Newspapers summaries


Banned: State cracks whip on IEBC demos: The government yesterday banned all CORD demonstrations against the electoral body even as Jubilee maintained its hardline position. The ban announced by Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery came even as Majority Leader Aden Duale threatened to block any deal that will be struck outside Parliament while Cord asked its members in a House committee not to take part in any discussion on the fate of IEBC. Nkaissery termed the protests illegal saying protesters did not comply with the law and had caused loss of lives and destruction of properties.

What is in CS Rotich’s briefcase as budget is read: Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich will this afternoon present his fourth national budget highlighting his plans to raise revenues through taxes and borrowing. The CS has been entrusted with Sh1.35 trillion worth of taxes, and another Sh700 billion to be borrowed on behalf of the country. Both avenues are painful as taxes have an immediate impact, while borrowing pushes responsibility to a later date or possibly to our unborn children.
Up to Sh1.4b was stolen in NYS scandal, new audit now reveals: The National Youth Service (NYS) paid out millions to a company five months before it was registered. This emerged alongside the revelation that the money lost in the scandal was more than Sh1.4 billion. A special audit shows an additional Sh609 million was paid out over and above the initial Sh791million initially found to have been lost. The Auditor General’s report notes Sh791 million was fraudulently paid out to three suppliers whose site details were irregularly defined by a Mr Fredrick Munge Musembi on various dates. The suppliers, Form Home Builders, Reinforced Concrete Technologies and Roof and All Trading, are all associated with businesswoman Josephine Kabura.


Plan to steal Sh1.3b from NYS exposed: The National Youth Service scandal was worse — a lot worse — than initially thought, the auditor-general has found out. The conspiracy to defraud the Government, and the taxpayer, was much broader and targeted the theft of Sh3.5 billion released in a supplementary Budget. And the woman most closely identified with the scandal, Ms Josephine Kabura Irungu, was paid Sh1.29 billion and not Sh791 million as initially thought. In all, a total of Sh1.86 billion was lost, according to the findings of the Auditor-General, Mr Edward Ouko.

Rotich to read Budget in the House today: Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich will today make the third pose with the black briefcase for the traditional budget photo outside Parliament. Inside the August House will be a considerable attendance by MPs, almost a full house waiting to know how the government will be spending the Sh2.3 trillion allocated for the year 2016/2017. It will be interesting to see how the government will be asking to allocate more money than it plans to spend, a picture that already played out in the first half of the current financial year. “The total cumulative expenditures for the first half of the financial year amounted to Sh769.2 billion against a target of Sh997.2 billion. The shortfall of Sh228.1 billion was attributed to lower spending by National Government of Sh35.8 billion and Sh139.2 billion in recurrent and development expenditures categories respectively as well as Sh50.5 billion shortfalls in transfer to the devolved units,” Mr Rotich explained in the Budget policy statement released in January.

State outlaws anti-IEBC demos: The government yesterday banned opposition demonstrations and warned that those who violate the order will be severely punished. But Cord immediately scoffed at the orders, saying the protests will continue until the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) is reconstituted. Interior CS Joseph Nkaissery said it was apparent that the protesters and organisers of the demonstrations had failed to comply with the Constitution. “To avert further violence, destruction of property and loss of life from today, the government prohibits all unlawful demonstrations in the country,” Mr Nkaissery ordered. He warned that it will be “dangerous” for any citizen to challenge the government directive on the demonstrations.


Karua threw constitution at Uhuru – Duale: It was a meeting at Sheria House in 2007 that set in motion the events leading to today’s IEBC crisis. Or so the story goes. Opposition leader Uhuru Kenyatta had gone to see the powerful minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs Martha Karua to propose a formula for selecting members of the electoral commission that would be acceptable to both sides of the political divide. The story goes that Karua picked up a copy of the constitution, threw it at Uhuru and said, “Show me where it is written that we should do that.” Karua has been quoted as saying in January 2007, “Only the President has the power to appoint electoral commissioners.” Shortly after that Sheria House meeting Karua proceeded to name six members to the Electoral Commission of Kenya, chaired then by Samuel Kivuitu. Jubilee’s majority leader Aden Duale says this was the single action that led to the decline of the electoral body, the post-election violence and the current debate on the composition of the IEC’s successor, the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission.

Government bans demonstrations: The government yesterday banned “unlawful” protests in the country following chaotic Cord’s weekly anti IEBC protests in which two people were killed in Kisumu and property destroyed. “To avert further violence and destruction of property, and loss of life, from today, the government prohibits all unlawful demonstrations in the country,” Interior CS Joseph Nkaserry said. Six supermarkets were destroyed and looted in Kisumu and there was a failed attempt to burn Kondele police station during last monday’s demonstrations. Last night cord leaders dismissed the ban describing it as unconstitutional. “Nkaisery is not the law and has no power to stop any peaceful protest,” said Cord co-chair James Orengo.

Damning Auditor reports shows Sh1.8 billion stolen from NYS: The National Youth Service fraudulently lost Sh1.8 billion in three instances, a special audit report by the Auditor General has revealed. The report stated that businesswoman Josephine Kabura received Sh1.2 billion through the fraudulent practices at NYS. Kabura is one of the suspects in the case concerning the loss of Sh791 million at the National Youth Service. The report tabled in Parliament on Tuesday also states she was “meant to receive part of a failed fraudulent payment of Sh695 million” in another instance. Auditor General Edward Ouko recommended that criminal investigations be conducted against all the officers involved in the fraudulent dealings.



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