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Archive for November 15th, 2010

He would sell his kidney for love….

Posted by Administrator on November 15, 2010

It is said that once you truly loved someone, you’d do anything in the world for him or her. Well, one man in Nyeri is perhaps doing more than just anything to profess his undying love for his sweetheart. You see, for Delphin Wamalwa to be with his beloved, he has to formally wed her. Unable to finance a wedding from his meagre earnings, he is prepared to sell one of his kidneys to be able to tie the knot with the love of his life. NTV’s Jane Kiyo has that unusual story of the love-struck man.


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Posted by Administrator on November 15, 2010

Many people are pointing out that the recently produced ad by Safaricom titled “Niko na Safaricom” was a rip off from a 2009 Qantas Airline advert produced in Australia. My question is why the furore whereas the producers of the ad may have simply taken an idea and made it better. I still love the advert and the content is great. See both adverts and you can give your opinion.



Though the ads seem similar, I still love the Safaricom ad and I think it was a brillian idea….but I stand to be corrected

Posted in Uncategorized | 9 Comments »


Posted by Administrator on November 15, 2010

A reader sent in this parody for sharing and I agree with her. Its hilarious……

********Sent in by a reader.***********


Sharp Drop in Kenyans Studying in US

Posted by Administrator on November 15, 2010

Kenyan students who lived in the US for a year, upon arrival at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi in July, 2009. Photo/MICHAEL MUTE

Kenyan students who lived in the US for a year, upon arrival at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, Nairobi in July, 2009. Photo/MICHAEL MUTE

The number of Kenyans enrolled in US varsities dropped sharply in 2009, causing the country to fall farther from the top spot it once occupied among African countries sending students to the United States.

A survey issued on Monday by the New York-based Institute of International Education reports that 5,384 Kenyans were studying in the US in the 2009-2010 academic year. That is 8.4 per cent fewer than the 5,877 who were registered in the previous year.

Nigeria now occupies first place among African countries. The number of Nigerians attending US universities rose 1 per cent last year to a total of 6,568.

Kenya ranks as the 22nd largest source of students coming to the United States. Nigeria is in 20th place. China holds the lead, with nearly 128,000 students seeking degrees in the United States — a 30 per cent increase in just one year.

The decline for Kenya may be linked to the increased cost of obtaining a US student visa. The price was raised in June by Sh700, reaching a sum of Sh11,200. The cost of a US visa in 2008 stood at Sh9000.

High Fees

Constant tuition increases at US universities may also be making it harder for Kenyans to study in the United States.

The total cost of attending a leading US varsity rises about 5 per cent a year, with the top destination for international students — the University of Southern California — now charging Sh4,578,368 per year for tuition, room and board.

More than half of the 25 top sending countries showed decreases last year in the number of their students attending US universities.

But the total of international students in the US rose 3 per cent last year to 691,000.

Africa is, meanwhile, emerging as an increasingly popular destination for Americans studying abroad. More than 13,500 US students were enrolled in African universities in 2009-2010 — a 15 per cent increase from the previous year.

South Africa is, however, the only country on the continent to rank as one of the top 25 destinations for American students. It holds the 13th spot, with the UK ranked as number one.

Source: Daily Nation

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Freed British couple happy to be alive

Posted by Administrator on November 15, 2010

Paul and Rachel Chandler at the Presidential palace in Mogadishu

Paul and Rachel Chandler at the Presidential palace in Mogadishu

MOGADISHU, Nov 15 – Paul and Rachel Chandler said they were “happy to be alive” after the Somali pirates who hijacked the British couple’s yacht near the Seychelles last year released them for a ransom.

The retired couple appeared in good health and smiled as they briefly spoke to journalists during a stopover in Mogadishu, on their way to Nairobi from the town of Adado where their 388-day ordeal came to an end earlier on Sunday.

“We are feeling very happy to be alive and happy to be here… among decent everyday people,” Rachel Chandler said, adding they were “desperate to see family and friends” and thanking the Somalis who worked for their release.

British Prime Minister David Cameron in a statement welcomed the pair’s release as “tremendous news”, thanked all those who contributed to their freedom and promised to swiftly reunite the couple with their family.

Instead of flying directly from Adado to the safety of Nairobi, where they landed in the evening, the pair left the country of their ordeal from war-torn Mogadishu, one of the world’s most dangerous cities.

After being greeted by officials at Somalia’s presidential palace, which has been routinely attacked by Al Qaeda-inspired insurgents in recent months, Rachel Chandler climbed back onto the plane wearing a red cap and fresh clothes.

Her husband Paul followed her after taking pictures on the tarmac.

They eventually landed at a military base in Nairobi, avoiding media attention, and were expected to be debriefed and undergo medical treatment at the British high commission in Kenya.

In Adado they were given breakfast and a chance to make phone calls and shower, hosted in the compound of Mohamed Aden “Tiiceey”, the president of the local self-styled administration of Himan and Heeb.

He contributed to the Chandlers’ release, together with Abdi Mohamed Helmi “Hangul”, a Somali surgeon who had already managed to see the pair in January.

“They look in relatively good health but they need to be checked,” Hangul told AFP from Adado.

Rachel Chandler explained there how they communicated with their captors using a Somali-English phrasebook.

The couple had been driven overnight from the town of Amara, where they spent most of their captivity.

Somalia’s newly appointed prime minister, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, said after greeting the Chandlers that the government, much in need of credibility, “exerted every humanly possible effort” to free them.

A deal was struck with the pirates this week and, according to Somali elders and sources close to the tortuous negotiations, a total of at least 750,000 dollars was paid in ransom.

The Chandlers’ plight generated considerable interest in Britain and became one of the most high-profile hostage cases in Somalia’s recent, troubled history but the British government has a strict policy of not paying any ransoms.

The money known to have been paid – a much smaller amount than what pirates have been earning from ship owners for cargo, fishing and other vessels – is believed to have been gathered by family and members of the Somali diaspora.

The pirates had initially demanded seven million dollars.

The Chandlers’ family in England issued a statement saying “it would be irresponsible to discuss any aspect of the release process as this could encourage others to capture private individuals” for ransom.

The Chandlers were kidnapped on October 23 last year, a day after leaving the Seychelles for Tanzania.

Abdi Yare, a senior pirate commander, expressed surprise that such a vulnerable boat “would have dared to venture out” at the peak of the piracy season, when he spoke to AFP shortly after the hijacking last year.

Somali sea-jackers prowling the region’s busy trade routes capture dozens of vessels each year to seek ransoms from large ship owners, but cases involving small yachts are rare.

Read more: http://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/Kenyanews/Freed-British-couple-happy-to-be-alive-10519.html#ixzz15MZ7IxXJ

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Is the Kenyan man suffering an identity crisis?

Posted by Administrator on November 15, 2010

Nairobi — Media reports these days would make one think there is a gender war in the country. In a matter of three days, about 15 Kenyans have lost their lives because some man or another was “jilted”, “betrayed”, “cheated” or “cheated on”. But can love alone, or lack of it, justify massacre?

Are Kenyan men suffering from an identity crisis, as most armchair analysts would say? Or it is just that society is directionless, with people lacking the skills and ken to deal with key issues and feelings such as love, trust, faithfulness, friendship, loss, poverty, etc.

Telling title

In 2009, Kwani? Trust published an anthology of poetry with a telling title: To be a Man, a title that I find quite relevant in reminding us about the status of Kenyan men.

The verses in this anthology deal with the vexed question of what it means to be a man in various ways.

There are those who, often cheekily, suggest that the “crisis of manhood” is an invention of modernity.

Others suggest it is as a result of the erosion of traditions that had always elevated and pressured a man to be successful, rich, well-educated, living in a good neighbourhood and be sophisticated.

Mboga Patroba in To be a Man captures the clichés, stereotypes and typologies: “What does it mean to be a man?/ Is it having a deep husky voice?/ Is it having big muscles, to tussle weaker men and handle ladies, addicted to the ever-changing/ media opinion on what makes a man sexy?”

Manhood means different things to different people, but what we urgently need to question is what it means to be a man and debate it in relation to how men are relating to women, how men live with and treat their daughters, sisters, wives, mothers, aunts, girlfriends or female colleagues, etc.

Evidence increasingly suggests that whilst men feel emasculated, women, beginning with girls, are victims of men’s violent acts; violence that supposedly underlines men’s anger and alienation.

In many parts of the world, girls are an endangered species. In India, for instance, the high cost of dowry when girls marry discourages families from bringing up daughters.

The state policy in China that recommends one child per family has generally seen couples favouring boys. In many parts of Africa, boys are still seen as the custodians of the family, clan or community heritage. They are supposed to carry the lineage.

Little or no valueWomen are spoken of and treated as strangers who will be married elsewhere and therefore have little or no value for the family and community.

This attitude towards women; this cavalier treatment of a larger proportion of our society, explains the very disturbing incidents of child molestation, rape of schoolgirls, arranged marriages which put pre-puberty girls into inescapable relationships with men the age of their grandparents, the economic disenfranchisement of married women who are denied their right to own or inherit property, the maiming of wives by husbands and endless media reports of the murder of women and girls by the men in their lives.

How has our society come to be like this? How can we continue to alienate, disempower and betray, knowingly or even unknowingly, so many women?

This is not to say that the boy-child and men are not victims of violence: it is simply to suggest that the sheer numbers of women whose lives are wasted in this country is untenable. How can society live so barbarically?

The violence that Kenyan women suffer should worry all and sundry in this country. This state of siege in which many Kenyan women live should prick our conscience and remind us of something valuable that we seem to be losing quite fast: our humanity.

Does this violence suggest just a collapse of a moral order or is it suggestive of a deeper problem; a problem of a seeming collective inability to recognise the human value of others?

We should be asking – whenever we read in the papers or watch on TV or listen to radio news of “another” baby girl raped by her father or woman killed by her husband – whether in our schools, churches, community groups or homes we are teaching the values of care, love and responsibility for others.

Objectified and ownedFathers, aunts, mothers, sisters, brothers, teachers, pastors, or social workers out there, are you insisting to the young, especially boys, that girls or women are more than just individuals to be sexually objectified and owned as girlfriends or wives?

Or to be spanked or killed when they do not do as men wish?

What then are we teaching our young men? What questions about the wellbeing of the society disturb the minds of our elders when they ponder the future of their children and grandchildren?

Do such ideals as kindness, compassion, sympathy, peace and love really mean anything any more if the lives of hundreds of Kenyan women, young and old, continue to be lost in such a casual manner?

How can wife-battering, rape, intimidation, or murder be the attributes that define a society; nay, that define our men? How can the tyranny of the few stalk the land so sinisterly?

Tom Odhiambo teaches literature at the University of Nairobi.

Source: Daily Nation

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Posted by Administrator on November 15, 2010

 mourner pays respects to Ivyn Ogendi at her funeral at St. Patrick's church in Jersey City on November 14, 2010. Michael T. Dempsey / The Jersey Journal

mourner pays respects to Ivyn Ogendi at her funeral at St. Patrick's church in Jersey City on November 14, 2010. Michael T. Dempsey / The Jersey Journal

Roughly 400 people including a Minnesota mayor attended an emotional memorial service yesterday in a Jersey City church for a Kenyan-born mom and her two children slain by the woman’s husband in their Minnesota home.

Photographs of Bilha Omare, 32, her son, Kinley Ogendi, 12, and daughter, Ivyn Ogendi, 9, were propped on three open caskets for the service at St. Patrick’s Church on Bramhall Avenue, which doubles as the parish for the Muungano Seventh Day Adventist congregation attended by the slain family’s next-of-kin.

The caskets were carried in a procession from Watson Mortuary Service yesterday afternoon where they are being held at no charge until they are buried Friday at Rosemount Memorial Park in Elizabeth at 10 a.m.

Members of the Omare and Mosongo families living in Jersey City had brought the bodies from Minnesota, wanting them to be buried today, but the interment was delayed because of a feud with the killer’s family, who wanted them buried in Kenya.

The U.S. embassy in Nairobi denied a visa for the 60-year-old mother of Bilha Omare and other family members to come to the United States for the burial.

Bilha Omare’s husband, Justus Ogendi Kebabe, 43, pleaded guilty to murdering his wife and children in the family’s home in Vadnais Heights, Minn., on Oct. 14.

Family friends and other mourners, including Vadnais Heights Mayor Susan Banovetz, said they struggled to make sense of the murders and pleaded with victims of domestic violence to come forward and report it to community and religious leaders.

Danvas Omare, of Jersey City, the brother of Bilha Omare said his sister, a nursing student who was to graduate in December, was denied her dream of becoming a nurse.

“In the past month we have cried until our last tear gland has dried,” Danvas Omare said. “That kind of man does not deserve to live in freedom in a free society.”

The family wants the bodies buried here so the couple’s surviving four-year-old daughter, Savannah, who is in the custody of the state of Minnesota, can have closure and a place to grieve.

“We brought her here because we love her,” said Peter Mosongo, the uncle of Bilha Omare. “We feel strongly that Savannah feels some kind of reference and some kind of connection.

Source: http://www.nj.com/news/jjournal/jerseycity/index.ssf?/base/news-11/128980593719380.xml&coll=3

Posted in Diaspora News, Kenya | 3 Comments »

Kenyan in US launches “twitter of dreams”

Posted by Administrator on November 15, 2010

Kim Muhota Founder and CEO of REMcloud. REMcloud is like a "twitter of dreams

Kim Muhota Founder and CEO of REMcloud. REMcloud is like a "twitter of dreams

By ANTONY KARANJA –Jambonewspot.com

When we have dreams at night, some of us usually shake them off when we wake up and get ready for the day. Kim Muhota however wants us to hold on to them a little bit longer and share them with the world.
REMcloud is like a “twitter of dreams.” It is being hailed by many tech-websites as a next generation website. Its Facebook page has over 1.4 million fans in little over 9 months. It provides users with an environment in which they share their dreams with the world and keep up with their friends’ dreams.
Though he started the Facebook page in February, Muhota the Founder and CEO of REMcloud officially launched the social networking site late last month.
Speaking to Jambonewspot.com, the US based Kenyan entrepreneur says the site enables its users to post a short account of their dreams in a similar fashion to Twitter, another social networking site.
Muhota who lives in Washington DC, says he decided to start this project after he observed his four and a half year old son for close to three years waking up every morning and narrating his dreams to his mother, former KTN News anchor Mukami Kinoti.
“I decided to start REMcloud because since my son was one and a half years old, he would walk into our room in the morning and start his day off by telling his mum and I about what he dreamt about at night.” Muhota said.
As this went on, Muhota and his wife started looking forward to finding out what their son dreamed about the night before.
Watching his son made Muhota wonder how many people would like to share dreams like his son does but may not have the avenue to do so. It was then that he knew he needed to a platform for people share their dreams.
When users post their dreams, REMcloud will analyze each keyword in the post and will then respond offering an automated interpretation of the dream. Muhota says that the interpretation relies on information selectively gathered from other websites that focus on dream interpretation. Some of the sites across the US that offer dream interpretations are Dream Moods and Dream Central.
Unlike Twitter which will only allow you to re-tweet a friends post, REMcloud gives its users the option to rate a friends dream, comment on a dream and offer your own interpretation of a friend’s dream.
Muhota who lives in Washington, DC believes that more features are on the way as his users increase. He believes that once he starts tracking a large number of dreams, he can then create a “mosaic of dreams.” This will be like a depository of human consciousness where the site tracks people who have the same dream especially in areas where certain events are happening. He points out area like Haiti which recently experienced and earthquake. The site will be showing “trending” or most popular dreams. He simply refers to this as dream aggregating.
Once users log on to the site, they will be able to view a stream of their friends’ dreams similar to Facebook’s “News Feed”. In the case of REMcloud, users will be viewing a “Dream Stream.”
40% of the site’s users are based in Asia, Europe and Latin America. Kenyans are also able to access the site as long as they have internet access.
“It is available to anyone whether in Nairobi or Frankfurt as long as you have internet connection.” Muhota says.
Muhota hopes to carry advertisements in the future but intends to utilize “intelligent in-context advertising” which is driven by relevance to a user’s dream. He does not intend to carry indiscriminate banners. He also hopes to offer subscription based services in the future after the site’s community establishes a certain behaviour on which he can build around.
Apart from REMcloud, Muhota previously founded a social lending company known as Pertuity Direct. Unfortunately, he had to stop all consumer lending operations due to the prevailing economic situation in the US.
According to this father of two, REMcloud will enable users to share unique experiences and he believes that sharing of dreams is a behaviour that needed a cohesive platform which he is now providing.
“Dreams are universal human experiences and whether it is a college freshman, middle aged man or woman or even soldiers, they all have unique dreams to share and REMcloud makes it easy to connect,” says Muhota.

Posted in Kenya_Technology | 2 Comments »

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