Posts tagged as: nakuru

Kenya: Nakuru County on High Alert After Malaria Outbreak in Baringo

By Magdalene Wanja

The Nakuru Health Department is on high alert following the outbreak of malaria in neighbouring counties that has led to more than 30 deaths.

No case has been reported in Nakuru so far.

PREVALENCE

Health Chief Officer Samuel Mwaura said Lower Subukia, Rongai and Solai have a high malaria prevalence.

“We are on the lookout just in case of an outbreak,” he said.

Dr Mwaura said that despite the nurses’ strike, the Health department had ensured emergency cases are attended to.

OUTBREAK

“Although most of the dispensaries are not operational due to the nurses’ strike, the Disease Surveillance System is still operational and ready for response,” he said.

Malaria outbreak has been reported in more than five counties – Baringo, Lamu, Marsabit, Turkana and West Pokot, with more than 700 people testing positive for the disease. Baringo neighbours Nakuru County.

Kenya

Duale to Seek MPs Approval of Sh11.5 Billion for Poll

Majority Leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale says he will be requesting MPs to approve the release of Sh11.5… Read more »

Nakuru Allstars Hold Wasteful Vihiga at Afraha

By Francis Mureithi

Runaway leaders Vihiga United dropped two vital points that might jeopardise their chances of gaining promotion to the SportPesa Premier League after settling for a barren draw with hots Nakuru AllStars in a midweek National Super League clash at Afraha Stadium, Nakuru on Wednesday.

The Edward Manoah-coached side should blame themselves after controlling the proceedings right from the first whistle.

Moments after referee Brasan Mamati blew for kick off, Vihiga -sponsored by the County Government of Vihiga – took the game to their opponent’s area but could not translate the early chances into goals.

Godfrey Airo, who was a constant threat, should have opened the scoring at the quarter hour mark but his blockbuster was cleverly blocked by Nakuru AllStars custodian Kelvin Opiyo.

Veteran midfielder Charles Okwemba then missed a sitter in the 28th minute with an empty goalmouth.

MASINZA MISSES CHANCE

Still dictating the pace, Chris Masinza missed yet another opportunity to give the visitors the lead five minutes into the break.

On resumption, AllStars coach Ezekiel Akwana introduced Robert Arot and Peter Mwangi for George Onyango and Sydney Lokale respectively.

The duo injected some energy on the AllStars, and the hosts launched a series of attacks but were equally wasteful.

With 15 minutes to time and the match begging for a hero, Baraka Jerome’s glancing header sailed over the crossbar, leaving the home fans stunned.

On the other end, Vihiga’s Ugandan forward Rashid Kyambadde dribbled deep into the AllStars box but his well taken shot missed the target.

“We had the lion’s share of the missed chances but our main undoing was poor finishing. The injury of Sydney Lokale also disorganised our set up,” Akwana said.

Manoah blamed his players for the draw.

“My boys are suffering from an over confidence crisis since we lost to AFC Leopards in the GOtv semi-finals,” said coach Manoah.

Vihiga United, who have now amassed 59 points, will play Police on Saturday at Karuturi sports grounds in Naivasha.

Kenya

Duale to Seek MPs Approval of Sh11.5 Billion for Poll

Majority Leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale says he will be requesting MPs to approve the release of Sh11.5… Read more »

Governors Want Bloom Back Into Pyrethrum Crop

By Francis Mureithi

A number of incoming governors are taking steps to revive the once rosy pyrethrum sector even as more firms seek the regulator’s permit to set up operations in Kenya.

Leading are Nakuru and Nyandarua, whose governments pledge to encourage more farmers to go back to the crop.

Nyandarua governor Francis Kimemia has assured investors that his government will set aside land for the construction of a pyrethrum factory for those interested.

“I want to revive the cash crop in the county as this crop is capable of employing thousands of unemployed youth while at the same time earning farmers good money that would improve their livelihoods,” said Mr Kimemia.

The governor said besides direct employment on the farms, the cash crop is capable of creating numerous opportunities along the value chain in transport, processing and export.

Another pyrethrum growing county, which has indicated its willingness to help farmers troop back to the farms is Nakuru.

Governor Lee Kinyanui has called on members of the county assembly to address the woes facing the sector and come up with winning strategies.

“This is a very critical sector and if well nurtured it has the potential to employ and improve economy of the county,” said Mr Kinyanjui.

The governor said research has shown that the region has the potential to grow enough pyrethrum for local and international markets.

“My government will work closely with the Pyrethrum Processing Company of Kenya in Nakuru, investors and farmers to make sure they get clean planting materials,” said Mr Kinyanjui.

The government has started issuing licenses to private processing firms in a bid to fill in the gap left by the underperforming Nakuru factory.

WELCOMED MOVE

Pyrethrum Processing Company of Kenya (PPCK) acting Managing Director Mr Paul Lolwerikoi welcomed the move to bring in more players in the sector.

He, however, noted that the regulator should level the playing field.

“We believe the high standards set by PPCK shall be maintained by all the new entrants to make sure Kenya regains its top position in the international market,” said Mr Lolwerioi.

Since devolution of agriculture, there has not been much effort by pyrethrum growing counties to revive the lucrative sub-sector.

To the few surviving farmers scattered across the country, the fruits of devolution are yet to trickle down.

The crop once referred as the black gold of Kenya as it used to earn the country in excess of Sh10 billion in foreign exchange a year is still in the intensive care unit.

During its hey days more than 200,000 farmers were planting the crop producing 20,000 metric tonnes of dry flower earnings them Sh8 billion.

At least more than three million people benefited from the venture and 3,000 workers were employed directly by the defunct Pyrethrum Board of Kenya (PBK) processing company in Nakuru.

However, today less than 20,000 farmers are engaged in the venture producing a paltry 300 metric tonnes annually while the largely dormant Nakuru factory is struggling to sustain 200 workers on its payroll.

The diminishing number of farmers who are stilling hoping that the crop will blossom again are crying for clean planting materials.

Kenya: Governors Want Bloom Back Into Pyrethrum Crop

By Francis Mureithi

A number of incoming governors are taking steps to revive the once rosy pyrethrum sector even as more firms seek the regulator’s permit to set up operations in Kenya.

Leading are Nakuru and Nyandarua, whose governments pledge to encourage more farmers to go back to the crop.

Nyandarua governor Francis Kimemia has assured investors that his government will set aside land for the construction of a pyrethrum factory for those interested.

“I want to revive the cash crop in the county as this crop is capable of employing thousands of unemployed youth while at the same time earning farmers good money that would improve their livelihoods,” said Mr Kimemia.

The governor said besides direct employment on the farms, the cash crop is capable of creating numerous opportunities along the value chain in transport, processing and export.

Another pyrethrum growing county, which has indicated its willingness to help farmers troop back to the farms is Nakuru.

Governor Lee Kinyanui has called on members of the county assembly to address the woes facing the sector and come up with winning strategies.

“This is a very critical sector and if well nurtured it has the potential to employ and improve economy of the county,” said Mr Kinyanjui.

The governor said research has shown that the region has the potential to grow enough pyrethrum for local and international markets.

“My government will work closely with the Pyrethrum Processing Company of Kenya in Nakuru, investors and farmers to make sure they get clean planting materials,” said Mr Kinyanjui.

The government has started issuing licenses to private processing firms in a bid to fill in the gap left by the underperforming Nakuru factory.

WELCOMED MOVE

Pyrethrum Processing Company of Kenya (PPCK) acting Managing Director Mr Paul Lolwerikoi welcomed the move to bring in more players in the sector.

He, however, noted that the regulator should level the playing field.

“We believe the high standards set by PPCK shall be maintained by all the new entrants to make sure Kenya regains its top position in the international market,” said Mr Lolwerioi.

Since devolution of agriculture, there has not been much effort by pyrethrum growing counties to revive the lucrative sub-sector.

To the few surviving farmers scattered across the country, the fruits of devolution are yet to trickle down.

The crop once referred as the black gold of Kenya as it used to earn the country in excess of Sh10 billion in foreign exchange a year is still in the intensive care unit.

During its hey days more than 200,000 farmers were planting the crop producing 20,000 metric tonnes of dry flower earnings them Sh8 billion.

At least more than three million people benefited from the venture and 3,000 workers were employed directly by the defunct Pyrethrum Board of Kenya (PBK) processing company in Nakuru.

However, today less than 20,000 farmers are engaged in the venture producing a paltry 300 metric tonnes annually while the largely dormant Nakuru factory is struggling to sustain 200 workers on its payroll.

The diminishing number of farmers who are stilling hoping that the crop will blossom again are crying for clean planting materials.

Kenya: M-Pesa Tap and Go Services Now in Five Towns

By Margaret Njugunah

Nairobi — Safaricom’s M-PESA tap and go service are now available in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret and Nyeri following four months of trial in Nakuru.

Company CEO Bob Collymore says the service is expected to facilitate faster and easier payments between Lipa na M-PESA merchants and their customers.

Some of the merchants where customers can make their payments using the new service include Shell petrol stations, Naivas supermarkets, KFC and KenolKobil.

Others include Choppies, Oil Libya, Total and Quickmart.

“Our decision to focus on petrol stations as a key launching pad is because there is where cash is used despite the dangers associated with carrying cash around. How many times have we heard about robbery incidences that cropped up due carrying cash around and using it especially at such stations?” Collymore asked during a press briefing at a Shell station along Kiambu Road.

To use the service, customers will have to obtain either an M-PESA 1 tap wristband, phone sticker or card which will allow payment integration with M-PESA 1 tap merchant terminals. The items will be available at Safaricom Shops and dealers at Sh20.

– How it works –

Vendors will simply need to key in the amount to be paid onto the M-PESA 1 tap point of sale device. Then they will tap their M-PESA 1 tap tag onto the point of sale device. Afterwards, the buyer will receive a pop up on their phone asking them to enter their M-PESA pin for the transaction to be processed.

“This innovation reduces the Lipa na M-PESA steps to three from the original eight steps.

Data by the Communications Authority of Kenya show that between April and June 2017, goods and services over mobile platform amounted to Sh692.1 billion which involved 316.5 million mobile commerce transactions.

The number of M-PESA transactions during the period under review was 380 million, valued at Sh903.6 billion.

In total, the report shows that there are 28 million active mobile money subscriptions while the number of agents was registered at 180,657.

Kenya

Duale to Seek MPs Approval of Sh11.5 Billion for Poll

Majority Leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale says he will be requesting MPs to approve the release of Sh11.5… Read more »

Kenya: Safaricom Now Evolves M-Pesa to the Next Level

By Muthoki Mumo

Safaricom #ticker:SCOM has launched its M-Pesa 1Tap payment card, wristband and stickers in five more towns, stepping up competition with banks for plastic card users.

The launch in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret and Nyeri comes after a pilot test in Nakuru unveiled in May this year.

Under M-Pesa 1Tap, customers have the option of using a card, a wristband or a sticker affixed to their phones to make payments. The three tags will be integrated to the customers’ M-Pesa accounts.

Users will make payments by tapping any of the tags to a retail point-of-sale and in-putting their M-Pesa PIN numbers on their phones following a real-time pop-up prompt.

Safaricom says M-Pesa 1Tap is ultimately intended to increase the efficiency of cashless transactions at retail outlets.

“This cuts down the steps involved from more than eight steps using the M-Pesa tool on SIM cards to just one step for the customer,” said the company in a statement.

Safaricom says 2,000 merchants have taken up the M-Pesa 1Tap service in Nakuru and more than 90,000 customers have used it.

Among those who have taken up the service include Shell, Naivas, Choppies, KenolKobil, Oilibya, Total and QuickMart. The service is, however, not yet available at all outlets run by these retailers.

Kenya

Duale to Seek MPs Approval of Sh11.5 Billion for Poll

Majority Leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale says he will be requesting MPs to approve the release of Sh11.5… Read more »

State – Stop Push to Eject IEBC Chiefs

By Joseph Openda

The State has urged the High Court in Nakuru to stop Nasa leaders from pushing for the removal from office of some electoral commission officials.

Attorney-General Githu Muigai in his submissions in a case in which 12 Nakuru residents have sued Nasa leaders, has termed the move to eject the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission officials as unconstitutional.

The petitioners, through lawyer Kibe Mungai, filed the case under certificate of urgency a week ago.

The petitioners are, among other things, seeking orders to restrain the opposition leaders led by Nasa presidential flag-bearer Raila Odinga from interfering with the operations of the electoral commission, as it plans for the repeat presidential election scheduled for October 26.

The AG, in his submissions through State Counsel Jennifer Gitiri, noted that Nasa’s actions are aimed at crippling the IEBC from performing its job as provided for by the Constitution

The AG argued that the move was unconstitutional and contrary to the findings of the Supreme Court, which nullified President Kenyatta’s victory last month.

“The Supreme Court was categorical that it is the IEBC, which is composed of commissioners, to conduct a fresh presidential election,” he said.

Kenya

Duale to Seek MPs Approval of Sh11.5 Billion for Poll

Majority Leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale says he will be requesting MPs to approve the release of Sh11.5… Read more »

High Court Gives Nasa More Time to Respond to IEBC Case

By Joseph Openda

The High Court in Nakuru has given the National Super Alliance (Nasa) five days to respond to a petition by twelve people seeking to block removal from office of some of the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission staff.

Justice Roselyn Korir allowed the opposition parties, the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), Wiper, Ford Kenya and Amani National Congress, more time to file their responses before the matter is heard in court.

“This is a matter of national interest and the parties need to be given time to file their own responses before the matter proceeds for hearing,” said Justice Korir.

URGENT CASE

The petitioners, who are residents of Nakuru, through lawyer Mungai Kibe, filed the case under certificate of urgency before the court last Wednesday.

They are seeking orders to restrain the Opposition leaders led by Nasa Presidential flag bearer Raila Odinga from interfering with the operations of the electoral body as they plan ahead of the repeat Presidential poll scheduled for October 26.

In the case, the Orange Democratic Movement, Wiper Party, Ford Kenya, Amani National Congress, IEBC and its chairman Wafula Wabukati, the Registrar of Political Parties and the Attorney General have been listed as respondents.

SPECIAL PROJECTS

The residents further want IEBC chairman Mr Chebukati restrained from forming a special projects team to conduct the polls.

The court however, heard that only the IEBC chairman, the Registrar of Political Parties and the Attorney-General had filed responses to the petition.

Mr Chebukati in his submissions opposed the petitioner’s prayers which sought to have him restrained from forming the new special projects team to oversee the repeat election.

They have accused Nasa of conspiring with the commission chairman to jeopardize the elections through establishment of the special project team which they argue is unconstitutional.

ILLEGAL

The petitioners have claimed that the Nasa leaders want to force the IEBC commissioners out of office through political campaigns and intimidation.

They want the court to declare demands outlined by Nasa through a document dated September 12, dubbed the ‘Irreducible Minimums’ before the fresh elections, null and void.

The twelve have accused the opposition leaders of conspiring with the commission chairman to jeopardise the election through the formation of the special project team which according to them is illegal.

In his response Mr Chebukati claimed to be acting within the law to put the commission in order as it prepares to conduct the fresh polls.

The petitioners led by Mr Frank Muhoro requested the court to give the matter utmost priority since the events surrounding their prayers keep on changing every day.

The case will be heard on October 3.

Kenya

Duale to Seek MPs Approval of Sh11.5 Billion for Poll

Majority Leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale says he will be requesting MPs to approve the release of Sh11.5… Read more »

Strike – Tough Times Ahead for Patients

The crisis in public hospitals is likely to worsen as some county governments gave the striking nurses a week to return to work or face the sack.

However, the nurses dug in saying they will not return to work without the Council of Governors signing the Collective Bargaining Agreement that improves their terms.

Private hospitals across the country are congested with an increasing number of patients seeking treatment.

JOBS

Some public hospitals said they were running out of essential drugs as the nurses’ strike enters its fourth month to demand better pay, allowances and working conditions.

Elgeyo-Marakwet Governor Alex Tolgos threatened to sack all striking health workers and advertise their jobs by next Monday.

“We are giving all the striking nurses up to Friday this week to get back to work,” Mr Tolgos said.

TALKS

In West Pokot, Governor John Lonyangapuo is set to meet the striking nurses on Tuesday in a bid to resolve the stalemate.

He cautioned politicians against inciting the workers not to resume duty.

“We are ready to hold talks with nurses. We don’t want our people to continue suffering,” he said.

Turkana Health executive Jane Adele said most health facilities in far-flung areas had received 90 newly employed nurses and health services are still ongoing.

THREAT

In Bungoma, Kenya National Union of Nurses branch secretary George Shibeka said he was hopeful the union’s talks with the governors will resolve the stalemate.

“The strike is still on and currently the union and Council of Governors are meeting under the Labour ministry to try and end the strike,” he said.

In Nandi, services are back to normal after Governor Stephen Sang brokered a deal with the nurses last week that saw them return to work.

In Nyeri, the union threatened to fine nurses who had gone back to work without the deal being signed.

According to branch secretary Beatrice Nduati, each nurse who had resume duty would be fined 2.5 percent of their monthly salary for the next four years.

PRIVATE HOSPITALS

Expectant mothers and newborns are the most affected by the strike.

A spot check in various public health facilities in Nakuru County, including the Nakuru Level Five Hospital and Molo sub-county hospital, revealed that a huge percentage of expectant mothers had been forced to pay up to Sh15,000 to get maternity services in private hospitals.

“Private facilities are too expensive for us. It has forced some of us to opt for home deliveries, which are not safe,” Ms Eunice Njoroge, a mother, told the Nation.

DOCTORS

In Narok, there were no admissions in most hospitals with patients being discharged to enable them seek services in private hospitals.

On Monday, only doctors were seen attending to patients and those who needed the services of nurses and clinical officers were turned away.

In Busia, nurses appealed to Governor Sospeter Ojaamong to prevail upon his colleagues to sign the CBA, saying they were ready to work.

However, Busia County Health Chief Officer Asoka Itur threatened to stop the nurses’ September salary if they failed to report to work.

REASONS

The situation was the same in Homa Bay, where nurses claimed governors were deliberately delaying the signing of the CBA.

In Kisii County, acting Health services chief executive Raymond Oigara said they were still awaiting communication from the county secretary before they write warning letters to the striking nurses.

“We will begin writing show-cause letters as soon as we get communication from the employing agency,” he said.

MEDICAL CAMPS

Some patients in Mombasa, Kwale and Taita-Taveta counties are now seeking treatment in Tanzania due to the health crisis.

Patients are also flocking to medical camps organised by charity organisations.

On Sunday, more than 1,500 people were treated during the Mabati Rolling Mills free medical camp at their Mabati Medical Centre in Kilifi.

Ex-MP Manyara Charged Over Hate Speech

Nakuru — Former Nakuru Town MP, David Manyara has been charged over hate speech.

Manyara who is the county Jubilee Party Chairman was charged with uttering words intended to cause violence between different ethnic communities.

Manyara who appeared before Chief Magistrate Bernard Muraro allegedly committed the offence on September 19 in Nakuru Town while addressing Jubilee followers.

He was arrested on Monday by the police and charged hours later.

He denied the charges and his lawyer, Karanja Mbugua asked the court to release him on bail.

“My client is not a flight risk, he volunteered to be investigated on alleged hate speech,” said Mbugua

He was released on a Sh300,000 personal bond or cash bail of Sh100,000.

The case is slated for a mention on September 27 to fix a hearing date.

Kenya

Duale to Seek MPs Approval of Sh11.5 Billion for Poll

Majority Leader in the National Assembly Aden Duale says he will be requesting MPs to approve the release of Sh11.5… Read more »

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