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Archive for December 18th, 2010


Posted by Administrator on December 18, 2010

This is the video my new Christmas song – “One Last Christmas.” This song is inspired by the true story of the Locke family and their son Dax.

At just thirteen months old, little Dax was diagnosed with a rare form of Leukemia. He was given two bone marrow transplants as a part of emergency treatment; one from each of his parents. The doctors then told his parents that Dax would most likely not make it to see Christmas.

This song is about the love of a family, and the coming together of an entire community to make sure that this little boy could have one last Christmas. His dad, determined that his son would see Christmas, put up the decorations early. The neighborhood caught on, and did the same. The whole town soon followed suit. A website was built telling his story. Soon, pictures were sent from all over the world of Christmas decorations that had been put up in his honor.

Dax did lose his battle with Leukemia, but not before he got to see one last Christmas. Today, this little boy’s legacy lives on, and his parents are making sure it does. They were so touched by the care they received from St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital, that they now have a desire to raise enough money to run the entire hospital for one day in honor of their son, Dax. The total cost to run St. Jude’s for one day is $1.6 million dollars. Already, they have raised a quarter of a million dollars.

This Christmas, it is on my heart to join forces with the Locke family, and help them in their cause. I would like to encourage you to join us in raising money that will go to an amazing cause in St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital that cares for so many children each year.

You can now get this video by donating at:

Together, we can reach this goal — and fund St. Jude’s for an entire day in Dax Locke’s memory!

-Matthew West



Posted in Announcements, Charity | Comments Off on HELP SPREAD A CHRISTMAS CHEER FOR CHILD IN A CHILDREN’S HOME

Former employee wins dismissal suit

Posted by Administrator on December 18, 2010

 Ms Fridah Gacheri Mugambi (right) after the ruling. The court directed her former employer to compensate her for unlawful sacking.

Ms Fridah Gacheri Mugambi (right) after the ruling. The court directed her former employer to compensate her for unlawful sacking.

An unwritten company rule, described by a judge as oppressive and unreasonable, restricted employees from using a vehicle acquired through company loan, with their family members. Again, the car could not leave the confines of Nairobi.

Narrating her story soon after a judge at the Industrial Court declared her sacking unlawful, Ms Mugambi could not hide her joy. “I am happy with the decision. I hope it will not happen to others,” she said.

Ms Mugambi, a mother of two worked for Booksfirst company Ltd as a supervisor for nine years before her sacking in August last year. Her troubles started when she bought a car belonging to the company’s general manager Anne Randiki for Sh600,000.

In the agreement, the car would be paid for through deductions from her salary. By the time she left her job, she had repaid Sh500,000.

The company would deduct Sh10,000 every month until payment in full. Ms Mugambi said that when she was about to deliver her second baby, the car was forcibly repossessed from her because it was wrong for her to park the vehicle at her home.

While it was being repossessed, she thought the car would be safely parked at the company offices until she returned but she was shocked to discover that the vehicle was being used to ferry company materials outside Nairobi and for running office errands.

She was given back the vehicle and she had to do repairs worth Sh65,000. Her employer refused to refund the money.

Another shocker awaited Ms Mugambi in August last year when her father was taken ill in Isiolo town.

Because she could not raise about Sh67,000 required for the hospital bill, she asked her colleagues to help raise the money.

“It was a tradition among us to assist each other,” she said, adding that for employees who did not have money, would pledge to donate but the money would taken from the office petty cash. The money would be recovered from employees salaries at the end of the month.

She managed to raise Sh55,000 and took Sh30,000 from the office kitty and headed for Isiolo. She drew a cash voucher from the till and got authorisation from the general manager, Ms Randiki.

She left Nairobi using her car but on reaching Thika town, she received a call from Ms Randiki demanding that she leaves the car in Nairobi for office use.

“I said it was impossible because I was on my way to see my father but the following day a driver was sent to pick the vehicle from my home,” she said. She was also threatened with the sack while being accused of stealing Sh30,000.

She was later called by policemen from Kileleshwa Police Station asking her why she ran away with the company vehicle.

“They gave me 30 minutes to return the car,” she said.

She drove back to Nairobi and upon consulting officers at Central Police station, she drove the car to Karen police station, a station near her work place at Ngong road.

When she reported two days later, she was dismissed. Among the reasons for her sacking was that she allowed her husband to drive the ‘company car’.

“The truth is that he never drove the vehicle. On occasions that I worked until late in the night, he would hire a taxi and follow us home. But not in my vehicle,” she said.

Reasonable rules

In his ruling, Justice Paul Kosgei said it was not true that Ms Mugambi stole the money. The judge that Ms Mugambi prepared vouchers for accounting purposes.

“It was wrong for the respondent to exercise rights of control and management over a car yet its role in the acquisition was that of a financier. Its action was akin to those of a mortgage exercising rights of foreclosure under a mortgage before any default on the part of the mortgagor,” he said.

The judge added that whereas employers were at liberty to formulate rules to govern their relations with employees, they have a duty to formulate reasonable rules which take into account the interests of both employers and employees.

M Justice Kosgei ordered that she be paid damages for unlawful loss of employment, accrued leave days and special damages. The court also ordered she be refunded money deducted from her for the TV set.

Source: http://www.nation.co.ke/News/Former%20employee%20wins%20dismissal%20suit%20%20/-/1056/1074430/-/item/0/-/x86cdl/-/index.html

Posted in Kenya | Comments Off on Former employee wins dismissal suit

Unhappily married ever after

Posted by Administrator on December 18, 2010

The one way to arrest such an unhappy union is to be very sober and independent while choosing marriage partners. Photo/FILE

The one way to arrest such an unhappy union is to be very sober and independent while choosing marriage partners. Photo/FILE

When I wrote recently about women who cheat on their husbands as a punishment for neglecting them, I got a barrage of protest from many men.

They protested that the story implied that only women are lonely when marriages do not work, or that men are always to blame for failed relationships.

Two of the complaints especially caught my attention; one from a man who wanted to be hooked up with one of the women I interviewed because, although he insists he still loves his wife, he was constantly denied sex.

He figures, since the only thing lacking in his marriage is bedroom action, if he could get that elsewhere, he would feel complete.

The second one was from a man who has been married for eight years but has never known a moment of happiness in his marriage.

I bring you the stories of the two men, who, judging from the other replies, are testimony that it is not always a walk in the park for men.

*Musyoka wanted me to hook him up with one of the ‘married and lonely’ ladies because, according to him, they meet specifications of the kind of woman he is looking for; unhappily married and not ready for a divorce, moneyed, driving and beautiful.

He wants them married as it means they would not demand more time from him than he can give. That they have money is also a plus as he is not willing to spend large amounts of money on them – his money, according to him, is for his family; that they drive means he would not have to pick them or drop them home after a clandestine date. “All I want is somebody to take care of my physical needs,” he asserts.

His wife of four years gave birth two years ago. Ever since, their sex life has been fast heading south. “My wife, who is my best friend and whom I love very much, completely went off sex. Whenever I try to get some, she says she does not feel like.

“She only lets me near her once a month, and every time I feel like, I just get it whether she feels like or not. I am tired of feeling guilty, I have all along remained faithful, but sex once a month is just not enough for me – maybe if she was a willing participant, it might be different, but she has turned me into an unwilling rapist,” he laments.

*Musyoka’s attempt to involve her best friend bore no fruit, as she asked to be given time, but according to him, two years is more than enough time.

Divorce is the last thing he wants as he still views her as the love of his life, and he hopes one day she will change and start enjoying intimacy with him. According to him, in certain circumstances it is okay to cheat on a partner as he is not willing to lose his marital status or be separated from his child.

“I am fed up of torturing her with sex.” He says. “If or when I get mpango wa kando, I am determined to continue taking care of my family financially and emotionally. To tell you the truth, the only thing that is lacking in our marriage is sex, and if I can get that somewhere else, the tension will be over and we will be happier.”

*John’s story is quite different. Unlike *Musyoka, he does not love his wife anymore, and he wants out. The only problem is, he does not have the option of mpango wa kando, and divorce is not going to be so easy.

*John is a pastor in the city leading a large flock. Divorce would mean the end of his career, or as he puts it, his calling. “How would I do marital counselling while my own marriage is over, who would take me seriously?” he laments.

He is not interested in mpango wa kando as that is against his faith, but he has reached the end of his tether. Nine years ago, he met his wife who was a member of his congregation; she was the perfect wife material; Christian, volunteered as a Sunday school teacher, mature and always had a kind word for everyone.

They courted for a year before tying the knot. That was when hell’s doors opened with a vengeance.

“As soon as we went for our honeymoon, she changed immediately. She did not want to have sex with me, she did not want to talk to me and when she did, if it was not in monosyllables, she would be insulting me by telling me how bad I was in bed but in my opinion, how can I give good sex when she keeps injuring me emotionally, and even if I do not know how to do it, why not sit like two adults and discuss how I can improve? For a long time, I thought there was something I must have done to make her hate me so much, but for the life of me, I cannot think what.”

Matters have gone from bad to worse. “She does no longer goes to church, she does not wash my clothes, she has kicked me out of our matrimonial bed and she keeps pushing me to the wall at every turn. I suspect she is doing this to start a fight or to make me hit her so she can run to my bosses or to court. Several times she has asked them to give me the sack, that I have not been a good husband to her. I do not understand how someone who once professed to love me can now hate me so much.”

“Once in a while, she will want to sleep with me. But only when she feels like it. It is so mechanical it leaves me feeling used and dissatisfied. If I talk to female members of the congregation and she gets to know about it, she gets upset. My job requires me to talk to a lot of people, sometimes I have to visit them at home – she does not want that.

“If I come home after seven in the evening, I get the silent treatment, she will not serve me food, and she locks me out of the bedroom. I do not know what to do, I live day by day, thank God I have my daughter who gives me a reason to live, otherwise, I would be in some mental hospital by now.”

*John has tried all avenues to soften his wife’s attitude. He dragged her to counselling which did not help, he has tried friends and the result has been more insults as she demands to know why he is talking about their affairs to the public.

“Now, I go to counselling alone just to keep sane. I asked her once whether she regretted marrying me but she did not answer. I wish she could just tell me what it is she hates so much about me, and then I would know where to start.

“For now, I just have to swallow the bitter pill that she is, because the laws of God about marriage, the one of ‘till death do us part’, bind me to her. The church will not let me divorce her anyway, although God knows it is what I want more than anything else right now. I cannot begin to tell you how utterly lonely I am in this marriage!”

Although the two stories cover a lot about the reasons why a lot of married men are unhappy, we asked a few other men what would make them unhappy in their marriages.

“If my wife denied me my conjugal rights, then I would be very unhappy. When you marry someone, sex is part of the contract and breaking that part of the contract gives me a go-ahead to look elsewhere, or leave her.” Njoroge, a 37-year-old father of two, states categorically.

“Cheating.” James puts in. “Cheating on me would be the greatest sin of all. I am a one woman man, and I do my best to accommodate her both physically and mentally. If she cheated on me, it would not be because I have neglected her, it would be because she has very high demands, demands I could not meet even if I wanted. That would really devastate me. It is paramount also that we have regular sex.”

Michael had a host of reasons why he would be unhappy with his wife. “If she was wasteful, I would be very unhappy. Just because I have money does not mean she should have a new dress and a pair of shoes for every Sunday.

“If she used sex as a weapon to bend me her way, that would also be a big issue. Wastage of any sort is a no-no for me as I grew up in poverty. If she was a regular drinker, I would have my misgivings as I do not drink.

“I am a humble person, and when I am unhappy, I like to talk it out, so if she gave me the silent treatment, I would not take it kindly. However, I would not let her make me miserable for long; I would walk out without a second thought.”

We spoke to Rev John Kamau on whether it is ever right to divorce if you are unhappy in your marriage. The Bible is clear on the fact that God hates divorce, but even the church appreciates that, some situations demand that spouses separate for a while.

If there is violence in marriage, it would be unfair to expect the abused to sit and wait to be killed but in unfaithfulness, the church encourages the couples to settle their differences, so as to set good examples to their children and guard the marriage institution.

The one way to arrest such a situation is to be very sober and independent while choosing marriage partners. Invest in early preparations prior to the vows and certain situations should not be allowed to dictate the marriage, situations like unwanted pregnancies and money.

All the men we talked to stated ‘being denied conjugal rights’ and an overbearing wife (read nagging) as good reasons to make them unhappy in marriage, and although some women just do not want to have sex, childbirth is known to take away female libido.

So why do women lose sexual desire after birth? Experts are still debating on this, but change in hormones has been hugely blamed.

It is widely believed that sex is 80 per cent in the mind; when a woman gives birth, there are a lot of things that take priority over sex; she is mentally and physically exhausted from looking after a newborn, she sleeps less, and she is probably worried about her weight or change in body shape.

Some experts have also cited it as nature’s own way of spacing children – it lowers the woman’s libido so that she does not conceive while she is breastfeeding, sort of to give her time to nurture the child she has just had. The good news is, this is not a permanent condition – in most cases, libido is back within a year.


Posted in Features | Comments Off on Unhappily married ever after

Kenyan who threatened to kill girlfriend gets prison sentence

Posted by Administrator on December 18, 2010

A Kenyan nuclear engineer who stormed into a girlfriend’s apartment brandishing a gun and threatening to kill her if he found another man there was sentenced in Pittsburgh federal court Friday to three years and one month in prison on four gun charges.

Leo Nyangoko Chacha, 37, entered the country legally in 1988 on a student visa but stayed after his visa expired in 2001. At the time of his arrest, he was a fugitive from a 2000 Arizona drug case.

When Chacha was arrested, he was in possession of a stolen 9 mm pistol. He pleaded guilty in June to four charges connected to the pistol: possession of a firearm by a fugitive, possession of a firearm by a drug user, possession of a firearm by an illegal alien and possession of a firearm by a foreign national who entered the country on a non-immigrant visa.

U.S. District Judge Gary Lancaster also sentenced Chacha to three years of probation but noted that he would be deported as soon as he finished his prison sentence.

Chacha said he was sorry for the grief he caused family and friends.

“It was stupid. I was silly to have that gun in my possession,” he said.

The former girlfriend told the judge that she has had trouble sleeping since the incident and changes her route if she sees a vehicle like the one Chacha drove. The Tribune-Review doesn’t identify victims of domestic violence.

Chacha earned a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering from Penn State and was working for NuVision Engineering Inc. when he was arrested in 2009.

Source: http://www.pittsburghlive.com/x/pittsburghtrib/news/pittsburgh/s_714250.html

Posted in Diaspora News, Kenya | Tagged: | 3 Comments »

Surgery gives epilepsy patient a ‘new life’

Posted by Administrator on December 18, 2010

An Ahmedabad-based surgeon has given a Kenyan nurse suffering from epilepsy ‘a new life’ through a procedure that is first-of-its-kind in the city.

Thirty-four-year-old Mogusi Pertonilla Kemunto, who hails from Nairobi in Kenya, was admitted to a hospital when she developed back pain in 2002 while shifting a patient.

Kemunto later on developed seizures. She was given Valproate when her condition deteriorated. While she was put on anti-epilepsy drugs, MRI and CT scan suggested temporal lobe cyst.

Her employers asked her to quit but she did not lose hope and approached Apollo Hospital in Ahmedabad.

In July this year, Dr Somesh Desai operated upon Kemunto. According to Desai, if a patient suffers from temporal lobectomy then surgery gives good results. It takes about six months to ascertain the impact of the surgery.

Today, Kemunto is not only satisfied with the surgery but thinks that it has given her a new life.

“I am a nurse at a hospital in Nairobi. When my problem was detected my employers asked me to resign. But instead of losing hope I came to Ahmedabad. After the surgery by Dr Desai my life has changed. I have not had a single fit since July and feel that I am living a new life,” said Kemunto who was in the city for a follow-up.

Source: http://www.ahmedabadmirror.com/article/3/2010121820101218032115109f44bd5e3/Surgery-gives-epilepsy-patient-a-%E2%80%98new-life%E2%80%99.html

Posted in Diaspora News | 1 Comment »

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