Thursday 21 September 2017
(Reuters (Eng) 08/28/17)
Kenya’s Supreme Court ordered the election commission on Monday to allow the opposition, which is disputing the results of this month’s presidential vote, to have access to its computer servers and electronic devices used in the vote-count. Election authorities say Kenyatta won a second term in the Aug. 8 polls by 1.4 million votes. A parallel tally by independent monitors based on a sample of around 2,000 polling stations produced a similar result. There were scattered protests in strongholds of opposition leader Raila Odinga. At least 28 people were killed in election-related violence, many of them shot by police, after results were announced. The protests, which dissipated within days had raised fears that political violence could again destabilize the region’s...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/28/17)
Kenyans producing, selling or even using plastic bags will risk imprisonment of up to four years or fines of $40,000 from Monday, as the world’s toughest law aimed at reducing plastic pollution came into effect. The East African nation joins more than 40 other countries that have banned, partly banned or taxed single use plastic bags, including China, France, Rwanda, and Italy. Many bags drift into the ocean, strangling turtles, suffocating seabirds and filling the stomachs of dolphins and whales with waste until they die of starvation. “If we continue like this, by 2050, we will have more plastic in the ocean than fish,” said Habib El-Habr, an expert on marine litter working with the U.N. Environment Programme in Kenya...
(Xinhuanet 08/28/17)
After a ride on Kenya's newly-launched Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), Nairobi Railway Museum guide Daniel Shikoli felt an urge to tell visitors what it meant for the country to run a new, modern rail link after a century-long hiatus in rail projects. Like Shikoli, Kenyans have good reason -- and ample opportunities -- to be excited. A trip by the Chinese-built SGR linking the port city of Mombasa and the capital Nairobi takes less than five hours for an otherwise tedious journey either by road or by a colonial-era railway. Kenya Railways currently operates one daily service from Nairobi to Mombasa and another from Mombasa to Nairobi and is looking into the possibility of increasing the frequency of trains. "It's...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/28/17)
Getting Europe’s migrant crisis under control will be in focus at a summit of Europe’s “big four” continental powers and three African nations in Paris on Monday, with French President Emmanuel Macron seeking concrete action. The 28-nation European Union has struggled to agree on a coherent answer to the influx of migrants fleeing war, poverty and political upheaval in the Middle East and Africa, and the crisis is testing cooperation between member states. Over the summer, Macron sought to take the initiative on managing the flow of migrants crossing the Mediterranean from Libya, mainly into Italy. He proposed hotspots in Africa to handle asylum requests. The viability of such centers was questioned by European and African allies and on Monday...
(Bloomberg 08/25/17)
Kenya’s election commission urged the Supreme Court to uphold the results of this month’s vote that returned President Uhuru Kenyatta to power and dismiss a legal challenge by his political opponents, saying the process was “impartial, neutral and accountable” to the constitution. The Independent Electoral & Boundaries Commission called on the court to throw out a petition filed by the opposition National Super Alliance challenging Kenyatta’s win against former Prime Minister Raila Odinga in the Aug. 8 vote. That petition “lacks merit and should be dismissed,” the commission’s lawyers said in opposing papers filed at the Supreme Court. The elections were conducted according to the constitution and the president was “validly elected” the IEBC’s lawyers said. “Discrepancies” cited by the...
(Standard Digital 08/25/17)
Tanzania and Kenya have ended a two-month diplomatic row that led to import bans of some products and resulted in heavy financial losses for businesses from either side. The cessation of hostilities came after President Uhuru Kenyatta and Tanzania's John Magufuli stepped in to end what was fast degenerating into a full-blown diplomatic crisis between Nairobi and Dar es Salaam. Following the deal, Tanzania has re-opened its borders to Kenyan products, including unprocessed foods, milk products and cigarettes, ending a standoff that saw exporters from both countries suffer financial setbacks. In reciprocation, Kenya has allowed Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) from Tanzania back into the country, a month after imposing a ban citing safety and security risks. Kenya has also lifted...
(Financial Times 08/25/17)
Opposition leader claims many of his supporters were intimidated into not voting. Kenya’s electoral commission has rejected opposition claims that this month’s presidential election was marred by massive fraud and insisted that Uhuru Kenyatta was “validly” re-elected. In legal documents filed to the Supreme Court on Thursday night in response to a petition by opposition leader Raila Odinga, the electoral commission says any inaccuracies in the results “were minimal and occasioned by inadvertent human error and not deliberate and calculated”. The commission’s response, seen by the Financial Times, also denies that votes were “manipulated, engineered or deliberately distorted, inflated or interfered with”. “The presidential election was conducted in an impartial, neutral, efficient, accurate and accountable manner,” the document says. Mr...
(Xinhuanet 08/25/17)
Kenya raised about 217 million U.S. dollars in Treasury bills auctions this week, as uptake rose for the second time in a row following successful conclusion of polls. The central bank, as in the previous weeks, put up for sale 91, 182 and 364 days bills worth 233 million dollars. From the 91-day bill, the apex bank was seeking 39 million dollars while the rest of the money was from the six months and one-year bills equally. The 91-day bill attracted bids worth 41 million dollars out of the 39 million dollars sought, a subscription of 105 percent. On the other hand, 182 day bill attracted bids worth 58 million dollars which was a subscription of 60 percent, with the...
(APA 08/25/17)
Following the conclusion of the August 8 elections, a section of Kenyans intend to file a petition with the African Commission on Human and Peoples Rights, amidst call for secession and their right of self-determination to form their own state. A group championed by David Ndii, key strategist of the opposition party National Super Alliance (NASA), intends to lodge the petition at the commission headquartered in Banjul, The Gambia, following what they term as years of marginalization of specific communities, vote rigging and subsequent killing of opposition supporters in the wake of the polls. The petition being signed online is slowly gaining traction, triggering a national debate on the issue and seems to be gaining favour with opposition supporters, but...
(Reuters (Eng) 08/25/17)
Mid-morning at Gaitheri Secondary School in central Kenya’s Murang’a County, and students are busy with their daily routine, as at any other school. But their establishment is different - boasting a better power supply than most rural classrooms. One of its iron-sheet roofs is covered in tiles fitted with energy-producing solar cells - an innovative solar-power technology known as ”building-integrated photovoltaics” (BIPV). The tiles, designed to be laid on roofs during construction, offer an alternative to adding solar panels on top to produce power from the sun’s energy. Solar tiles are starting to be rolled out in other countries too. Electric car maker Tesla Inc is taking orders for its tiles in Britain and the United States, where the first...
(Xinhuanet 08/25/17)
Kenya's waste management lobby on Friday opposed the government's plastic ban that takes effect on Aug. 28 on the grounds that it will lead to the loss of thousands of jobs that are dependent on plastic bags. Chege Kariuki, chairman of Waste and Environment Association of Kenya (WEMAK), told a media briefing in Nairobi that while waste bin liners have in theory been exempted from the ban, this is really not the case. "The conditions set for waste companies as well as manufacturers to receive an exemption are such that it will be impossible for the waste management industry to comply. As a result we envisage that the sector will have to scale down operations and hence reduce its workforce...
(The Star 08/24/17)
Kenya is expected to ride on the peaceful August elections to balance its annual GDP to 4.9 per cent, 0.2 per cent points up from 4.7 per cent posted in first quarter which was marred by drought. According to a sub Saharan Africa economic forecast released on Tuesday by FocusEconomics, the country’s economy is expected to further grow by almost a percentage to reach 5.8 per cent in 2018. This is however a 0.6 drop compared to 5.5 per cent projected by the World Bank in April after revising its earlier forecast of 6 per cent in 2016. Economists at the FocusEconomic while welcoming the President elect Uhuru Kenyatta’s ambitious economic plans to stimulate growth, which rely primarily on an...
(Daily Nation 08/24/17)
The Kenya National Union of Teachers has issued a seven-day strike notice demanding the reinstatement of teachers’ annual pay increment and promotion for educators with higher qualifications. The union lodged the dispute between them and Teachers Service Commission with the Labour Ministry on Thursday. PAY RISE Knut Secretary-General Wilson Sossion said all teachers have a right to an annual increment and it was not an item of discussion in the 2017-2021 Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), which was effected last month and saw an increase in teachers’ basic salaries. “In July, TSC in blatant contravention of Constitution, the Employment Act as well as established International Labour Organisation Conventions, purported to scrap the annual salary increment for teachers,” Mr Sossion said. “These...
(The Star 08/24/17)
One major developmental challenge our country faces is that of waste pollution. In Nairobi, for instance, the most populous parts of the city are also the most affected by waste pollution, and this is where you will find a lot of the SMEs, both informal and formal, thriving. Given their critical position, it is pertinent that we find ways to center them in our policy development towards environmental conservation. A conspicuous example of such a policy is the plastic bag ban issued by the Government this year. No doubt that this is a positively significant step that our country is taking towards environmental conservation and sustainability. However, the execution of the ban will favour big industrial businesses and supermarkets, and...
(MmegiOnline 08/24/17)
Botswana businesses have been urged to take advantage of the bilateral trade agreements between Botswana and Kenya. Kenyan High Commissioner to Botswana, Ambassador Jean Wambui Kimani made the call at the official opening of the Botswana Consumer Fair in Gaborone on Monday. She said businesspeople from the two countries should establish long-term networks to grow trade and investment, adding that robust intra-Africa trade is vital in achieving prosperity and growth amongst African states. “The relations between Kenya and Botswana are warm and characterised by historical ties that bind the people of the two countries,” she said. According to Kimani, the various memoranda of understanding (MoU) that the two countries have signed should give both Botswana and Kenyan companies the chance...
(Daily Nation 08/24/17)
Detectives have arrest a 17-year-old girl linked to the murder of IEBC ICT Manager Chis Msando. Police claim the suspect’s phone was used to send a threatening messages to Mr Msando. COURT The girl, whom we cannot name because of legal implications, was arrested in Migori on Wednesday by detectives from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI). She was then taken to DCI headquarters in Nairobi, which is leading investigations into the murder of Mr Msando. Early Thursday morning, the minor was taken to Kiambu Juvenile Court where detectives requested the courts to allow them to detain her for a week as they interrogate her further. She is now being held at the Muthaiga Police Station. Two suspects arrested last...
(The Star 08/24/17)
All commercial banks in the country have until end of November to present their elaborate cybersecurity plans. The Central Bank, in new regulations, said the move seeks to increase the industry’s stability on the back of increased application of digital technology that comes with higher risks of cyber crimes. For instance, a recent cybersecurity report by Deloitte ranked Kenyan firms, especially banks, as the biggest casualties of cyber crimes in the region, losing up to Sh17.1 billions last year. Tanzania and Ugandan firms lost $85 million (Sh8.5 billion) and $35 million (Sh3.5 billion) respectively in the same period. The report further revealed that 96.1 per cent of cyber security incidents are not reported as companies opt to protect their reputations...
(Daily Nation 08/24/17)
Three large Ugandan firms are set to make millions after they were exclusively allowed to bring poultry products into Kenya. Kenya has partially lifted the ban on the products from the neighbouring country after an eight-month embargo that saw chicken and eggs locked out of the Sh500 million market following the outbreak of avian influenza disease. The move, which will be strictly monitored by authorities for safety purposes, will see three firms approved by the Ministry of Agriculture—having met the required safety conditions—export the products. The three are Hudani Manji Holdings-Rainbow—a wholesale and retail supplier in Uganda, South Sudan, Congo, and Rwanda-- SR Afrochick and Kukuchic. Agriculture secretary Willy Bett says Kenya sent a team of inspectors from the ministry...
(Xinhuanet 08/24/17)
Kenya's national soccer team head coach Stanley Okumbi has come under fire for calling up a banned player to his provisional squad for three international friendlies. Kariobangi Sharks FC defender Pascal Ogweno was suspended for six games after assaulting a match official in a top-flight local league clash against Posta Rangers FC on April 22. The defender, who tore up the referee's red card after being sent off, was then sanctioned by his club of deducting his pay. Okumbi, formerly the Sharks' head coach, called up Ogweno on Tuesday in his rejigged preliminary squad of 51 for friendlies against Mauritania, Togo and Mozambique in Morocco during the FIFA international week starting on Sept. 2. Ogweno's presence in the squad sparked...
(Bloomberg 08/24/17)
Every African nation that’s sold dollar debt now has at least one junk rating, but it would be hard to tell by looking at the bond market. The average yield on sovereign Eurobonds in Africa has hovered near the lowest level in two years this month, according to a Standard Bank Group Ltd. index, even after Moody’s Investors Service cut Namibia to below investment grade on Aug. 11. The world’s biggest producer of marine diamonds had been the continent’s only dollar-bond issuer without a junk rating. A low interest rate environment in the developed world has encouraged investors to look past the problems plaguing African economies, including low commodity prices, dollar shortages in some of them and rising political tension...

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