Newspaper summaries-April 25 2017

Newspaper summaries-April 25 2017

Daily Nation

State steps in as poll violence turns tragic: The government on Monday stepped in to stop the violence that has characterised ongoing party nominations as one person was killed in Homa Bay and others injured in the battle to be on the ballot in August. Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery said while the national government had kept off the nominations, it would now restore order because it was clear parties were unable to control their supporters. He directed police to quickly enforce the law by arresting those involved in electoral violence. Mbita MP Millie Odhiambo reported the death at Homa Bay Police Station, saying the deceased was her supporter.

IEBC furious at order to extend primaries period: A court order extending the party primaries by five days will eat into the time set aside for political parties to resolve disputes arising from the nominations, the electoral agency has warned. Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairman Wafula Chebukati also faulted the courts for failing to accord them a hearing before granting the application by a Non-Governmental Organisation on Monday. The Angaza Empowerment Network had said many Kenyans will be locked out of the nominations, if the period for conducting the party primaries was not extended beyond the Wednesday deadline. Malindi High Court judge Weldon Korir directed that all political parties continue with their nominations until May 1 pending the hearing of the application.

Kenya picked to pilot new malaria vaccine: Kenya will be among three African countries selected by the World Health Organisation (WHO) to introduce the world’s first malaria vaccine. The vaccine known as RTS,S or Mosquirix, will also be introduced in Ghana and Malawi starting next year. It is the only vaccine developed against malaria that has successfully made it to the large scale testing. In the next four years (2017-2021), the injectable vaccine developed by British drug maker GlaxoSmithKline in partnership with PATH Malaria Vaccine Initiative will be administered to an estimated 720,000 children aged between five and 17 months in high-risk areas in the three countries.

The Standard

Governors in trouble: The line-up of candidates who will battle for various elective seats at the Coast in the August elections is shaping up. This is despite the fact that ODM is yet to announce the results for two counties. Two days after the end of polling, results for key ODM primaries in Mombasa and Taita Taveta counties are yet to be announced. The outcome of the races for governor, senator and woman representative have not been announced following botched primaries that have sparked tension and anxiety. “We are waiting for further directives from the National Elections Board over the fate of the votes whose results were cancelled,” said David Odada, the Mombasa County elections board chairman.

Raila’s daughter won’t run in Kibra: Raila Odinga’s daughter Rosemary has withdrawn from the Kibra parliamentary race ahead of the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) nominations today. In a video message posted on her Facebook page, Rosemary said she was recovering well and wished to share the good news with those who had been praying for her. She told the people of Kibra Constituency, where she was to fight it out with incumbent MP Kenneth Okoth, Martin Okoth and Eliud Owalo for the ODM ticket, that she had quit the race but would still remain a strong and active member. “Over the past 30 years I have fallen in love with the people of Kibra. You have walked hand in hand with my family. We have laughed together and we have mourned together,” she said.

Anger and protests over cancelled ODM primaries: The Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) came under criticism over last-minute cancellation of the eagerly awaited party nominations in Kisumu and Siaya. Anger and confusion reigned in the two counties, after the party’s National Elections Board cancelled the nomination exercises. The Kisumu nominations were cancelled late on Sunday night while the decision to stop the Siaya primaries were announced only yesterday morning after some voters had arrived at the polling stations. There were conflicting reasons why the nominations were postponed to today, with some of the officials citing poor preparations while the elections board cited poor security. The two primaries are set for today.

The Star

Ruto camps at Jubilee offices to ensure primaries run smoothly: Deputy President William Ruto yesterday camped at Jubilee Party headquarters to monitor the nominations to avoid a repeat of last Friday’s mess that led to the cancellation of the exercise. Ruto took over leadership of the primaries on Saturday. Yesterday, he spent the whole day at the JP offices in Pangani from 11am to ensure nominations in five counties ran smoothly. The counties are Bomet, Nandi, Baringo, Elgeyo Marakwet and Kirinyaga. JP secretary general Raphael Tuju and the National Elections Board chairman Andrew Musangi confirmed proper measures, such as timely transportation of election materials to polling stations, had been improved and there were limited hitches.

CA to punish Safaricom over 3 hours of downtime: Safaricom risks being fined up to 0.1 per cent of its gross annual turnover for poor quality of service after its network failed yesterday. The Communication Authority said it has sought an explanation from Safaricom over the outage experienced on its network affecting its voice, data, SMS, M-Pesa and enterprise services for more than two hours. CA director general Francis Wangusi said the regulator will take action on Safaricom if the downtime was a result of its technical failure. “We are waiting to get an explanation of what happened. We should not have a communication breakdown in the country. If it was a deliberate move, we are going to take action,” Wangusi told journalists at the CA headquarters.

Rosemary Odinga bows out of Kibra MP contest: Opposition leader Raila Odinga’s daughter Rosemary Odinga has bowed out of the Kibra constituency race, citing poor health. Rosemary, who has campaigned for the seat for two years, thanked Kibra residents for supporting her family for more than 30 years. She said she would continue serving them but in a different capacity. “It is following my doctor’s advice, that for the time being I will continue serving my community in other capacities and regrettably bow out of the race for Member of Parliament,” she said in a video recording on her Facebook account yesterday.

Business Daily

Huge losses from Safaricom outage: Telecoms operator Safaricom  on Monday came under intense regulatory pressure after its network was hit by an outage that left millions of customers in a communication blackout estimated to have cost the economy billions of shillings. The network outage began at about 9.40 a.m. and persisted till 4.30 p.m. and the cause was yet to be made public by close of the day. Millions of Safaricom subscribers were unable to make voice calls, send text or move money through the popular mobile money transfer platform, M-Pesa. The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) warned that unless the shutdown was caused by an “act of God”, Safaricom would face sanctions — insisting the regulator does not tolerate downtimes of more than one hour.

Malaria vaccine test gets big push: The World Health Organisation (WHO) on Monday picked Kenya as one of the countries that will participate in the planned testing of the world’s first malaria vaccine. Phase One of the trials, which also takes place in Malawi and Ghana, will see 120,000 Kenyan children get the malaria jab over five years. The vaccine is considered to be humanity’s biggest advancement in the war the against malaria, one of the top killer diseases in Kenya and Africa. The four dose injectable vaccine (known as RTS,S or Mosquirix) will be tested in malaria-prone regions alongside existing measures, including sleeping under insecticide-treated mosquito nets and spraying of homes.

KCB sacks 36 employees in crackdown on fraud: KCB Group, Kenya’s biggest bank by assets, last year sacked 36 employees accused of fraud and professional negligence. The number was a slight improvement compared to the 33 staff fired in 2015 for abetting fraud — which led to the loss of an undisclosed amount of cash. KCB dismissed about 90 employees accused of fraud in 2014 — highlighting a general decrease in the number of bankers sent home for stealing cash or conning customers. The dismissals are disclosed in KCB’s latest sustainability report, which highlights issues beyond the topline and bottom-line such as corporate governance and integrity.

 

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