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People’s Assembly suspended following Uhuru, Raila deal

Activities of the People’s Assemblies were suspended on Monday in favour of an inclusivity program launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta and National Super Alliance (NASA) party leader Raila Odinga, on Friday. The Organising Committee led by Economist David Ndii announced that they would give the initiative a chance as opposed to pursuing a parallel path to inclusivity. “The two leaders have asked us to give them an opportunity to spearhead this process. We have accepted and we acknowledge it is better to reason together than separately. We are therefore in this spirit suspending the People’s Assembly process,” Ndii read out. They did however, attach the caveat that the ceasefire would hold only if the programme, under the leadership of the former Premier and President, resulted in tangible gains.

Kenya looking to strengthen ties with Cuba

President Uhuru Kenyatta will today jet out for a three-day State visit to Cuba. A statement from State House Spokesperson Manoah Esipisu stated that the visit is aimed at strengthening bilateral relations between the two countries and deepening collaboration in health, sports, culture and trade. According to Esipisu, Cuba has a special historical relationship with Kenya and Africa as a whole. He said that President Kenyatta’s visit will seek to strengthen these relations and expand areas of cooperation for mutual benefit.

NHIF boss comes under fire for controversial tender cancellation

NHIF CEO Geoffrey Mwangi will appear before MPs today morning over the cancellation of a tender related to a health cover for civil servants, police, and prison officers. This comes just days after the Public Procurement Regulatory Authority launched investigations into the possible loss of more than Ksh400 million paid out for the tender.

Business highlights

Planning Ministry to finalize Third Medium Term Plan

The  Ministry of Planning has assured that the Third Kenya Vision 2030 Medium Term Plan (MTP III) will soon succeed the Second MTP 2013-2017. Principal Secretary, Dr. Julius Muia said that the plan will be guided by Kenya Vision 2030 and the country’s long-term development strategy which seeks to transform Kenya into a newly industrializing upper middle-income country. He added that the MTP is a major policy document that offers a clear roadmap of where the country wants to be in the next five years. In the 2018 – 2022 plan period, Kenya will implement the Big 4 Strategic Initiatives that seek to promote development of manufacturing, housing, food and nutrition security and universal healthcare.

AfDB signs deal with International Solar Alliance to propel solar development in Africa

In a major boost for its Light up and power Africa initiative, the African Development Bank has entered into partnership with the International Solar Alliance (ISA) to scale up solar energy in Africa. The Bank and ISA will jointly support technical assistance and knowledge transfer for solar development and deployment in sun-shine rich African countries. Both parties will also develop finance instruments for off-grid solar projects, as well as large-scale solar independent power producers for African ISA member countries.

Kenya signs deal with Uganda to rein in runaway flour prices

Kenya will purchase 6.6 million bags of maize from Uganda at Ksh2,050 each in a bid to plug a deficit that has triggered a rise in flour prices. The deal, spearheaded by Kenya’s Trade ministry will see local millers pay the Grain Council of Uganda for delivery of cargo at the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB) depots. Local millers will have access to 600,000 tonnes of maize. The agreement comes at a time when Kenya is facing a deficit of more than five million bags.

Sports highlights

Kenya’s Shujaa set to face Australia and Canada in Hong Kong

Kenya will be hoping to keep the same momentum going at the seventh leg of the World Rugby Series in Hong Kong from April 6-8 where they have been pooled in a tough Group B. Shujaa were seeded after finishing second in Vancouver and will fight it off with Australia, Spain and Canada. Kenya was in the same group with Spain in Vancouver, beating them 43-0.

Stoke City fall 0-2 to Manchester City

David Silva scored twice as Manchester City moved a step closer to the Premier League title with a 2-0 win at Stoke City on Monday night. Man City broke the deadlock after just 10 minutes at the bet365 Stadium thanks to Silva’s neat side-footed finish. The Spain midfielder then doubled the visitors’ advantage, converting after a lovely move five minutes into the second half. As a result, Pep Guardiola’s side will now win the Premier League by beating Everton and second-placed Manchester United in their next two fixtures.

Arsenal prepare to sell full back Hector Bellerin

Arsenal are ready to sell Hector Bellerin for £50 million (Ksh7 billion) in the summer to help fund their squad rebuild. Bellerin is viewed as one of the brightest prospects in European football and was a target for Manchester City last summer. Juventus have a concrete interest in the 22-year-old and are understood to be preparing a summer swoop.

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