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Waiguru hits back at Ruto in ugly feud: The war of words between Deputy President William Ruto and former Devolution CS Anne Waiguru is getting dirty. Yesterday, the Deputy President went personal as he sought to link Ms Waiguru to Josephine Kabura, a key suspect in the Sh1.8 billion theft of NYS funds, terming the theft indefensible. Initially the figure was put at Sh791 million. But in a rejoinder sent to the Nation, Ms Waiguru suggested that the DP’s attack on her and his public pronouncements on a matter that is being handled by an independent agency indicated that there was something Mr Ruto was uncomfortable with. On Sunday, the Deputy President said the former CS was “cat-walking and talking a lot of English (kizungu mingi) in the face of the most audacious theft of public funds, staged by a “hairdresser” (Ms Kabura) who is reported to have carried loads of cash in sacks.

Kerio: In this valley there are more guns than spoons: It is Kenya’s valley of death, volatile at best, murderous at worst. From a distance, Kerio Valley casts the image of a vast bushland of thorn trees; a grazing ground of both the Pokot and Marakwet communities. To access this valley by vehicle, one must endure hours of slow driving on perhaps Kenya’s roughest road — a dusty, tortuous, rocky route that meanders round the hills surrounding the valley. From a distance, the valley is deceptive; dark green and inviting. But here, armed herders carry their deadly AK-47 and G3 rifles to protect their livestock from tit-for-tat raids, a task that was previously carried out with bows and arrows, which have in the past decade, or two, been replaced with military weapons. For the past one year, Kerio Valley has been turned into a battleground, forcing Deputy President William Ruto to lead a high-powered security delegation to the region last week. So far, an estimated 20 people have died since the sporadic attacks began late last year.

Record number sit Form Four exams: A record 577,253 students will sit their Kenya Certificate of Secondary Education (KCSE) examinations that starts Monday. This is the highest number of KCSE examination candidates recorded since the tests were first administered in 1989. The Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec) released information showing that 54,383 more candidates were registered in 2016 compared to 2015. The candidates begin the examinations with a mathematics paper. Other exams to be taken during the week are English, Chemistry, Kiswahili, Home Science, Art and Design and Building Construction. In 2015, the results of 5,000 candidates were cancelled due to malpractices. Education Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i has revised national examination rules to curb cheating and other misdeeds.

The Standard

Ruto vs Waiguru: Deputy President William Ruto yesterday sustained attacks on former Devolution Cabinet Secretary Anne Waiguru over the National Youth Service scam. For the second day in a row, the Deputy President stepped up the onslaught, saying those behind the scam should be behind bars, adding that some of the corruption evidence is in the public domain ‘and there is no need of investigations’. Ruto said there is evidence that money was lost and appropriate action should be taken against those implicated in the theft. Yesterday, the former CS responded, saying she has no interest in public exchanges with Ruto or those others speaking in public gatherings on a matter that is being handled by competent government agencies.

Stripping Kenya naked of her green cover: Illegal loggers have compromised forest rangers to deplete large sections of forests in Mt Kenya region. The schemes to deplete the natural resources are plotted by some Kenya Forest Service (KFS) officials who drop the guard to allow commercial saw millers to harvest more mature trees than they are allowed. In some instances the commercial saw millers fell double or triple the amount of trees they are licensed to cut. A spot check in Mt Kenya and Aberdare forests revealed that illegal logging has left parts of the forests bare.

Doctors: How we planned for watershed surgery: It cost Sh160 million to perform the 23-hour operation that separated conjoined twins Blessing and Favour. And it has now emerged that the team that made medical historical had planned for a 10-hour surgery but ended up spending nearly an entire day in theatre. Celebrations greeted the successful operation carried out at Kenyatta National Hospital last Wednesday; it had taken two years and one month, and 58 specialists to prepare for it. President Uhuru Kenyatta was among those who congratulated the medical practitioners who participated in the surgery. The team held hundreds of meetings and rehearsed the delicate operation, first on paper and then on 3D imaging, countless times.

The Star

Opposition plans how to share power: STRATEGISTS working on a formula to bring together the Opposition chiefs ahead of next year’s elections have proposed the reintroduction of the position of Prime Minister and two Deputy PMs. The team has also proposed that the Constitution be amended to create the three positions in a mode that will also change the current Presidential system to a parliamentary system of government. With this arrangement, the Opposition will have nine key positions to share among their top vote bloc leaders in the event they form the next administration. Apart from the President and his Deputy, the team will have the positions of Prime Minister and his two DPMs, the speakers of Parliament and the Senate and Majority leaders of both Houses.

 

62,000 bags of maize issued to Kilifi, Tana River starving locals:The government has started distributing maize from the Galana-Kulalu harvest to starving residents in the worst-hit counties at the Coast. Water and Irrigation CS Eugene Wamalwa and his Devolution counterpart Mwangi Kiunjuri handed over 62,000 bags of maize to residents of Tana River and Kilifi counties facing starvation. Wamalwa on Friday said with the ongoing harvest in the Galana-Kulalu scheme, up to 130,000 bags of maize will be supplied to the state departments of Special Programmes to feed Kilifi, Tana River, Mombasa, Lamu, Taita Taveta and Kwale residents until March.

State accuses Cord and media of misleading Kenyans: State House yesterday accused the opposition and the media of misrepresenting President Uhuru Kenyatta’s agenda for Kenya. In his weekly briefing, State House spokesman Manoah Esipisu said the government is concerned that the media is being used to misrepresent the facts. “Stating opinion and half-baked stories as fact must be one temptation we would urge journalists to run away from,” he said. The President’s agenda is firmly continuing to invest in Kenyans and in projects that lead to the improvement of their lives and welfare, Esipisu added. “Obviously other people from opposition parties have their own agenda, seeing as they were not voted into any office. But the President is focusing on service delivery,” he said. Esipisu noted that the government is focused on bringing electricity to schools and homes in every party of Kenya.

Business Daily

Kenyan tycoon on the spot after Uganda bank collapse: Prime Bank chairman Rasik Kantaria has found himself in the eye of a storm after Ugandan authorities placed Crane Bank in receivership over irregular lending practices. Mr Kantaria – a significant shareholder at Prime Bank – is a long-serving director and the second largest shareholder in Crane Bank with a 47.32 per cent stake. Ugandan authorities placed Crane Bank in receivership on October 20, 2016 and immediately suspended the nine-member board of directors, as well as the bank’s executives, saying the bank had failed to meet the legal requirements of its operating licence. The Bank of Uganda (BoU) said in a statement that Crane Bank was “significantly undercapitalised”, adding that the lender posed a systemic risk to the stability of the financial system.

Kabura firms registered as disadvantaged contractors: Seven of the 20 companies used to siphon Sh1.2 billion from the National Youth Service (NYS) are listed among those eligible for preferential access to government tenders, revealing how influential contractors are using the affirmative action policy to line their pockets with public funds. The companies, all of them registered under the name of chief NYS scam suspect Josephine Kabura, are listed under the Access to Government Procurement Opportunities (AGPO) register of firms owned by marginalised groups and qualify for special access to government tenders. The Kabura firms are said to have received Sh1.29 billion from the NYS in a series of fraudulent transactions that took place in a span of two years.

Sh6bn cancer centres plan to ease disease burden: Cancer patients are set to get a reprieve following recommendations to offer free medicine and construction of two referral hospitals every year in a Sh6 billion plan. The Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA) wants the Treasury to set aside Sh5 billion for the two referral centres and Sh1 billion to subsidise the cost of drugs for cancer patients. Official data shows cancer is the third biggest killer in Kenya after malaria and pneumonia, with experts warning the rate is set to rise. Establishing two referral centres every year will gradually ease the pressure on Kenyatta National Hospital and Nyeri Level Five Hospital. Treatment of cancer is either through surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy or a combination of the options.

 

 

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