday. Xi said the comprehensive cooperative partnership between China and Kenya has developed rapidly in recent years, and the bilateral ties are at their best time in history. Kenya is one of the pilot nations in China-Africa cooperation on industrial capacity and plays a leading and model role in China-Africa cooperation, Xi said. He proposed that China-Kenya ties be upgraded to comprehensive strategic cooperative partnership, calling on the two sides to view bilateral ties strategically. The two...
(Xinhuanet 05/16/17)
Kenya is set to hold talks this week with the United States in a bid to have Washington resume aid to Kenya's health sector that was suspended last week over corruption concerns, Kenyan officials said Monday. Kenya's Health Cabinet Secretary Cleophas Mailu told a media briefing that the talks will help Kenya finalize its position on the concrete steps to give comfort to donors to the health sector. "We are confident that in the next weeks, the U.S. will rescind its decision suspending aid to Kenya's health sector," Mailu said when the Health Ministry donated medical commodities to faith -based institutions worth 2.65 million U.S. dollars. The U.S. Agency for International Development last week issued a directive to withhold logistics...
(Bloomberg 05/16/17)
Kenya’s reserves of corn dropped to less than a day’s worth of consumption after stocks of the staple grain were released to millers, the National Cereals and Produce Board said. The reserve currently stands at 50,000 90-kilogram bags, equivalent to 4,500 metric tons, NCPB Managing Director Newton Terer said by phone Tuesday from the capital, Nairobi. The board released about 36,000 tons to millers last week, he said. The NCPB is awaiting information from the Agriculture Ministry about how the reserve will be restocked, Terer said, declining to comment further. Agriculture Secretary Willy Bett on Tuesday canceled a second briefing in as many days that had been scheduled to discuss food security in the East African nation. Kenya had insufficient...
(Financial Times 05/16/17)
Latest step by UK telecoms group to simplify assets as talk continues of bigger deals. Vodafone has transferred a 35 per cent stake in Kenyan operator Safaricom to Vodacom, its listed South African business, in the UK telecoms group’s latest move to simplify its sprawling global empire. The €2.3bn switch will be paid for in new Vodacom shares issued to Vodafone and means the Kenyan company will now be controlled at arm’s length. Under the leadership of chief executive Vittorio Colao, Vodafone has set about reorganising its portfolio of global assets. That plan has led to a merger with Idea Cellular in India to create the country’s largest telecoms company, combining its business in the Netherlands with Liberty Global’s cable...
(Standard Digital 05/16/17)
While the Government officials have put on a brave face, trying to resolve food crisis, Ministry of Agriculture bosses seem to be holding their breath as they watch the unfolding food crisis across the country. They know too well what shortages of the different agricultural commodities mean, especially if they have been keen on what similar situations in the past have resulted into. This is especially in regards to maize shortage and its impact on the retail prices of flour that has made Ugali, Kenya’s staple, a luxury. It has in the past seen senior officials suspended or fumble in public as they try to explain the food insecurity situation in Kenya that largely measured in the lack of or...
(The Associated Press 05/16/17)
Gunmen suspected to be al-Shabab Islamic extremists killed an administrative chief in an attack in Kenya's north that left two police reservists missing, an official said Tuesday. The attack took place in Omar Jillo in Mandera county on Monday night, Regional Coordinator Mohamud Saleh said. The county borders Somalia, where al-Shabab is based. Omar Jillo is among several towns in the area under dusk-to-dawn curfew over insecurity caused by the al-Qaida-linked extremists. A police report seen by The Associated Press says four unknown men believed to be al-Shabab members broke into the compound of administrative chief Dekow Abbey Sirat and interrogated him before they shot him dead. Mandera has been hardest hit in recent years by an al-Shabab campaign to...
(BBC News Africa 05/16/17)
South Africa's biggest mobile phone operator, Vodacom, is buying a 35% stake in Kenya's largest mobile firm, Safaricom, for $2.6bn (£2bn). The stake in Safaricom is being sold by Vodafone as part of its drive to streamline its African businesses. The deal will extend the South African firm's influence in Kenya. It will also help increase the use of Safaricom's popular M-Pesa money transfer service across Africa. M-Pesa, launched 10 years ago in Kenya by Safaricom, lets people without bank accounts use their mobile phones to transfer money. However the tie-up comes just a year after Vodacom dropped M-Pesa in South Africa after it failed to prove popular with consumers. That failure was largely attributed to the fact that possessing...
(Bloomberg 05/16/17)
When the impoverished West African nation of Niger imposed a ban on donkey exports last year, a small community of traders just over the border in Nigeria was devastated. “Before the ban, you could see thousands of donkeys here,” said Mohammed Sani, a 45-year-old trader in the Nigerian town of Jibiya, as he wiped the sweat off his brow. “Now look at them: there’s no more than 50, crippling the business.” Donkeys are being slaughtered at an alarming pace to feed a global trade in donkey hides that’s fueled by soaring demand in China, where the skins are used to manufacture a gelatin believed to have anti-ageing and libido-enhancing properties. The gelatin, known in China as e’jiao, is so popular...
(AFP (eng) 05/14/17)
Olympic marathon champion Eliud Kipchoge and London marathon winners Daniel Wanjiru and Mary Keitany will represent Kenya in the event at this summer's World championships in the British capital, officials said. Kipchoge, 32, is one of Kenya's most consistent runners and was part of a three-man Nike team that attempted to break the two-hour mark in the marathon in Monza, Italy early this month. Kipchoge set a world-leading time of 2hr 00min 25sec but it was not recognised as a world record considering the circumstances the race was held under. Wanjiru, 24, will be returning to the British city where he recorded his greatest marathon victory, beating the legendary Ethiopian Kenenisa Bekele on April 23. Former World record holder and...
(AFP (eng) 05/13/17)
At least 19 people were killed in a crash between a bus and two trucks early Saturday in Kenya, police said. The accident comes just weeks after another collision killed dozens in Kenya, which has notoriously dangerous roads. "We had a bad accident this morning where we lost 18 people on the spot," police commander Hassan Barua told journalists at the scene. Another passenger died in hospital. Police said the bus hit two trucks while trying to overtake in the village of Gilgil, around 120 kilometres (around 75 miles) northwest of Nairobi. Several other people are still in hospital, including the drivers
(Reuters (Eng) 05/13/17)
Tackling climate change in Africa could help resolve multiple problems ravaging the continent, from drought to refugees and violence, the head of the African Union said on Friday. The mix of global warming with economic woes and political conflicts keeps peace from taking hold, said Moussa Faki Mahamat, the Union's new chairman, at Chatham House, an international think tank. "There is a link between climate change and prosperity, as well as peace, on the continent," Mahamat said in French with an interpreter. "Africa is among the least polluting continents, and yet it is the continent that suffers most," he said. Mahamat, the former foreign minister of Chad, was chosen to chair the 55-member, Addis Ababa-based organization in January. In Africa's...
(AFP (eng) 05/12/17)
Blood was already pooling in the seat of her car when a second bullet tore through the driver's door and thumped into Kuki Gallmann's abdomen. "It felt like a punch," the 73-year-old author and conservationist said this week, speaking for the first time since being wounded a fortnight ago by suspected illegal herders on her 88,000-acre (36,000 hectare) ranch in Kenya's central highlands. Chronic issues of climate change, population growth and inept law enforcement are being compounded by drought and ethnic politics
(Bloomberg 05/12/17)
Kenya’s biggest bank by assets expects the government to remove a cap on commercial interest rates in the second half of this year after the measures failed to spur lending and instead put revenue under pressure. “I am very confident that a workable solution between the industry and lawmakers would be achieved most likely by the second half of this year,” KCB Group Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Joshua Oigara said in an interview Tuesday in the capital, Nairobi. “It’s something we never want to happen to us again. It’s a great lesson for us as an industry.” Lenders face a drop in revenue of as much as 25 percent and are being forced to reduce costs by closing branches and...
(Capitalfm Business 05/11/17)
President Uhuru Kenyatta said on Thursday an upsurge in the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and the return of the people of Somalia to their homeland to help in reconstruction are key planks in stabilising the Horn of African nation and putting it on a firm trajectory for growth. Speaking at the London Somalia Conference, President Kenyatta said although AMISOM had made significant progress in degrading terrorist activities and stabilising Somalia, there was still much to do before a planned AMISOM drawdown, and transition to Somali security forces next year. “I therefore urge this conference to endorse the call by the troop contributing countries and the African Union for urgent measures
(Daily Nation 05/11/17)
President Uhuru Kenyatta on Thursday met Prime Minister Theresa May and sought an agreement to guarantee access of Kenyan exports to the United Kingdom market after the country exits the European Union. At a meeting at Number 10 Downing Street, President Kenyatta also spoke strongly about strengthening bilateral relations with Britain, and closer security cooperation, especially in regard to Somalia. President Kenyatta arrived in Britain on Wednesday night to attend the Third London Conference on Somalia, and to meet the British prime minister on deepening bilateral relations for one of the country’s long-term allies. The President will also meet Prince William at Buckingham Palace on Friday. It was the first meeting between the Kenyan leader and the British prime minister...

Pages