Posts tagged as: jubilee

Public Debt Crosses Sh4 Trillion Mark As State Eyes More Loans

By Brian Ngugi

Kenya’s public debt crossed the Sh4 trillion mark at the end of March this year, reflecting the Jubilee government’s sharp appetite for loans.

This has raised fears of the country’s future ability to repay the mounting credit.

The latest Quarterly Economic and Budgetary Review report released Wednesday by the Treasury shows that total public debt has now risen to an equivalent of more than half (52.6 per cent) of the gross domestic product (GDP), on the back of massive increase in borrowing since the Jubilee administration took power four years ago.

The public debt comprises 51.9 per cent foreign and 48.1 per cent domestic loans.

“The gross public debt increased by Sh782.3 billion from Sh3.26 billion as at the end of March 2016 to Sh4.04 trillion, equivalent to 52.6 per cent of GDP by March 31, 2017,” says Treasury in the report tabled in Parliament.

“The overall increase is attributed to increased external debt due to exchange rate fluctuations, disbursements from external loans and more uptake of domestic debt during the period.” The rate of increase in the debt load, however, does not correspond with growth in revenue generation, indicating the widening gap and mounting pressure on government’s capacity to repay loans.

The ability to generate and grow tax revenue is a strong indicator of future ability to repay debt.

The Treasury report shows that the government’s cumulative revenue collection for the period July last year to March this year amounted to Sh984.6 billion against a target of Sh1.05 trillion.

“This represented an under-performance of Sh65.9 billion mainly due to shortfalls in income tax, (fees, charges and court fines) collection, Investment Income and Imports Declaration Fee (IDF),” says Treasury in its documents.

The total external debt stock including the international sovereign bond stood at Sh2.1 trillion at the period ending March 2017.

The debt stock comprised multilateral debt at 38.4 per cent, bilateral debt at 32.8 per cent, commercial banks debt at 28.3 per cent including international sovereign bond and suppliers’ credit debt at 0.5 per cent.

Corresponding to the rising debt load, foreign interest payments rose to Sh38.2 billion in the period compared to Sh26 billion in the same period of the 2015/16 financial year. On the other hand interest payments on domestic debt totaled Sh145.8 billion, which was higher than the Sh122.6 billion paid in the corresponding period of the previous financial year.

According to the budgetary review, Kenya’s loan repayment to China stood at Sh18 billion over the period representing over half of the total bilateral loans (Sh32.8 billion) highlighting the country’s growing appetite for Chinese loans.

Kenya this week committed to borrowing additional billions of shillings to finance the ongoing construction of the standard gauge railway (SGR) line indicating that the borrowings could soon take the debt load past 60 per cent of GDP level.

On Monday the government announced it is seeking an additional Sh370 billion ($3.59 billion) Chinese loan to extend the SGR from Naivasha to Kisumu, pushing the construction cost to Sh847 billion.

The country has in the past four years borrowed billions of shillings to finance power generation and road construction projects.

In addition to Sh327 billion spent on the first phase between Mombasa and Nairobi and Sh150 billion that the emerging Asian economy extended recently for the Nairobi-Naivasha section, the Chinese will have pumped a total of Sh847 billion in the venture.

This excludes interest on the loans that would push the overall cost beyond Sh1 trillion.

Ruling Party Confident of Winning Nairobi Governorship

Photo: Charles Kimani/DPPS

Mike Sonko, left, the Jubilee Party’s gubernatorial nominee for Nairobi , with deputy governor nominee Polycap Igathe in the county on May 17, 2017.

By Patrick Lang’at

The Jubilee Party on Wednesday exuded confidence of winning the Nairobi gubernatorial after pairing Mike Sonko with Polycarp Igathe.

Deputy President William Ruto backed the team, describing Senator Sonko, who is Jubilee Party’s nominee for the county’s top job, as the solution to the problems facing the capital.

At a press conference he personally managed, ushering speakers and arranging how they will sit, the DP said the Jubilee Party leadership fully supported Mr Sonko, who has picked Vivo Energy Kenya Managing Director Igathe to become his running mate.

“Under the leadership of these two gentlemen, we actually have a winning team. We can now do the things we have so much wanted to do as Jubilee administration in Nairobi,” said the DP at the Jubilee Party headquarters in a three-minute speech he made after unveiling the duo.

For the Jubilee Party in 2013 elections, having not won Nairobi, which controls up to 60 per cent of the country’s gross domestic product besides being the seat of power, has haunted them for the past four and a half years.

“This team understands the challenges of this city and are going to provide the solutions for the problems this city faces. And they have the right partnership with us to make sure that Nairobi truly becomes the City in the Sun, again,” Mr Ruto said.

PETER KENNETH

Mr Sonko, a streetwise politician and a ruthless mobiliser, has cut the image of a man who has related with the hoi polloi, the chunk of the 2.3 million voters in the city.

To clinch the Jubilee Party ticket, however, the senator had to fend off challenge from 2013 presidential candidate Peter Kenneth, who had painted himself as the manager that Nairobi needed.

Mr Kenneth’s team had hoped to win the primaries by painting Mr Sonko as an erratic leader hell-bent on violence and unqualified to lead the city.

But, like a man fresh from being baptised, the senator had taken Mr Kenneth’s advice, debuting a new image, one he hopes will catapult him to the helm of City Hall.

Gone are the heavy gold and diamond rings and chains, the multicoloured mohawk and dyed hair, the ripped jeans, and punching of walls or sleeping on the tarmac.

On Wednesday, he once again portrayed the new image, one donning a business suit, and choosing his words carefully.

“I have been like the de facto governor because all the complaints by the county residents have been brought to me for action and mainly issues regarding land grabbing which incumbency has never addressed,” Mr Sonko said in a five-minute prepared speech.

‘GOOD GOVERNANCE’

“As you will see from our manifesto, which we will be unveiling shortly, our agenda for this county is issue-based and will be anchored on good governance, transparency and I shall not entertain any form of corruption in whichever form.”

He promised to tackle corruption, address garbage collection, which he said had been taken over by cartels, restructure the City Inspectorate Department and address drainage and cleanliness, a job he said he will accomplish with Mr Igathe.

“You will appreciate my choice of running mate reflects the corporate governance image that the residents of Nairobi would like to serve them and his CV in corporate leadership speaks for itself,” he said of Mr Igathe, who he said will run policy, development and political affairs.

Mr Igathe, who said he went through a rigorous interview to win the seat with 11 others, said he will complement his boss, if they win. “I took a leap of faith and left a job at the private sector for politics because 60 per cent of our country’s GDP in Nairobi can no longer be left in the hands of clueless people,” he said.

National Super Alliance Expected to Hold Rally in Kisii

By Magati Obebo And Aggrey Omboki

The National Super Alliance (Nasa) is expected to hold a major rally in Kisii on Wednesday as it seeks to consolidate its support in the region ahead of this year’s General Election.

This is the second rally to be held by the Opposition following the unveiling of its flagbearer Raila Odinga, the first being in Nakuru last Sunday.

Expected to attend the rally are Mr Odinga, his running mate and Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka, Musalia Mudavadi (Amani National Congress), Moses Wetang’ula (Ford-Kenya) and Isaac Ruto (Chama Cha Mashinani).

Nasa’s regional coordinating committee chairperson Esnas Nyaramba said everything is set and residents are eager to welcome the Opposition leaders to the region.

She said no amount of charm offensive by the Jubilee Party will change the minds of residents who overwhelmingly voted for Mr Odinga in the 2013 General Election.

Jubilee’s top leadership, led by President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto have on several occasions visited the region and dished out goodies to woo residents to their side.

On Tuesday, the Jubilee Party suffered a major blow after one of the key pillars in the region, Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi, defected back to ODM.

“We are confident of the region’s support for Mr Odinga,” said Ms Nyaramba.

Kitutu Masaba MP Timothy Bosire, who is ODM treasurer, maintained that Kisii was still an ODM zone.

‘OPPOSITION ZONE’

“Nasa is free to tour wherever it wants and this time we shall prove to Jubilee that Gusii is still an opposition zone,” said Mr Bosire.

However, in a quick rejoinder, Kisii Senator Chris Obure laughed off claims that the Opposition had made inroads in the region.

“They have nothing to offer. They don’t have the interests of the community at heart,” Mr Obure said on Monday during his brother’s burial in Bobasi.

Kitutu Chache MP Richard Onyonka, who recently defected to Ford-Kenya from ODM, however, welcomed the visit, saying it will help the alliance gain a bigger foothold in Gusiiland.

ODM Kisii branch chairman Kerosi Ondieki said the alliance was determined to secure Mr Odinga’s votes in the coming poll.

“Jubilee’s attempts to convince voters will not change their decision to vote for Mr Odinga,” said Mr Ondieki.

Separately, deputy governor Maangi’s defection back to ODM elicited mixed reactions.

Mr Peter Ongwenyi, an ODM member in Kisii, told Governor James Ongwae to tread carefully with Mr Maangi.

Mr Obure and Kisii senatorial candidate Charles Nyachae said Maangi acted within his democratic right by defecting.

“He has a right to be associated with the party he wants,” said Mr Obure.

Additional reporting by Nyaboga Kiage.

Galana-Kulalu Food Security Scheme That Has Yielded Little

By Gerald Andae

As millions of Kenyans grapple with food shortages, many are wondering what happened to the Jubilee flagship project of Galana-Kulalu food security scheme, touted as a solution to cyclic hunger problems in the country.

This was one of the key campaign promises that the Jubilee administration made in its manifesto to make Kenya a food-secure nation through the one-million-acre Galana-Kulalu irrigation project.

To date, only 5,000 acres out of the targeted one million have been put under crop, even as millions of Kenyans are going to bed without food as a result of the ravages of drought.

The government projects that the number of those affected by hunger is expected to rise from 1.5 million last October to two million at the end of this month.

CLIMATE CHANGES

The key mandate of the Galana irrigation project was to move the country from rain-fed agriculture in the wake of climate changes.

On completion, the project was supposed to bring on board over 20 million bags of maize, a move that would have boosted the available stocks from farmers and slashed imports from Uganda and Tanzania.

The National Irrigation Board (NIB), the implementer of the project, says 85 per cent of the infrastructural works have so far been completed in the first phase of the model farm, with 75 per cent of the Sh7 billion budget for the first phase having been spent so far.

Acting general manager Mugambi Gitonga said planting only constitutes a smaller fraction of the entire work and that the most important work was clearing of the bush and laying of infrastructure.

PLANTED MAIZE

“We have so far planted maize in 5,000 acres of land and 85 per cent of works on the farm, which is actually the key activity in this project, has been covered,” said Mr Gitonga.

Mr Gitonga said when the government initiated the million-acre project, the focus was not only on Galana but countrywide, pointing out that NIB has so far put 400,000 acres of land under irrigation across the country.

Asked for his opinion over the Galana project, the chairperson of Parliamentary Committee on Agriculture Mohamed Noor, said Galana was a good project, only if implementation was proper.

GOOD CONCEPT

“Galana itself is a good concept, but the implementation has not been done properly,” said Mr Noor in an interview.

The worst hunger affected parts of the country are just next to the irrigation scheme. Kilifi and Tana River, according to the national drought early warning bulletin, have been the hardest hit.

Mr James Nyoro, special adviser to the presidency, in a previous interview, said small-scale holders should abandon maize farming and instead plant other crops while the government should focus on rolling out mega irrigation projects.

No Respite for Kenyans As Prices Continue Rising

Photo: Laban Walloga/The Nation

Transport Principal Secretary Paul Mwangi addresses journalists at the port Mombasa on May 15, 2017 after supervising the offloading of imported maize.

By Sunday Nation Team

The pinch that Kenyans have been feeling over skyrocketing prices of food continues to get worse as people find their money buying less and less commodities.

A spot check by the Nation across the country shows that prices of maize meal and sugar are on an upward trend despite the interventions announced by the Jubilee administration to deal with the situation.

This is even as Dr Richard Lesiyampe, the Principal Secretary at the State Department of Agriculture, on Saturday said that by the end of the month, 990,000 bags of 90kg maize will have been imported, which will be a step towards meeting the monthly consumption of sifted maize meal by Kenyans that stands at 1.5 million bags.

Dr Lesiyampe waded into the controversy surrounding the importation of maize, saying the State had no aim of making a profit.

“All maize being imported into the country is by private millers, and not the government,” he said in a statement.

“The importation is not a preserve of cartels as claimed but it is open to any Kenyan business person who can undertake importation,” he said.

However, Nasa coalition leader Raila Odinga said the Jubilee administration is hurting Kenyans with its policies.

‘NOT SOLVED’

“Despite importing 300,000 bags of maize from Mexico, it has not solved Kenyans’ problems. If elected, the Nasa government will save Kenyans. In our first 90 days in office, we will show them how to govern the country,” Mr Odinga told mourners at the burial of Tongaren MP Eseli Simiyu’s mother Rebecca Nasimiyu in Bungoma.

More on This

Controversy Rages Over Kenya’s Imported Maize


Imported Maize ‘Was Mexican Stock Stored in South Africa’Maize Is From Mexico but Was Shipped From SA – GovtWhy Maize Imports Are Raising QueriesMaize Import Won’t Address Shortage – Consumer Federation

Why Are Food Prices Soaring in Kenya?

Do Not Be Fooled, Food Shortage the Result of Misrule and GraftGovt Not to Blame for High Cost of Living – EconomistFlour Prices Unlikely to Come Down Until July, Millers WarnMPs Resume Tuesday to Help Bring Down Cost of Living

In Dr Lesiyampe’s estimation, Kenya will have a stable supply of maize in September.”By September it is expected that six million bags will have been imported and this will be enough to resolve the maize crisis in the country,” he said.Before that is achieved, Kenyans continue to carry the heavy weight of rising prices.In Kisumu on Saturday, supermarkets said they were limiting the number of packets of sugar and maize flour that a customer could purchase.”The price of unga and sugar is high but we have not experienced a decline in purchase. We have to limit the number of packets a customer can buy because if we fail to do so, then many people will miss the commodities because of the high demand,” said Mr Pascal Wabuke, the manager of Khetias Supermarket’s Kisumu branch.SUPPLY DECLINEHis sentiments were echoed by Mr Dominic Osiche, the manager of Choppies Supermarket in Kisumu, who said that a decline in supply of the commodities was behind their high prices and restriction.”We are limiting the number of packets a customer can purchase because we are experiencing a decline in supply. This is also why the prices have continued to rise,” said Mr Osiche.In Mombasa, a 2kg maize flour packet that cost Sh140 two weeks ago is now selling at Sh170 within Kiembeni Estate. The general retail price in Mombasa is between Sh170 and Sh200.A spot check on major supermarkets Nakumatt, Tuskys and Naivas in Kisii town revealed that some commodities like sugar were missing on the shelves.At Naivas Kisii, a 2kg packet of Jogoo maize flour was selling at Sh170 and it was the only available brand. Sugar, however, was nowhere to be seen on the retailer’s shelves.Naivas branch manager Evans Omwanza said the supermarket had run out of maize flour and sugar for close to a week.Mr Omwanza, however, said that they have been promised sugar by their main suppliers, Sony Sugar, and they are expecting it any time.‘STEADY FLOW’“We have also ordered two other brands of maize flour, Pembe and Soko, so that we don’t experience another shortage as well as ensure a steady flow of customers,” said Mr Omwanza.At Tusky’s Supermarket in Kisii, maize flour prizes have shot up steeply, with a 2kg Jambo flour packet costing Sh170, up from Sh157 two weeks ago. A 2kg packet of Tuskys and Mara brands of sugar costs Sh375.The prices are, however, slightly different at Nakumatt as Kabras costs Sh420 and Sony sugar Sh440. Jogoo maize meal, also the only maize flour brand at Nakumatt Kisii, was selling at Sh180.In Nyeri, most products had gone missing from the shelves or the prices had shot up alarmingly. For sugar, only one brand, Kabras Sugar, is available in 1kg packets only, selling at Sh175.Nasa co-principal Moses Wetang’ula, speaking at the same function where Mr Odinga spoke, said Jubilee was ruining the country. “They are running a bandit economy … they don’t want to mind the problems facing Kenyans, Nzoia and Mumias sugar are at the brink of collapsing yet they are not doing anything to sustain it.”By Elvis Ondieki, Titus Oteba, Daniel Nyassy, Elgar Machuka, Nicholas Komu and Victor Otieno.

Deputy President Hits Back At Opposition Over Cost of Living

Photo: DPPS

Deputy President William Ruto addressing a rally in Kimilili, Bungoma County, on May 14, 2017.

By Titus Oteba

The Jubilee government has hit out at the opposition for their criticism over the high cost of living.

The Deputy President William Ruto said the National Super Alliance (Nasa) leaders had no agenda for the country but were busy propagating lies instead of selling their manifestos.

Speaking at Amtalla Stadium in Kimilili Town, Bungoma County, on Sunday after issuing certificates to the party’s nominees for the August 8 General Election, Mr Ruto called on Kenyans to elect Jubilee leaders, saying they had a proper agenda and strategies for Kenyans.

“The opposition outfit Nasa leaders are happy when Kenyans are suffering in order for them to pick issues to hit the government with,” said Mr Ruto. “What is happening is because of bad weather.

SKYROCKETING PRICES

“Last year, farmers didn’t harvest enough maize. This has led to the skyrocketing prices of basic goods. But we are on top of things.”

He said that fast arrival of the cargo ship carrying 300,000 sacks imported maize from Mexico should not raise an alarm as the government was proactive in alleviating Kenya’s pain.

“The Opposition leaders are questioning why a ship with maize arrived earlier than expected,” said Mr Ruto. “They want the food to delay so that Kenyans can continue suffering.

“Ours is to ensure that Kenyans get food on time. We won’t be perturbed by their noise. Ours is to ensure that Kenyans no longer continue to suffer.”

IMPORTATION OF MAIZE

The DP said importation of maize was not unique to the Jubilee administration as past regimes did the same to cushion Kenyans from hunger.

Mr Ruto added that, over the recent years, Kenya has faced prolonged dry spells that necessitated importation of maize.

He cited 2008, 2009 and 2011 as years when the government imported maize to curb food shortage.

“We are importing enough maize and sugar,” said Mr Ruto. “In one week, we will be having these commodities, which will eventually save Kenyans.

“We don’t want foreign maize and sugar to flood this country so that our farmers can later suffer but just to ensure that we save Kenyans during the few months.”

HIGHEST HARVEST

Mr Ruto added that the Jubilee administration was committed to ensuring to the growth of the agricultural sector as it is the backbone of the economy.

He said in 2015 Kenya had the highest maize harvest since Independence, recording 42.5 million bags of maize, and attributed that to giving more focus to the sector.

The DP reiterated that the Jubilee government will scrap all the fees in secondary school from Form One to Four starting next year.

“We want our children to learn,” said Mr Ruto. “We will not experience any more dropouts in our schools.

“We want to see an educated society. Lack of money will no longer be a hindrance to proper education.”

DONT GAMBLE

Water Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa asked Bungoma County residents to vote in the Jubilee leaders, whom he said are committed to ensure that Kenyans live a better life.

“Don’t listen to the Opposition; they will mislead you,” said Mr Wamalwa. “Trust in the government of the day, which is Jubilee. Don’t gamble.”

Governor Ken Lusaka called on Bungoma residents to re-elect him so that he can finish the projects he started.

“The Opposition should not capitalise on the small problems as their agenda projects,” said Mr Lusaka.

Also present were Members of Parliament Dan Wanyama (Webuye West) and John Waluke (Sirisia), as well as Woman Representatives Reginalda Wanyonyi (Bungoma), Janet Nangabo (Trans Nzoia) and Rachel Shebesh (Nairobi).

Newcomers Upstage Seasoned Politicians in Bomet

By Geoffrey Rono

Several newcomers in politics have handed seasoned politicians defeats in the just concluded party primaries, boosting their chances of winning the seats come August in the General Election.

Among them is Mr Briton Yegon of Konoin constituency, who surprised many when he trounced Mr Sammy Koech – the incumbent and two-time legislator in the recent Jubilee party nominations to emerge winner.

Mr Yegon says he has been plotting how to capture the seat for the last three years.

The nominee says he has what it takes to walk the talk and serve the Konoin constituency better.

“The campaigns needed one to print posters and other election materials and whose expenses were not meagre but this is the order of the day,” he says.

The aspirant says he has had good working relations with the constituent, which has endeared him to them, earning him their vote of confidence in the primaries.

“It is the good of my work and the trust of the people in my leadership that has brought me this far,” he quips.

On his meagre budget for the nomination campaigns, Mr Yegon says he was not bothered in using his ordinary car in campaigns against his rivals who had convoys, featuring top-of the-range vehicles.

“The work I did for the people spoke for itself during my campaign trails. In elections, people are so important because they are the ones who decide who the leader will be,” he adds.

IS CONFIDENT

Mr Yegon is brimming with confidence that he will trounce his Chama Cha Mashinani (CCM) rival Cosmas Korir in the General Election.

In Sotik Constituency, another political greenhorn Dominic Koskei, the son of a one time Sotik MP Mr Antony Kimeto, surprised many when he beat the current Bomet County Woman Representative, Ms Cecilia Ngetich and former Nairobi provincial commissioner Mr Francis Sigei to clinch the Jubilee party nominations to win the seat.

Koskei attributed his win to the good done by his father, during his tenure as Sotik MP. “I was running against people with a lot of resources but despite my meagre resources, the people saw it fit to bestow me the seat and bequeath the seat that has been left behind by the Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso now running for the Bomet gubernatorial seat on Jubilee party ticket against the incumbent Governor Isaac Ruto of CCM,” he says.

Ms Ngetich opted not to defend her woman representative seat and instead vied for the Sotik parliamentary seat, in the process losing to the youthful Mr Koskei.

Mr Koskei will battle it out in the August 8 General Election with Mr Paul Kimeto, formerly Bomet branch executive of Kenya Union of Post-Primary Education Teachers (Kuppet) on CCM ticket.

PRINTING POSTERS

Mr Koskei similarly said he only spent money on printing campaign posters and other materials.

For Chepalungu Constituency, the sitting MP Paul Savimbi won the Jubilee party nod to defend his seat with ease, on the basis of what his allies said was his good development record for the duration he was area MP.

He will face off with Mr Gideon Koskei(CCM) on August 8.

In the Senate race, Jubilee party’s nominee, Dr Andrew Langat, says his long stint as a lecturer at Moi University served to endeared him to many Bomet constituents.

This is what enabled him to trounce the incumbent, Prof Wilfred Lesan, in the Jubilee party nomination race .

Dr Langat will now wrestle with Dr Stephen Kosgei (CCM) in the General Election. He too, says he did not use a huge budget to win the nomination since he has larger following among Bomet voters.

Ms Joyce Korir, Jubilee’s nominee for the Bomet woman representative seat says her role as Deputy speaker of the Bomet County Assembly and the incumbent Singorwet ward MCA, gave her a headstart in the nominations.

She is a one-time councillor for the ward and mayor of the defunct Bomet Municipal Council.

ALL NEW

Mrs Korir says she did not have to use a huge budget to down her opponent, as they were all new in the field of politics and could not match her prowess .

She will now face her fellow MCA, Mrs Hellen Rotich of CCM in the General Election.

In Bomet East , the wife of the late cabinet minister Kipkalya Kones, Mrs Beatrice Kones exudes confidence of beating her eldest son Mr Kevin Kones who is vying for the seat on CCM ticket.

She hopes to pick up from where her late husband left when he died in a plane crash in Narok County on June 10, 2008.

Mr Kones, a powerful figure in the Kanu government was MP for the larger Bomet Constituency and later Bomet East.

He was in office for only 8 months before he lost his life in the plane crash.

His wife Beatrice, succeeded him in the subsequent by-election. She later lost the seat to Mr Bernard Bett in 2013 but turned the tables on Mr Bett, when she trounced him in the jubilee nominations two weeks ago.

In Bomet Central Constituency ,the incumbent MP Ronald Tanui won the party nomination and says his development record speaks for itself to secure him a re-election.

‘A LOT’

“I have done a lot for Bomet Central Constituency people. I distributed development activities evenly to all the five wards without any discrimination, a gesture that gave me the respect to be re-elected,” he said.

He will be facing a newcomer in politics, Mr Kipngeno Kirui of CCM – popularly known as ‘Arwet’ in the General Election for the seat.

The current speaker of the Bomet County Assembly Geoffrey Korir who was also vying for the Bomet senatorial sea, lost Dr Langat and is now lobbying to be picked as Dr Laboso’s running mate in the Bomet gubernatorial seat race.

Eighteen incumbent Bomet MCAs both on Jubilee and CCM parties were downed by newcomers in politics despite setting side huge war chests for their campaigns.

However, of all the ongoing politics in Bomet, the one on the lips of many residents is the battle pitting Governor Isaac Ruto and the Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Lornah Laboso for the governor’s seat.

Dr Laboso exudes confidence of winning the seat from the incumbent and pledges to “bring change in Bomet on developmental activities and other gainful ventures”

Governor Ruto also insists he will reclaiming the seat because of his development record.

Why Sonko Will Be Nairobi’s Next Governor

opinionBy Machel Waikenda

Two weeks ago, Sonko, one of the most determined politicians in Kenya, decided to show Kenyans, and especially Nairobians, that he had more to offer. This was in the form of a documentary that showed what he has done for Nairobi.

Most Nairobi residents were moved at what a selfless leader Sonko is, and were amazed at what developments they saw due to his work. Nairobi residents have been looking for service delivery on many fronts and Sonko showed them that he was not waiting to be Governor to do it.

But Sonko was not done. Last week, he was interviewed on Jeff Koinange Live and what we saw was a transformational governor in waiting that was articulate, aware of issues and ready to work for Nairobi residents.

At one point, he made the current Governor Evans Kidero look clueless. Kidero had in an earlier interview claimed that Sonko cannot tell who the United Nations Secretary General is. Sonko did not only give Jeff the name but also wondered why Kidero had not asked that he name the chairman of the Nairobi boda boda association or that of the hawker’s association.

This showed Sonko as a man in touch with the realities of Nairobi and one not interested in the status that comes with the office of Governor. In fact, sentiments online were that Sonko had easily shed off his thuggish tag and was now looking even presidential.

In short, those who have claimed that Sonko did not have the demeanour of a Governor were left wiping off eggs from their faces. Sonko has proven that all that we saw before about him is not what he is today and that he is ready to show his true character. But besides what we have seen in the last couple of weeks, there is a lot that attracts Sonko to the residents of Nairobi. And this is why he easily out-washed all his opponents during the Jubilee Party primaries where the closest had less than half of the votes he got. One of the key issues that have made Nairobi Senator a darling of the masses is the ‘Sonko Rescue Team’. And this is something that he started way back when he was still Makadara MP.

The Sonko Rescue Team has come to the aid of many Nairobians over the years, and especially the low-income earners. This team has offered free services to Nairobi residents who have been neglected by their county government. Services delivered include supplying free water and assisting residents affected by disasters. One of the other strong points of Sonko is that he has been able to fight for the rights of all the residents of Nairobi. Whether the affluent or the poor, Sonko has been someone that many Nairobi residents have counted on to get protection. He has stood against land grabbers whether in the upmarket areas of Westlands or the slum areas of Kayole. His is a genuine love for the people and ensuring that their rights are not trampled upon. Some have argued that his credentials are in doubt and that he is not well educated to be Governor.

But we all know that Sonko, while he may have struggled with his academics in his past like many Kenyans, he has in adult life picked up and gotten the required academic qualifications. But even as we talk of credentials, Nairobians must ask themselves whether the highly educated and polished Dr Evans Kidero has delivered for them. This should not be a reason to deny Sonko the opportunity of working and delivering for the people of Nairobi.

The best gift that Nairobi residents, and especially Jubilee voters, can give President Uhuru Kenyatta, is a Governor who has remained loyal and proven that he can deliver for all. All Nairobi residents must ensure that Sonko becomes the next governor of the capital to ensure there is better service delivery.

(The writer is a political and communications consultant. Twitter @MachelWaikenda)

In short, those who have claimed that Sonko did not have the demeanour of a Governor were left wiping off eggs from their faces. Sonko has proven that all that we saw before about him is not what he is today and that he is ready to show his true character. But besides what we have seen in the last couple of weeks, there is a lot that attracts Sonko to the residents of Nairobi. And this is why he easily out-washed all his opponents during the Jubilee Party primaries where the closest had less than half of the votes he got. One of the key issues that have made Nairobi Senator a darling of the masses is the ‘Sonko Rescue Team’. And this is something that he started way back when he was still Makadara MP. The Sonko Rescue Team has come to the aid of many Nairobians over the years, and especially the low-income earners. This team has offered free services to Nairobi residents who have been neglected by their county government. Services delivered include supplying free water and assisting residents affected by disasters. One of the other strong points of Sonko is that he has been able to fight for the rights of all the residents of Nairobi. Whether the affluent or the poor, Sonko has been someone that many Nairobi residents have counted on to get protection. He has stood against land grabbers whether in the upmarket areas of Westlands or the slum areas of Kayole. His is a genuine love for the people and ensuring that their rights are not trampled upon. Some have argued that his credentials are in doubt and that he is not well educated to be Governor. But we all know that Sonko, while he may have struggled with his academics in his past like many Kenyans, he has in adult life picked up and gotten the required academic qualifications. But even as we talk of credentials, Nairobians must ask themselves whether the highly educated and polished Dr Evans Kidero has delivered for them. This should not be a reason to deny Sonko the opportunity of working and delivering for the people of Nairobi. The best gift that Nairobi residents, and especially Jubilee voters, can give President Uhuru Kenyatta, is a Governor who has remained loyal and proven that he can deliver for all. All Nairobi residents must ensure that Sonko becomes the next governor of the capital to ensure there is better service delivery. (The writer is a political and communications consultant. Twitter @MachelWaikenda)

Read more at CapitalFM:: Why Sonko will be Nairobi’s next Governor http://www.capitalfm.co.ke/eblog/?p=6398

Kenya

Mtongwe Ferry Suspended As Rains Wreak Havoc

Ferry services at the Mtongwe channel, Mombasa, which were re-launched by President Uhuru Kenyatta in March, have been… Read more »

Jubilee Bigwigs Clash As Nasa Seeks Meru Vote

By David Muchui and Agnes Aboo

The scramble for the control of Meru politics between Jubilee and Nasa has prompted a vicious war of words between the county’s bigwigs.

Senator Kiraitu Murungi and a team leaning to his camp has directed its guns on Governor Peter Munya, terming him a “Nasa mole” in Jubilee.

But Mr Munya’s Party of National Unity (PNU) has turned the blazing guns against the senator, accusing him of sabotaging its support for the re-election of President Uhuru Kenyatta.

And the opposition, through Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) is giving the two Jubilee camps sleepless nights as it intensifies its hunt for the Meru vote targeting to get 300,000 votes from the region.

But it is the rivalry between Governor Munya and Senator Murungi that is nastier.

ENDORSE UHURU

During a campaign rally at the weekend in Githongo, Imenti Central led by Mr Murungi, Igembe South MP Mithika Linturi, who is seeking the Senate seat together with several parliamentary and Ward representative aspirants from across the county, accused Mr Munya of secretly helping the Opposition to gain ground in the county.

Mr Linturi dared Mr Munya to lead PNU delegates in endorsing President Kenyatta’s reelection just like four other parties did on Saturday.

“We saw Kanu, Narc Kenya, EFP and Maendeleo Chap Chap parties endorsing the president in his presence. We did not see PNU hold such a meeting. This is why we are saying PNU is backing Nasa candidates,” Mr Linturi said.

Mr Murungi said Mr Munya was not genuine in his support for President Kenyatta.

“We know Mr Munya and his government financed Nasa flagbearer Raila Odinga’s tour in Meru two months ago,” claimed Mr Murungi.

He added: “He should know that we are aware that he has been meeting Opposition chiefs to plan how to sell the coalition in Meru. That will never happen because Meru is a Jubilee zone.”

‘DARK FORCES’

But speaking to the Nation by phone on Monday, PNU Secretary General John Okemwa dismissed the claims and insisted the party supports Mr Kenyatta’s bid for a second term as President.

He accused ‘some dark forces’ of ensuring PNU was not informed of plans to have parties friendly to the president to hold delegate’s conferences to endorse Mr Kenyatta.

“We are aware that individuals including Senator Murungi who are fighting our party leader did not want us to know of the Saturday meetings.

“Other parties received requests to hold the special delegates meetings but we were left out. However, that does not change our resolve to support Mr Kenyatta,” Mr Okemwa said.

According to him, there was an elaborate scheme to leave out PNU from the Saturday endorsements so as to start a smear campaign against Mr Munya by linking him to Nasa.

“I know this is all about Mr Munya’s 2022 ambitions to vie for the Presidency. We will book an appointment with the president and inform him that we were sidelined by some forces,” he said.

“Our delegates met last year and resolved to support the president’s re-election,” he added.

JUBILEE ZONE

Meanwhile, Mr Linturi downplayed sentiments by former Imenti Central MP Kirugi M’Mukindia that Nasa was gaining ground in Meru.

“We are here at Mr M’Mukindia’s backyard to confirm whether you sent him to Mr Odinga to say that Meru has joined Nasa,” he told a crowd.

This comes even after Mr Odinga said the opposition was making inroads in areas considered to be pro-jubilee including Meru and Tharaka-Nithi counties.

Meru ODM coordinator Mike Makarina has since said the opposition was eying over 300,000 votes in Meru and Tharaka-Nithi counties.

Mr Makarina, who is Mr Odinga’s point man in the region, said the Opposition had put in place strategies to deny Jubilee a clear win there.

Will Kenyatta Be Endorsed At Convention?

By Simon Ndonga

Nairobi — The Jubilee Party will hold a Special National Delegates Convention Saturday at the Bomas of Kenya, following the just concluded nominations to endorse President Uhuru Kenyatta as the party flag bearer for the August General Election.

The meeting will also take stock of the party’s unity following the gruelling primaries that saw many aspirants defecting to vie as independent candidates.

According to party Secretary General Raphael Tuju, the convention will be attended by all sitting Governors, MPs, Senators, Woman representatives and MCAs.

Tuju stated that all members of the National Governing Council and all newly nominated aspirants will also be present during the event.

On Friday, the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) delegates formally endorsed its party leader Raila Odinga to be their presidential flag-bearer in the August 8 polls.

In a colourful and choreographed ODM National Delegates Convention, Odinga was proposed by the Garissa Branch Party Chairman Gedi Abdi and seconded by Busia County Women League Chairperson Angela Nafula, a week after he was unveiled as the joint Opposition National Super Alliance (NASA) candidate.

The meeting brought together all members of the National Executive Committee (NEC), all chairpersons of the branch executive committees, all sitting ODM MPs, Governors and Deputy Governors.

Odinga’s fellow NASA co-principals Kalonzo Musyoka (running mate) and Musalia Mudavadi attended the convention as observers.

FORD-Kenya Leader and Senate Minority Leader Moses Wetangula and Chama Cha Mashinani and Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto sent their apologies for skipping the gathering which was attended by more than 4,000 ODM delegates as well as civil society activists.

Kenya

Police Disperse Protesting Polling Clerks

Presiding officers and clerks hired by Jubilee Party during the Nakuru County nominations on Friday staged a… Read more »

Featured Links

    Search Archive

    Search by Date
    Search by Category
    Search with Google
    Log in | Designed by Gabfire themes