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Archive for November 6th, 2009

Kenyan Youths Wanted for a Documentary Film

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

A renowned producer/director, Dr. Vincent Morelli is looking to recruit 3 youths from each state to feature in a documentary exploring the cultural differences that exist between Kenyan and American youth. The search for this film is currently being held in Atlanta. No details have been released for the rest of the cities/states. Dr. Vincent Morelli is  the producer/director of the recent documentary, “Left behind: the Story of the New Orleans Public Schools” (www.neworleansleftbehind.com) is currently working on a documentary film, to be co-produced by National Geographic, exploring the cultural and social differences between Kenyan and American youth.
In this regard, Dr. Morelli is looking for teenagers who are Kenyan by nationality but who have been raised in the U.S., and adult professionals, born in Kenya, who are currently working for the juvenile justice system in the United States, to participate in the documentary.
The criteria to be met include:

  • Youth born in Kenya between ages 14-22 years;
  • Who have been raised in the U.S since the age of 3-5, and have absorbed US cultural values;
  • Who have not been back to Kenya since they were 3 – 5 years old; and are willing to travel to Kenya as part of the documentary.

If you are interested in participating in the documentary or know anyone who might be interested in participating, please contact Rosemary Mburu, AKPA’s Development Committee chair at rosemarymburu@hotmail.com

Additional information obtained from: www.diasporamessenger.com

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Ocampo cools off at Kenyan wildlife park

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 6 – International Criminal Court (ICC) Prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo spent Friday morning at the world famous Nairobi National Park, a day after he failed to convince the government to hand over post election violence cases to The Hague.

Mr Ocampo was accompanied by Justice Minister Mutula Kilonzo and other officials when he toured the animal orphanage and took a game drive.

At the orphanage, he came face to face with the three-month cheetah baby named “Lightning Bolt” that was recently adopted by Jamaican Sprinter Usain Bolt. 
Journalists tagged along during the morning tour but Mr Ocampo declined to respond to any questions.  His security detail ensured reporters were kept at bay.

Kenya Wildlife Service (KWS) Communication Officer Paul Udoto said: “Mr Ocampo showed keen interest in lions especially ‘Agwambo’, the eight-month old lion also adopted by the Prime Minister Raila Odinga last week during the launch of the Namayiana Wildlife Adoption programme by the Kenya Wildlife Service.

In a statement, he said Mr Ocampo was impressed that Kenya had a national park within the city of Nairobi.  “Mr Ocampo said he was fascinated by the sight of graceful giraffes, warthogs and two white rhinos.  The two rhinos were among 10 others that were recently moved from the Lake Nakuru National Park.”

Despite failing to accomplish his mission after the Kenyan government refused to refer investigations and prosecution of the suspected masterminds of the post election violence to the ICC, Mr Ocampo maintained a broad smile and looked relaxed throughout the drive and walk.

He was casually dressed in blue jeans, navy blue jacket and a light blue shirt.  He walked around the park with his hands in his pocket.

When his tour of the park ended, there was a scuffle between journalists and his Kenyan-assigned bodyguards who ensured they kept him guarded from all manner of queries.

He later had lunch at the Rangers Restaurant located within the park before being sneaked out to avoid the journalists who patiently waited for about one hour with the hope of getting a word from him.

The Chief prosecutor later indicated he would hold a news conference at the Windsor Golf and Country Club early on Saturday before departing for the Netherlands.

President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Raila Odinga on Thursday declined to refer the Kenyan case to the ICC prompting Mr Ocampo to indicate he would seek for approval from the ICC pre-trial Chamber to commence investigations next month.

SOURCE–CAPITAL FM

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Kenya gets new telecom firm

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 6 – The Communications Commission of Kenya (CCK) has awarded three licenses to Gateway Communications, a provider of carrier and business network solutions which will allow it to build infrastructure and deliver telecommunications services to end users in Kenya.

The firm’s management said on Friday that the Network Facilities Provider (NFP) Tier 2 Licence, Application Services Provider (ASP) license and its Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) license further provided them with the drive to build a pan-African connectivity network that covers every major African city based on satellite, submarine cable and terrestrial infrastructure.

“The awards mean that the leader in pan-African telecommunications can build infrastructure to undertake the construction, installation and operation of electronic communications systems in Kenya,” said Gateway East Africa Managing Director Silvio do Carmo.

Gateway now has a fully redundant Multi Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) backbone on SEACOM in Kenya, which interconnects South Africa, Mozambique, Tanzania, Kenya and Europe.

“Gateway can now provide direct connectivity for businesses from Kenya to South Africa, Mozambique, Tanzania, as well as Europe and the US, with our MPLS network,” added Mr do Carmo.

He added that the Gateway will continue to invest in infrastructure in East Africa and was installing its own satellite teleports in Kenya.

The company is also building two terrestrial teleports in Nairobi to offer national and international connections for sectors such as banking, mining and retail and has already reinforced fourth layer layer power back-up system.

Gateway opened an office in Kenya at the beginning of 2009 to work with major customers in East Africa, with increasing demand for pan-African communications.

“Kenya has always been considered the hub of East Africa, which means a lot of multinationals are headquartered in Nairobi, but require reliable communications up and down the East Coast,” the MD added.

Gateway was one of the first investors in SEACOM, the 13,700 km under-sea cable, connecting South Africa, Mozambique, Madagascar, Tanzania, and Kenya with India and Egypt that is bringing high-speed connectivity to East Africa for the first time.

“Opportunities abound in East Africa and we are very excited about the prospect for more and better connectivity improving access to education, information and global networks.

It connects over 583 million people in over 40 African countries, working in partnership with the continents leading mobile phone operators.

“We are committed to developing long term communications solutions and investing for the long term in the communities where we operate,” he added.

CAPITAL FM

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Kenya’s street teens struggle to survive

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

Streetchildren

Nairobi, Kenya (CNN) — On a wet dawn in Nairobi, Kenya, Joan stands on a grubby patch of concrete she calls home. As shopkeepers tear open their iron shutters to start their day, she gingerly touches her bruised face with her fingertips. Even for a hardened street teenager like Joan it’s been a rough night. “Living in the streets, especially if you are a girl, is very risky,” says Joan, age 19. “You can be raped any day, any time, by anyone who wants to do it.” Joan became the target of one of those predators just one night earlier when she says an older street kid tried to rape her. In a monotone voice she describes how he mercilessly beat her with his fists and heavy boots when she resisted. Joan spent the rainy night in pain lying on her flattened cardboard box. This is Joan’s reality. It is a reality she shares with thousands of others. More than 60,000 children and youth live on Nairobi’s streets, according to various charity groups. Tens of thousands are at risk of ending up there. Unlike some other cities in Africa, Nairobi’s street people aren’t always visible. They are banished to the gray industrial parts of the city, often harassed by police, business owners and ordinary citizens. The way Joan’s homelife became the street life is, in many ways, the story of how a generation of African youth end up without homes. At 15, Joan worked as a maid in a town a few hours from Nairobi. But she says the owner abused her and got her pregnant. In a fit of jealousy, Joan says the owner’s wife threw her out of the house and she ran away to the capital out of shame and desperation. Finding herself among people wracked by poverty but bound by common struggles, Joan learned to beg with her baby from cars stuck in traffic and struggled to keep warm on rainy nights. She and her newborn survived together for more than a year on the streets but she eventually sent him to live with her mother. Somehow, she says, she has managed to hide her street life from her family. “I don’t belong here. It is shameful everybody knowing that you are on the street,” says Joan. Street kids form their own tight-knit groups. Joan is part of a small community who do what they can to help each other survive by sharing food, clothes and money. “We see that the rest of the community hates us,” says Joan. “We ask ourselves if the community is not taking care of us, we should remain as our own family.” That often means sheltering each other from the violent streets. Just a day before she was attacked, Joan took a boy who had been injured in a fight to the hospital. Now it is her turn. A friend lends her a faded green shawl to cover her swollen face and a Joan limps off to find a Matatu bus, Kenya’s ubiquitous people carrier, to ferry her for treatment. A tear trickling down her eye is the only betrayal of her pain. The clean wards and tender words are a brief respite for Joan. The doctor says there is no major damage and gives her some painkillers in a brown paper bag. All Joan can do is head back to her patch on the street. Despite her daily struggles to survive, Joan refuses to return to begging and instead turns to dealing. To make enough money to help her son, she sells highly addictive glue to young street kids. Sitting on a broken piece of concrete below the edge of the Globe Roundabout, Joan sells liquid glue from a water bottle to ragged children at 10 Kenyan shillings a hit. They stumble over barefoot to Joan and she tops their bottles up with an inch of the toxic substance. The street kids sniff the glue into oblivion. After a while, a small group of boys gather around Joan with the vacant look of wasted futures. “You know that you are doing an illegal business,” she says. “You feel that you are spoiling someone’s life. But the circumstances we are in are forcing you to do it.” The harsh urban realities of Africa give Joan no other choice, she says. She dreams of being an actress or a musician and says she wants to go back to high school. But survival is her goal while she’s living on the streets. “I feel bad and I feel maybe hated and I feel that life doesn’t belong to me, but according to me and according to my lifestyle and according to my determination, I have never allowed myself to be a victim of my situation.”

WATCH VIDEO HERE

CNN VIDEO: Kenya Street Teens Struggle To Survive

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Gang grabs Sh40m in Kenya robbery

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

 

NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 6 – Four people including two Administration Police (AP) officers were arrested late on Friday over the theft of some Sh40 million which disappeared while on transit to Juba, South Sudan.

The cash had just been collected from a bank in Westlands when it disappeared, and the G4S security van carrying it found abandoned on Chemelil Road in Ngara.

An escort saloon car was left outside the bank with the two APs and a G4S driver who were arrested.

The fourth person arrested is a G4S employee who claimed that he was left behind when he alighted to adjust a side mirror of the van as it approached Ngara before it sped off with the driver and an AP on board.

“We have arrested the four, we are now looking for the driver of the van and the AP. They both abandoned the vehicle in Ngara and fled but we have not been able to locate them,” Flying Squad chief Julius ole Sunkuli said.

The security van was found abandoned in Ngara without the money.

Mr Sunkuli said they were questioning those arrested to ascertain if they played a part or had any information that will help in the investigations.

Another senior officer told Capital News the two AP officers and the G4S driver of the escort car claimed they failed to follow the van immediately it was loaded with money at the bank because the driver realised he did not have the right ignition key.

The driver claimed the key he was using was substituted as they waited for the money to be loaded in the van.

He reportedly told police that he realised the key at the ignition could not start the vehicle immediately they boarded it and that is when he communicated to the security firm’s headquarters.

The fourth person arrested also told police the van sped off but he was asked to alight and adjust a side mirror, only to see the vehicle speeding off with cash on board.

G4S Director of Sales and Marketing Betty Keitany-Koech later sent a statement to newsrooms saying the security van was laoded with US$300,000.

“G4S communications centre reported the disappearance of vehicle at around 13.45 pm today (Friday). The vehicle was to head to G4S from a cash collection from a customer premises in Westlands area,” she said in the statement.

And added: “The latest information is that the vehicle has been found.”

She did not state if the money had been recovered.

In another e-mailed statement, she stated that “ this was forex on its way to Juba.”

Those arrested were being interrogated at the Parklands Police station where police indicated they would spend the night in custody as investigations got underway.

Witnesses at Ngara where the G4S security van was found abandoned said they saw the AP and the driver of the vehicle alight before they walked to different destinations.

“The AP was in uniform and he asked me if there were taxis around. I directed him where he can find one but he did not follow that direction. I also saw him replacing his phone SIM card,” a witness who asked not to be named said.

All the witnesses interviewed did not state if they saw the two men offloading cash from the van that was found empty.

In September, Sh25 million was stolen in an almost similar robbery that occurred at Yaya Centre.

Six Administration Police officers and four regular police were sacked at the time and arraigned in court where they were charged over the theft of Sh33 million.

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Kenya floods could hit 750,000 people

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

GENEVA, Nov 6 – The United Nations warned on Friday that up to three quarters of a million people could be hit by floods and landslides brought about by torrential rainfall in Kenya.

“There are fears that up to 750,000 people in Kenya may be affected by flooding and landslides from the enhanced rains caused by El Nino weather phenomenon between October and December,” said Elisabeth Byrs, spokeswoman for the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs.

“The rains usually peak in November,” she added.

Six people have been killed in floods and landslides from recent downpours, and another 4,600 people along the Indian Ocean coast and northeastern region of Kenya have been displaced.

Byrs said the Kenyan government and aid agencies have stocks of food, water purification tablets and mosquito nets and other contingencies in place.

However, “tents are lacking, as well as shelter for these people,” she added.

“The flooding has brought about interruptions in the delivery of humanitarian aid, including those for refugees,” said Byrs.

Among those hit are some 338,000 refugees in two camps in Kenya, said UN refugee agency spokesman Andrej Mahecic.

Mahecic said the office of the UN High Commissioner of Refugees (UNHCR) needed 2.8 million dollars to secure fuel, blankets, plastic sheets as well as to fund disease outbreaks.

“We fear the looming El Nino phenomenon …. may now threaten the 338,000 mostly Somali refugees in the two camps, which in any case usually are flooded for three months every year,” he said.

Mahecic said the agency had begun digging trenches and placing sandbags around hospitals and other key locations in the camps.

“We are also preparing to locate to higher ground within the camps refugees who might be worst affected by the floods, particularly the chronically ill, disabled people, the elderly and children and teenagers on their own,” he added.

Asked why the camps were constructed in flood-prone areas, Mahecic said the land was given by the government. “There is very little choice on where you can put a camp,” he added.

Source: Capital FM

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Rights body: Mungiki man death “assassination”

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

In Summary

Mr Njuguna had visited KNCHR offices two weeks ago expressing fears that his life was in danger.

Kenya top human rights lobby has termed Thursday’s killing of Mungiki spokesman Njuguna Gitau Njuguna “an assassination.”

Officials at the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights said that the Mr Njuguna had visited their offices two weeks ago expressing fears that his life was in danger.

And they provided records of his October 16 one-hour visit from three p.m.

Vice Chairman Mr Hassan Omar and Commissioner Anne Njogu said the manner of his death raised lots of questions.

“It was a well planned and well thought of idea that took lots of time to execute…it was an assassination,” said Ms Njogu while addressing a news conference at the commission’s headquarters in Nairobi.

Said Mr Omar: “How do you just kill someone in the middle of one of the city’s busiest streets then walk away as if nothing had happened. Its a high time security officials got to the bottom of this.”

Similar sentiments have also been made by lawyer Paul Muite.

Mr Njuguna was felled by unknown assailants inside a mobile shop in the city’s Luthuli avenue.

Witnesses say the bullet tore through his eye and stomach, killing him instantly.

The Vice Chair said although his encounter with Njuguna at their offices was brief, he was clearly informed that officers from the dreaded Kwekwe squad were after his life.

The Kwekwe squad was established a few years ago to deal with the Mungiki, but police insist that it was disbanded earlier this year.

“I was in a hurry leaving the office so we did not speak much…but we agreed that we would meet a few days later to discuss the matter in detail. This was never to be,” said Mr Omar

“But I asked him whether it was true it was really the Kwekwe squad that was after his life since police claim it had been disbanded but he told those were lies. The squad was still in operation.”

Police have since distanced themselves from the shooting.

Internal Security PS Francis Kimemia said on Thursday reports from his officers on the ground had indicated that Njuguna had been arguing about money with two other men.

“Police are on full alert. They will track down and know who did it. It is very easy to blame the police but let the law enforcers investigate the matter first.”

Mungiki has been accused of waging a campaign of bloodshed and extortion, the latest being the massacre of dozens of villagers in Mathira, Central Kenya in April.

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With all this sex abuse, where shall we hide our daughters?

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

By LUCY ORIANG’ Posted Thursday, November 5 2009 at 16:48

 

One quote sticks out in the debate on schoolgirl sex abuse. It belongs with the chairman of the national association of parents, Mr Musau Ndunda. He reportedly said, at a forum to debate the Teachers Service Commission report released this week, that the 12,000-plus pregnancies could be blamed on school trips, posting of unmarried men to girls’ schools and evening classes that run late.

 

 

He capped it all with the killer question: “Some male teachers even escort the girls to their homes after tuition. What then is expected?” I have waited in vain to hear from male teachers objecting to the idea that they are such weak-willed and sex-crazed creatures that they will drop their pants any time and any place — and that any female will do. But the day is not over yet, and the lines of communication remain open.

 

 

This argument poses a major problem. It sets the stage for a worldview that reduces men to creatures incapable of thinking above the belt. It also lets them off the hook. If that is the case, then all females must presume that they are under siege and proceed with caution in any encounter with the other side, assuming that all males are potential rapists behind the civilised veneer.

 

 

That may not necessarily be a bad idea, given the situation under discussion, and it will be important at some stage to look critically at how to equip girls and women with the skills and strategies to protect themselves from sex pests who will not keep their hands and other body parts to themselves.

 

 

Twelve thousand may be just the tip of the iceberg, after all. Given the stigma that girls and women who are abused have to live with, the reality could be more damning. Just recently, a local television station ran a story about a school where 55 girls or so had fallen pregnant in a year. No matter the enrolment, that is a number that should get right-thinking adults to sit up.

 

 

The Ndunda argument offers criminals the “temptation” defence that turns women into objects that should be grabbed just because they are there. All teachers are presumed to be above 18 — at which point Kenyan law presumes they are adults capable of making rational decisions and controlling their desires, for heaven’s sake.

 

 

It is unlikely that we will have a situation where our schools can be single-sex all the way from students to teachers and support staff, so where does that leave the education system?

 

 

WE REALLY MUST MOVE AWAY FROM these attempts to pathologise men and present them as universally hard-wired to be sex predators. Criminals must be held accountable for their actions without resort to tired arguments about what it means to be a man.

 

 

There should be no room for special pleading when we have laws to address these things. I have yet to hear any advocate argue that a client should get away with stealing a car because it was parked in plain view of passers-by, looking sexy and enticing. Lock up those who prey on children and throw away the keys. We have internalised this woman-as-temptress argument so solidly that it colours our attitude to every single case of sexual assault and exploitation in this country. The first line of questioning a survivor can expect is to do with what they did to deserve it.

 

 

They will look at the way you were dressed, where you were and what you were doing out at that time — even your looks may become a bone of contention, for all we know. Behind the statistics, there is a culture of impunity that dates beyond the days I was a little girl wondering bitterly why anyone should be made to read so many books. We saw older girls drop off at regular intervals, followed by whispers that they had caught a ball.

 

 

This latest survey, conducted jointly by the TSC and the Centre for Rights Education and Awareness proves that the sick guys will not stop playing hardball for one simple reason: They will not pay the price. The teachers involved in these scandalous goings-on are not victims of temptation. They have sex with the students in their care because they have no respect for women and girls — and because they will get away with it as the TSC stumbles through mind-boggling bureaucracy.

 

 

Behind these statistics are stories of skewed power relations and half-hearted attempts to deal with a problem that refuses to be wished away. Schoolgirl abuse and pregnancy is in effect an industry worthy of academic pursuit only, and massive volumes of papers have been written on the subject. Other countries have pushed the boundaries and managed to rein it in to some extent. But we wring our hands and advance excuses pretending to be legitimate arguments. What then is to be expected, indeed?

 

 

oriang.lucy@gmail.com

 

 

 

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Woman discovers she’s allergic to her husband… on their wedding night

Posted by Administrator on November 6, 2009

Mike and Julie Boyde

Mike and Julie Boyde

A new wife was given a nasty wedding night surprise when she discovered she was allergic to her husband’s sperm.

Mike and Julie Boyde had been going out for two years when they got married and decided to have unprotected sex for the first time that evening.

But almost immediately the bride was in unbearable pain – and eventually they discovered it was because of Mike’s sperm.

Now they have been forced to abandon their plans of conceiving a baby as it seems her own body destroys the sperm.  

Mike, 27, and Julie, 26, from Ambridge, Pennsylvania, started going out while at university and became engaged two years later, finally having a dream wedding in 2005.

But following the reception, as they enjoyed their first night as a married couple, things went badly wrong.

‘Before we were always very careful and used protection – this time we didn’t,’ said Julie, 26.

‘We figured, “we’re married, if we get pregnant, we get pregnant”.’ 

But she added: ‘Pretty much right after I knew something was not right because I was in a lot of pain.

‘The pain that I was feeling was inside, like somebody sticking needles up inside of me like a real painful burning.

‘It was really scary.’

The pain, and at times blisters, would go on for weeks, she said.

‘On a scale of one to ten, it’s pretty much ten,’ she said, describing the pain.

After numerous tests and doctors visits, the couple were eventually told that Julie suffers from seminal plasma hypersensitivity.

Dr Andrew Goldstein said: ‘The body recognizes the sperm as a foreign protein, like it would recognize a peanut allergen or a pollen so you have swelling, you have itching, you have inflammation of the nerve endings.’

It means that her body attacks Mike’s sperm, making it inactive.

The discovery shattered their plans to conceive.  But now, after a treatment failed, they have started adoption proceedings.

The couple are featured in a Discovery Health documentary called Strange Sex, airing in the U.S. this week.  

Source: www.dailymail.co.uk

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