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Archive for May, 2011

Devani’s looming return puts powerful friends on high alert

Posted by Administrator on May 31, 2011

Mr Devani, who was arrested last week and is awaiting commencement of extradition proceedings in a UK court, is alleged to have masterminded Kenya’s biggest oil sector scam ever. FILE

Mr Devani, who was arrested last week and is awaiting commencement of extradition proceedings in a UK court, is alleged to have masterminded Kenya’s biggest oil sector scam ever. FILE

Politicians and senior civil servants topped the list of individuals and institutions that are following with interest the possible return of Yagnesh Devani — the runaway businessman at the centre of the multi-billion Shilling Triton oil scandal.

Mr Devani, who was arrested last week and is awaiting commencement of extradition proceedings in a UK court, is alleged to have masterminded Kenya’s biggest oil sector scam ever, estimated to have cost financiers and oil marketers Sh7.6 billion in 2008.

His flight out of the country as Kenya sunk into a petroleum crisis in December 2008 left a cloud of dust in its wake that has seen more than a half a dozen senior banking and petroleum industry officials lose their jobs beside a chain of lawsuits that those who lost money in the scam have filed against him and the Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC).

Legal experts said that apart from facilitating the full hearing of the suits pending in court, Mr Devani’s return could become a study in how influence works in the grey area between the State and private business — often with disastrous results.

“There must be a good measure of discomfort among the political and civil service elite without who Mr Devani could never have pulled off the big oil deals,” said Gad Awuonda, a Nairobi lawyer.

At the peak of his fame as one of Kenya’s most politically connected businessmen, Mr Devani wined and dined with Cabinet minister, permanent secretaries and heads of State corporations – who may be dragged into whatever battles he chooses to fight upon arriving in Nairobi.

It is through these high level connections that his firm, Triton, with less than three per cent share of Kenya’s petroleum market, managed to keep large amounts of oil for speculative purposes at the government-owned Kipevu storage facilities.

Petroleum industry regulations require oil marketers to store oil in the tanks based on their marketshare.

Though Kenyan and UK officials yesterday said no dates had been set for the hearing of the extradition proceedings for Mr Devani, petroleum industry insiders talked of rising levels of discomfort in the industry over the possibility of Mr Devani’s return.

Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC), the oil distributor that is facing nearly Sh8 billion in potential liabilities arising from the operations his Triton firm, senior officials at the parastatal and at KCB who lost their jobs in the wake of the Triton scam are among those said to be watching the Devani extradition saga with interest.

Mr Devani is facing criminal charges of stealing Sh1 billion worth of petroleum from the KCB Group and his Triton firm is at the centre of a number of suits filed against alleged irregular evacuation of oil from KPC custody worth about Sh8 billion.

The arrest of Mr Devani in exchange for a possible extradition of former Finance minister Chris Okemo and former Kenya Power and Lighting Company CEO Samuel Gichuru over money laundering in Jersey island has sent shockwaves in high political places.

Defraud oil marketers

The list of former KPC employees who may have an interest in Mr Devani’s return includes former operations manager Peter Mecha, technician Benedict Mutua and Phanuel Silvano who were fired and charged with conspiring to defraud oil marketers by pretending that Triton had oil to sell.

KPC itself has had to fight off an arbitration ruling in favour of Kobil for allowing Triton to illegally hog the ullage (storage space) at Kipevu Oil Storage Facility (KOSF), a charge that the oil marketers consistently made since 2004 and vehemently denied by KPC.

Kobil obtained damages amounting to Sh4.5 billion after it was determined that Triton’s irregular operations had cost it business opportunities and increased its costs.
The oil marketer is however expected to strike a deal that will enable it to use the KOSF facility for free for a specified period of time in return for its huge claims against KPC.

Mr Celestine Kilinda, the KPC managing director Monday said the firm had appealed against the arbitration but was emphatic that whatever outcome the settlement will not involve cash payment.

“I don’t think his extradition is going to affect us much unless there’s payment for the damages,” he said while declining to comment on the on-going case with a British firm.

The Triton saga left in its wake a wave of litigations that may benefit from Mr Devani’s extradition even as the State countered claims that it was preparing to let the businessman off the hook in exchange for the sale of his assets.

Mr Keriako Tobiko, the Director of Public Prosecutions, dismissed as baseless reports that Mr Devani — like Goldenberg architect Kamlesh Pattni — plans to enter into an agreement with the government to sell his assets in exchange for freedom from the Triton scam charges.

Last Friday, reports indicated that a deed of settlement had been prepared by KCB and PTA Bank on March 9, 2009 to drop the only criminal case against Mr Devani in return for his assets.

“We have not received such request,” Mr Tobiko said when asked about the possibility of entering such a deal.

UK-based Glencore Energy Ltd, one of Triton’s financiers, is in court seeking Sh3 billion from KPC for unlawful release of 31,752 metric tonnes of petroleum without its consent as provided for under the Collateral Financing Agreement (CFA).

Glencore wants the court to order KPC to refund it $40 million, an equivalent of 31,752 tonnes of products that was illegally released to Triton. KPC has denied the claims.

In the KCB case, Mr Devani was charged in absentia on January 14, 2009 for stealing more than $12 million belonging to the bank between July 31 and August 1, 2008 at the bank’s Moi Avenue branch. The businessman is alleged to have committed the crime together with Triton and KCB officials William Mundia, Collins Otieno, Mahendra Pathak, Julius Kilonzo, Job Kangogo, Samson Waka, Patrick Ngare, Peter Muthungu.

Mr Devani faces another count of stealing by servant more than $19 million he allegedly received on behalf of Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC).

Criminal fraud

The government has described as “criminal fraud” the KPC and Triton oil saga that saw the oil marketer collapse with at least Sh7.6 billion belonging to financiers.

Oil marketers are said to have lost billions worth of oil consignments that never reached them.

Despite being on the run reportedly in India and the UK — and even featuring on the Interpol website as a fugitive — Mr Devani moved to the High Court last year seeking orders to quash his arrest. A judge has ordered his lawyer, Mr Kioko Kilukumi, to serve the suit papers to the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission and KCB.

The businessman had sought the help of the constitutional court in setting aside the arrest summons issued by chief magistrate Gilbert Mutembei.



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Zimbabwe’s Mr Ugly 2011

Posted by Administrator on May 31, 2011

Tough on the eye: Deserving winner ... Mr Ugly 2011 Austin Mbewe

Tough on the eye: Deserving winner ... Mr Ugly 2011 Austin Mbewe

A Zimbabwe man took the coveted title of Mr. Ugly at a weekend pageant judged by a panel of women.

Austin Mbewe, 30, from the city of Bulawayo was crowned Mr. Ugly in what local news reports called a “tightly contested” race. He won $173 and a blanket.

“I feel greatly honored by this victory,” he told the Herald, a state-run newspaper. “I have been a subject of ridicule from society since childhood and the world has seen that there is a beautiful side to my ugliness.”

“I am very confident with my natural looks and confident about it. It was a tight contest but at the end of the day my hard work was rewarded,” Mbewe said.

The gala at the Pagomo Heights Leisure Centre in Beitbridge, on the border with South Africa, reportedly drew hundreds of spectators and a long line of cars was seen leading to the event.

A total of 15 ugly men had been expected to hit the runway, but six of them developed “cold feet” at the last minute, the Herald reports.

The Mr. Ugly pageant, which was being held for a third year, is supported by the Zimbabwe Tourism Authority and National Arts Council. All the judges were women, and the contestants were scored on their style in four categories: casual, smart casual, safari and sports.

“Basically the competition is meant for people to have fun and celebrate who they are just like any other contests in the world,” event organizer Lovemore Chonzi said.

Mbewe was a clear-cut winner, the paper reports, noting that “he moved the crowd from the onset when he took to the ramp” and “everyone agreed he was the right man for the Mr. Ugly throne.”

The pageant also named two Mr. Ugly Personalities — Touchmore Denyathi and Thomas Magwegwe, both from the town of Beitbridge.

Last year’s champion was 43-year-old Elmas Chiganda, who after winning declared that “I might be ugly but I have a good heart.”

Another previous Mr. Ugly winner, Peter Chikomakoma, won $215, a big axe and a goat for his efforts.

Source: http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/offbeat/110530/zimbabwe-mr-ugly-pageant-worlds-ugliest-man

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Death Announcement-David Kamau Waitiki

Posted by Administrator on May 31, 2011

David Kamau Waitiki (Kamash)

David Kamau Waitiki (Kamash)

The body of a Kenyan man found dead a fortnight ago is still lying at a Santa Rosa mortuary in California as the family has not been able to raise the $11,000 needed for his funeral expenses.

21 year old David Kamau Waitiki (Kamash) was found dead at his apartment on May 17th, 12 hours after he apparently died.

David who had moved from San Jose a few months ago shared a two bedroom apartment with a roommate. The roommate reportedly left for work that fateful morning not aware of Kamau’s fate.

Kamau’s girlfriend is said to have gone to the apartment to look for him and her knocks at the front door were not answered. She then went around to the bedroom window which was open and she was able to gian access. It is at this point that she found Kamau dead. She immediately called the police.

Preliminiary coroners report indicate that he died after having a seizure.

Reports indicate that David came to the U.S in 2004 to seek medical assistance for seizures he had been suffering for a while. He had sought treatment in Kenya to no avail.

He sought treatment at San  Mateo Hospital in California and he was responding well to the treatment.

He was the son of Mary Wanjiru & Mr.Joseph Waitiki Ndegwa of Keremara Farm (Kiganjo Road) Nyeri.

He attended Nyeri Kindergarten next to Outspan hotel before proceeding to  Mount Kenya Academy in Nyeri. He had his high school education at Kenyatta high school in Othaya, Nyeri  before attending college at Mombasa Polytechnic.

The family is seeking assistance from friends, family and well wisher’s to enable them meet the financial goal to enable them meet Kamau’s funeral expenses.

Funds can be paid to:

• Bank ofAmerica

Joseph I. Waitiki

Account #: 0448175346

Routing #: 121000358

Checks can be mailed to:

•Joseph Waitiki

1969 Tate   Street C208

East Palo   Alto,CA94303

For more details,contact:

Veronica Ndegwa- 650 906 1370

Posted in Diaspora News | 6 Comments »

Kenya donates Sh82m to Japan

Posted by Administrator on May 30, 2011

NAIROBI, Kenya, May 30 – Kenya has donated one million US dollars,  the equivalent of Sh82 million, to assist victims of the devastating earthquake  and Tsunami that hit Japan in March this year.

Presenting the  donation at Harambee House, President Kibaki assured the Government of Japan of  Kenya’s full support in addressing the devastation caused by the earthquake.

“As you continue to heal from this tragedy of almost unimaginable severity,  we pray to the almighty God to grant comfort and courage to the bereaved  families and the entire nation in overcoming the great pain and loss,” President  Kibaki said.

The President further expressed confidence that through  collective efforts and resilience of the Japanese people will enable them to  recover from the challenging circumstances.

At the bilateral level,  President Kibaki said Japan has been a very good friend of Kenya for a long time  and a leading development partner.

In this regard, the Head of State  noted that Japan has assisted in many projects that have played a crucial role  in Kenya’s development.

Said President Kibaki: “On behalf of my  Government, I wish to sincerely thank the Government of Japan for the quality  financial and technical support it has continued to extend in support of our  economic agenda.”

In keeping with the close partnership between the two  countries, President Kibaki appreciated the fact that Kenya is the largest  recipient of Japanese Overseas Development Assistance (ODA) in Africa.

The President also observed that Nairobi hosts one of the largest Japanese  communities on the continent and is the Regional Headquarters for all of Japan’s  major Agencies as well as its largest trading houses.

President Kibaki  once again expressed his personal and Kenyans’ sincere condolences and  sympathies to the Government, families of the victims and the entire Japanese  people following the devastating earthquake and Tsunami that hit their  country.

Receiving the donation on behalf of the Japanese Government,  Japanese Ambassador to Kenya Toshihisa Takata thanked the Government and the  people of Kenya for their expression of solidarity during this time when Japan  is passing through difficult circumstances.

Ambassador Takata said the  donation will go a long way in assisting those affected by the earthquake and  tsunami in his country.

Speaking during the occasion, the Minister for  Internal Security and Acting Minister for Foreign Affairs Prof. George Saitoti  said Japan occupies a special place in Kenya’s diplomatic relations.

In  this regard, Prof Saitoti assured that Kenya will continue working together with  the Government of Japan in addressing the challenges resulting from the  devastating earthquake and tsunami.

Present during the occasion were  Special Programmes Minister Esther Murugi, Foreign Affairs Assistant Minister  Richard Onyonka, Head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet Amb.  Francis Muthaura and Acting Foreign Affairs Permanent Secretary Amb. Patrick  Wamoto among others.

Source:  http://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/Kenyanews/Kenya-donates-Sh82m-to-Japan-12999.html#ixzz1NtiwdGux

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Body of Kenyan student who drowned in Hope lake-Canada recovered by divers

Posted by Administrator on May 30, 2011

A parked RCMP cruiser sits near Kawkawa Lake on Sunday May 29, 2011. (CTV)

A parked RCMP cruiser sits near Kawkawa Lake on Sunday May 29, 2011. (CTV)

The body of a 24-year-old Kenyan exchange student was recovered from Kawkawa  Lake near Hope on Monday morning.

The student had been at the lake Sunday afternoon with a group of friends  when he went underwater and did not resurface. After a two-day search effort,  the RCMP underwater recovery team found the young man’s body 24 feet (7.3  metres) down in the lake.

Police said foul play was not suspected and alcohol was not believed to be a  factor.

“They were just out having fun,” said Upper Fraser Valley RCMP Corporal Tammy  Hollingsworth, “but sometimes accidents happen when you’re having fun.”

About 16 foreign exchange students at a local university had rented a Bible  camp facility near the lake.

“There’s a floating dock about 70 feet into the lake from the beach area,”  RCMP Const. Tracy Wolbeck said on Sunday. “There were about four or five of them  on the floating dock at the time and the Kenyan male entered the water and  failed to surface.”

An autopsy will be held at Royal Columbian Hospital to determine the cause of  death.

Hollingsworth warned people to be careful on the water, particularly those  who are weak or can’t swim.

“Be aware of your surroundings. Common sense also plays a factor. You don’t  want to be in the water without a PFD [personal flotation device].”

The student’s name is being withheld until his family is notified.

Read more: http://www.chilliwacktimes.com/business/Body+student+drowned+Hope+lake+recovered+divers/4863763/story.html#ixzz1Ntg54W8C

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All for the love of Kamau… and the sweet fruits of his sweat

Posted by Administrator on May 30, 2011

Blame Wambui Otieno and the Umira Kager clan for making this trendy.

You can even throw in Justice (rtd) Richard Otieno Kwach and lawyer John Khaminwa to advance your argument.

Maybe it used to happen, but it only became a case study after the legendary case of 1985 when the Umira Kager clan and Wambui Otieno went to court over the remains of lawyer SM Otieno.

The clan wanted him buried at home in Nyalgunga, while the wife wanted him buried in their home in Matasia.

The tussle over home and house went on for months until home triumphed and the body was sent to Nyalgunga.

Wambui boycotted the burial.

Before then, Kenyans used to respect (and even fear) the dead, but nowadays whenever someone (prominent) passes on, the first thing people ask is when the family will start wrangling over the body.

In the SM Otieno saga — which made matatu drivers rename the City Mortuary bus stop ‘Kwa SM’ — hitherto unknown fathers, children and wives never came out of the woodwork.

But that saga taught Kenyans something very important: to rush to court whenever there was a (burial) dispute.

Nowadays it is the norm, so much so that even when there is no dispute, families will create one.

“Since people did not know him when he was alive, what about people knowing that he has died?” families seem to ask before rushing to court.

There have been situations where bodies have been kept for months awaiting a court ruling as family members get injunctions and counter-injunctions and counter-counter-injunctions barring the another from burying the deceased until the dispute is resolved.

So when and where will Samuel Kamau Wanjiru be buried?

No one seems to know for the case gets more complicated by the hour, what with the numerous fathers and wives laying claim to the World Champion who will now be remembered more for what happened after his death than what he accomplished when he was alive.

(SM Otieno was one of the best criminal lawyers Kenya ever had, but who remembers any case he won? Who even knows that he was known as Silvanus?).

At the rate which Wanjiru’s so many “fathers” and “wives” are coming out, we should not be surprised when another woman comes out and claims she is the real mother.

Source: http://www.nation.co.ke/Features/DN2/All+for+the+love+of+Kamau/-/957860/1171922/-/128e6apz/-/index.html

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It’s back to the courts in Wanjiru family dispute

Posted by Administrator on May 28, 2011

Terezah Njeri Kamau (centre) at Lee Funeral Home Nairobi on May 27,2011 during the post-mortem of her husband Olympic champion Samuel Wanjiru . PHOTO / William Oeri

Terezah Njeri Kamau (centre) at Lee Funeral Home Nairobi on May 27,2011 during the post-mortem of her husband Olympic champion Samuel Wanjiru . PHOTO / William Oeri

The family and legal disputes surrounding fallen marathon champion Samuel Wanjiru will play out in court from Thursday.

Justice Anyara Emukule, who has openly expressed his dissatisfaction with the family’s decision to battle it out in court, will face the three rivalling sides: Mr Wanjiru’s mother, Ms Hannah Wanjiru; his wife, Ms Terezah Njeri; and his supposed other wife, Ms Judy Wambui.

Legal redress

While Mr Wanjiru’s mother moved to court to stop his wife from making burial arrangements or interfering with her son’s remains, Ms Wambui also sought legal redress. She went to court to stop the two from burying her alleged husband.

When Ms Wambui’s application was filed before Justice Emukule, the judge wondered out loud: “Now which one is this again? Is it about the late Wanjiru? How many more such cases will there be?”

The first person to go to court was Hannah Wanjiru on May 19, seeking an interim order barring Ms Njeri from arranging for her son’s burial or removing his body from Lee Funeral Home in Nairobi.

Through lawyer Wilfred Konosi, Hannah Wanjiru said that she went to the home of her late son and found his burial arrangements going on. She said Ms Njeri was planning to bury her son on May 24 without involving her.

Mr Konosi told the court that his client wanted investigations into his death concluded first. He clarified that the matter before the court was not about the late athlete’s estate but his burial.

Justice Emukule granted her a 14-day injunction but told lawyers to seek other ways to resolve the family issues.

However, a few days later, Ms Wambui’s lawyer, Mr Kahiga Waitindi, filed an application seeking to stop Hannah Wanjiru and Ms Njeri from burying Wanjiru.

Ms Wambui, who is six months pregnant, sought orders to have DNA samples extracted from Mr Wanjiru’s body and an analysis be conducted to confirm the paternity of her unborn child.

Justice Emukule granted her request. Her claim that she was Mr Wanjiru’s wife and mother to his child will be considered on June 2, the same day the case filed by Wanjiru’s mother will be heard.

Source: http://www.nation.co.ke/sports/athletics/Its+back+to+the+courts+in+Wanjiru+family+dispute+/-/1100/1171146/-/vilsefz/-/index.html

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Inside Gichuru’s Sh20bn empire

Posted by Administrator on May 28, 2011

File | NATION Mr Chris Okemo (right) hands a certificate of long service to a Kenya Power employee Justin Kimani when he was Energy minister. Looking on is KPLC boss Samuel Gichuru.

File | NATION Mr Chris Okemo (right) hands a certificate of long service to a Kenya Power employee Justin Kimani when he was Energy minister. Looking on is KPLC boss Samuel Gichuru.

What started as a simple divorce case filed by former Kenya Power & Lighting Company boss Samuel Gichuru ended up fast-tracking his name to the list of wanted money launderers.

The Sunday Nation has established that British intelligence officers used some of the affidavits sworn in court during the divorce hearing to piece together bits of one of the most brazen cases of corruption during President Moi’s 24 years in office.

Last week the United Kingdom issued a warrant of arrest against Mr Gichuru and Nambale MP Chris Okemo over alleged corruption and money laundering.

Mr Gichuru is alleged to have received bribes and laundered money in excess of Sh1 billion through a company called Windward registered in Jersey, UK. (See separate story).

Sources familiar with the proceedings said Mr Gichuru may have won the divorce case, but his former wife, Salome Njeri, now deceased, dealt him a severe blow by lifting the lid on some of his best-kept secrets and questionable financial dealings.

In a certificate of urgency seeking an equal share of the matrimonial property filed in the Family Court in Nairobi on November 14, 2006, Njeri claimed Mr Gichuru controlled a multi-million-dollar estate, and that he was worth more than what was stated publicly.

She claimed that Mr Gichuru was operating foreign accounts, that some of the property had been acquired illegally and that he was planning to disinherit her by disposing her of the property and transferring some of it to his girlfriend.

Petitioned for divorce

“… during my marriage to the respondent, the respondent used to operate various bank accounts both locally and internationally and used to update me on our financial worth and investments,” she said, adding, “since the respondent has petitioned for divorce he has started to alienate, sale or transfer the matrimonial properties to the name of his girlfriend with the sole aim of disentitling me and cheating me of my rightful share of the matrimonial properties.”

Consequently, she asked the court to compel Mr Gichuru to “repatriate and transfer to the jurisdiction of this Honourable Court all the credit balances he holds in banks outside the country and especially the $10 million held with HSBC Bank Jersey Island, Sort Code 40-25-34, Account Number 42767791, P.O. Box 14 St. Helier, Jersey Channel Islands, within seven days of the court’s order”.

However, Mr Gichuru contested the claims, saying they were spurious and malicious.

“…if this was indeed a joint account as alleged nothing would be easier than for the applicant to exhibit bank statements or some other such evidence of the existence of the account or the amount held in the account,” he responded in an affidavit on December 19, 2006.

He also dismissed claims by Njeri in another affidavit sworn on November 22, 2006, that the sum in question and other property had been acquired through illegal means.

“Indeed, in a separate affidavit also sworn on November 22, 2006, the applicant has alleged that the money held in this account as well as other properties owned by me were improperly acquired and I am surprised that she should come to a court of law to lay a claim on what she alleges are ill gotten gains,” he said.

If Mr Gichuru had been taken aback by the former wife’s claims, he must have been chilled to the bone when British police sprung him a warrant of arrest for money laundering over suspicious financial dealings in Jersey Island.

It has also emerged that the money Mr Gichuru is accused of laundering is just a fraction of his vast business empire and fortune.

Friends and former associates interviewed put his worth at a conservative Sh20 billion, though others claimed he has assets in excess of Sh50 billion.

Lawyer Ahmednasir Abdullahi, who represented Ms Njeri in the divorce case in 2006, said she estimated their matrimonial property at between Sh70 billion and Sh100 billion.

In practical terms, Sh100 billion is enough to pay and fund the operations of the military, the police, the Provincial Administration and the Administration Police for a year.

To support her claims, Njeri listed 71 prime properties comprising land and buildings in Nairobi, Mombasa, Nakuru, Kitale, Kiambu, Naivasha, Nyahururu, Kitengela and Mavoko municipality.

They include land in the posh Karen area (five acres) and Mombasa Road, Dolphins Palms in Mombasa, three town houses in Kileleshwa (each worth about Sh30 million) and two flats in Hurlingham.

Other properties are in Kyuna Estate, the middle class Dam Estate in Nairobi and the high-end Spring Valley neighbourhood.

She also named tracts of agricultural land and prime plots in a number of counties, shares in top-notch companies, accounts in six top local banks and rent proceeds from houses in leafy city suburbs.

She further tabulated seven bank accounts locally and abroad and 23 companies in which she claimed Mr Gichuru had shares. These include his former parastatal KPLC, KenGen, Kenya Bus Services Ltd and Kenya Seed Company. Mr Gichuru was also said to own shares in Sasini Tea and Coffee Ltd, Yana Trading, Iberafrica Power and the prestigious Lord Errol – a restaurant in Nairobi’s posh Runda suburb.

One of the overseas accounts listed in the suit papers was in Jersey in the English Channel that held $10 million (over Sh860 million) at the time.

“The properties, shares and bank accounts I disclose herein are a fraction of the properties,” Ms Njeri told the court. “The properties I know and which I list in this case (are) in my humble view less than 10 per cent of what we acquired.”

She asked the court to direct the respondent to produce a full list of the property he owns.

“… pending the hearing and final determination of the suit therein, the court do compel the respondent to disclose and deliver a schedule of the properties, shares in companies and bank accounts registered in his name or his benefit that are unknown to the applicant whether the same is located in the jurisdiction of this court or located in Great Britain, South Africa, United Arab Emirates, Canada and Spain or any other jurisdiction,” she pleaded.

The teacher-turned businesswoman was married to Mr Gichuru for 39 years; they had four children. They were married on December 9, 1967 at the PCEA Dr Arthur Memorial Church in Nakuru, the same year he joined the then Central Rift County Council as an administrative officer.

He joined KPLC in 1974 as an assistant company secretary. He rose through the ranks to become managing director in 1983, lasting at the helm until February 2003.

Njeri claimed that she had contributed substantially to the family property owned either jointly or solely by the respondent.

“During my marriage to the respondent since both of us were gainfully employed we jointly contributed to buy properties either in our joint names, through companies in which we were joint shareholders, in the sole name of the respondent or through companies whose shares are solely held by the respondent …. That even though I am just seeking equal shares of the matrimonial property a careful appraisal of our incomes which was as a result of his salary and my earning initial from my employment and later through the schools I ran will show that I contributed more than the respondent,” she claimed.

Njeri initially worked for the City Council of Nairobi as a teacher for 10 years from 1974 before she left to “concentrate on family business.” In the divorce proceedings, Mr Gichuru testified that their marriage broke down when Njeri moved to Nakuru in 1987.

He said she stopped coming to their city home after three years, and would only show up for social functions like weddings of their children.

Mr Gichuru told the court that she would come as a visitor, arriving in the morning and leaving in the evening. She attended those functions as a mother and not as a wife.

He also stated that during initial periods he would visit her at the Nakuru farm to check on its activities. He specified that since around 1987 they had had no conjugal relations. According to him, her actions affected him mentally and socially.

He testified that he had to shoulder responsibilities of both parents while the children were in school. He further said that as the chief executive of KPLC he was invited to several social and official functions, but was compelled to attend those functions on his own, causing him embarrassment “on continuous basis”.

He further told Justice Kalpana Rawal that Njeri denied him the emotional and social support he required to be successful. The former Mrs Gichuru had charged in her petition that her husband was in an adulterous relationship with Bilha Wanjiku Gachoki.

But Mr Gichuru denied the allegations of cruelty and adultery levelled against him. He testified that Ms Gachoki was his friend and business partner. He told the court that he did not have any adulterous relation with her or with any other woman.

Domestic battles

Njeri was unable to prove her allegations beyond reasonable doubt. The bitter court proceedings finally came to a close in November 2006 when Justice Rawal granted the divorce. By the time Njeri died in April last year the property case had not been determined.

Mr Gichuru has since married Ms Gachoki. Our efforts yesterday to get a comment from him failed.Prior to the domestic battles, Mr Gichuru had been in the limelight in 2003 when then Energy minister Ochilo Ayacko appointed a team to audit KPLC.

The appointment of the team, chaired by former Limuru MP George Nyanja, came as the new Narc government took power on the promise of zero tolerance of corruption

The Nyanja team accused Mr Gichuru of stealing millions of shillings from KPLC for nearly two decades, the charge now repeated by Jersey prosecutors. Mr Gichuru also created an artificial power shortages, said the report.

The committee called for the seizure of Mr Gichuru’s property and his subsequent prosecution, recommendations that were never followed through.

“(We found) mismanagement, total abuse of office, because even ethics and morality require that you don’t do certain things,” Mr Nyanja said at the time.

Mr Gichuru refused to comply with a request to appear before the committee, and Mr Ayacko later sent him on compulsory leave. Mr Gichuru later complained in court that the committee did not afford him a fair hearing.

The court found that the Energy minister did not have powers under the law to appoint an audit team.

“Such an act (the appointment of a probe team) is downright illegal and is therefore null and void,” said justices Onesmus Mutungi and Matthew Emukule.

The judges also agreed with Mr Gichuru that the committee that set out to probe KPLC would have been biased since about half of the members were former employees of the corporation and had worked under him.

The court, however, found that Mr Gichuru had refused to appear before the committee to tell his side of the story through what the judges called “posturing”.

But the judges refused to prohibit future use of the report or the documents that were attached on the basis that it would gag investigation undertaken by a body properly authorised by law.

With the recent allegations emerging from Jersey, another chapter of revelations on Mr Gichuru’s wealth may be opening.

It remains to be seen whether Chief Public Prosecutor Keriako Tobiko will hand Mr Gichuru and Mr Okemo over to British authorities for trial abroad.

Source: http://www.nation.co.ke/News/Inside+Gichurus+Sh20bn+empire+/-/1056/1171160/-/xrj1mfz/-/index.html

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Image is everything

Posted by Administrator on May 28, 2011

Photos/FILE Men decide on sight whether you are wife material, chips funga, a platonic friend, or an authority figure they would like to work for. Consider your dressing style and discover what imagine you portray by the way you dress.

Photos/FILE Men decide on sight whether you are wife material, chips funga, a platonic friend, or an authority figure they would like to work for. Consider your dressing style and discover what imagine you portray by the way you dress.

Clothes are a very powerful form of body language. At a glance, it is possible to be judged or even misjudged on the simple basis of how tight your trouser fit is.

Men are visual creatures, a common statement, but true. They check out women in detail, all the while forming their opinions.

As far as they are concerned, the more flesh you reveal, the more ‘available’ you are. To a man, how you present yourself says a lot more than what you actually speak out.

It only takes a man five seconds to decide what kind of woman you are, and whether you are his kind of woman or not.

Most men have a blueprint of their ideal woman in their minds even before they have met you.

According to psychologists, this is probably established before the teens and is based on an important woman in his childhood – his mother or sister.

It only takes a few seconds for him to decide whether you fit his ideal or not and how you dress  the first time he sees you plays a big role in this decision.

Many women today have diverse lives usually juggling a career and family. Finding a balance imagewise means adopting a professional style with a little bit of casual dressing for weekends and family days thrown in.

Our images are shaped by the media, our own self-consciousness and by the men around us. It pays to establish a look that you are comfortable with, and which expresses the person you really are, according to yourself.

A self-assessment with an image consultant is of great help in this aspect. Many experts are of the view that a woman’s destiny is partly linked to her image and clothing choices.

To help you better understand the impact your image has, the Satmag team dressed up one woman in several different ways, thereby giving her a number of different personalities.

The woman in question is 27-year-old Milka Wambui, of Milimani Classic Salon, in Nairobi. We set her out in town to gauge the reaction of  the men around her, and these were the responses, according to what she was wearing:

Office suit:

This style makes her look like a career-minded woman who is very self-assured. She looks like she would make a good boss, considering the fact that she has not expressed her sexuality through her clothes.

She seems interested in looking professional and intelligent, and at first glance, most men would be slightly scared of approaching her for a date.

Her clothes make her look like the type who is serious about her career, and would probably have little or no time for a love life.

She seems as though she heads straight for evening classes in a bid to improve on her education.

Most men thought she was the type who would only consider settling down after becoming well-established in her career at a level above manager.

She also looks like a go-getter at work – the ones who know what they want and go for it relentlessly.

Image rating ****stars


Hot pants and boots:

This look caused quite a stir, wolf-whistles and all. Most men said that a woman dressed like this would want people to focus on her body and not her mind.

Most did not see her as career-oriented, and thought she looked like the type who work to get money so that they can party all weekend.

They thought she must be confident to carry off  those hot pants and boots, a look they thought is very daring unless one is on the beach, of course without the boots!

They made passes at her, with many heads turning to get a second glance. The men concurred that they would only approach a woman dressed like that if it was in the evening at a club and all they wanted was some fun.

Most concurred that this is not the woman they would take home to their mother.

Image rating ****stars for shock value.


Most of the men interviewed thought this is the style that brought out the wife and homemaker image in Milka.

They said she looked respectable and humble. The interesting point to note is that they thought she would be unapproachable to flirt with.

They believe that if you decide to speak to a woman dressed this way, you had better be serious with her.

To them, this woman could be anyone in your life …. Your mum, aunt or sister. This just shows that the typical African man is still conservative and traditional.

Image rating*****stars for respectability.


Spaghetti straps:

This one had the men in awe. One of them was quoted as saying “She is way out of my league. She is such a classy dresser; I do not think she would look twice at an ordinary guy like me.”

From most of the reactions she received, we came to the conclusion that sometimes how a woman dresses can be intimidating to some men.

They find certain dress styles too high maintenance. These women probably why no man notices how well dressed they are.

The truth is that most appear not to notice, but they do, but are too scared to approach.

Image rating ***** stars for excellence.



Jeans are the most commonly worn trousers by Nairobi women along with black trousers.

Most men we spoke to commented that some of the jeans are so tight, that it hardly leaves anything to the imagination.

Some of them are worn low-flung, while others are often in bad taste. The fact is that not all women have the body shape for jeans.

If you are curvy, opt for well-tailored trousers and bias cut skirts. Most men complained that most of the time. It seems as if women throw  on jeans when they cannot be bothered to dress with care.

One man stated, “No self-respecting woman in our neighbouring countries would wear jeans with the kind of abandon they are worn in Kenya.”

He even suggested that if it were possible, men should revolt against women wearing jeans. Most off putting are the obviously dirty recycled jeans favoured by young women.

Overall, the fact that men do not like women in jeans came out quite clearly, with many calling for Kenyan women to learn to wear skirts and dresses.

Image rating ***** for unpopularity.  


It’s all down to culture

When a Kenyan African woman decides to wear shorts to  a public place which is not one of those posh shopping malls, she often causes a stir, especially among the men.

Some will even o as far as calling for her stripping. It is not unusual to find groups of men following her and laughing in derision.

At the end of it all, the woman is usually a nervous wreck, unless she has a thick hide. Yet the scenario is often entirely different when a white woman dresses the same way.

No one bothers with her. It is almost as though she was invisible!  Could it be the cultural differences that cause this disparity in reactions, or is it the victimisation of African women?

One black Kenyan women, upon her return from the US where she had lived for close to 10 years happened to be walking in town with a white friend.

Both were wearing shorts and sleeveless T-shirts.  Everywhere they went, people offered opinions on her dress code.

She was lectured by old and young men alike, while her friend was completely ignored.

What the experts say:

Jane Odewale, director of  Extra Edge Image consultancy stresses that a woman should be extremely particular about the image she presents to the world if she wants to be taken seriously.

In our cultural set up, when a woman reveals any part of her body, it is taken to mean that she is promiscuous.  That is why it is always such a big deal when women wear outfits that expose their midriff.

When a man is assessing a woman’s suitability for marriage, the main thing he will look at is how she will fit into his family’s background.

He also tries to imagine how she will hold up as the mother of his children. When a woman goes to meet her potential in-laws for the first time, she needs to pay special attention to every detail of her appearance.

Some women have lost out by simply having long, brightly polished nails or exposed cleavage. A potential wife should look sober and steady, not frivolous, Jane adds.

An interesting observation that Odewale noted was that men expect women to start dressing differently immediately they get married.

It is very common to find a woman dressed in jeans, leggings, spaghetti tops and the like when she is part of a dating couple.

However, when she says ‘I do’, her husband will immediately insist on a more serious dress code.  Many women claim it is unfair, because men are not expected to change their image in any way.


Posted in Features | 1 Comment »

Father Kizito freed over sex claims

Posted by Administrator on May 27, 2011

Catholic priest Renato Kizito, in the back of a police car at Kilimani Police station on May 26, 2011, where he recorded a statement on a sexual molestation complaint. He was freed on Friday. TOM MARUKO

Catholic priest Renato Kizito, in the back of a police car at Kilimani Police station on May 26, 2011, where he recorded a statement on a sexual molestation complaint. He was freed on Friday. TOM MARUKO

NAIROBI, Kenya, May 27 – Catholic priest Father Renato Kizito was set  free by the police on Friday over lack of evidence to charge him in the latest  sex abuse allegations against the missionary.

Fr Kizito who had  been in police custody since Thursday, was earlier on Friday morning taken to  the Kibera Law Courts but no charges were preferred against him.

He was  driven to the Criminal Investigations Department Headquarters on Kiambu Road,  where he was released by the police at around 12.30pm.

The renowned  priest had been accused by his 26-year-old male secretary of sodomising him on  Tuesday night within Riruta area of Dagoretti, in the outskirts of the capital  Nairobi.

“A 26-year-old man who works as Fr Kizito’s secretary lodged a  complaint that he had been sodomised by this particular priest and we are acting  on it,” Kilimani Divisional police chief Bernard Muli told journalists at the  station where the priest was questioned on Thursday.

Police detained the  priest as they conducted forensic tests to build a case against him.

“The  priest has recorded a statement and we have now taken him to hospital for  forensic tests.  We want to get samples from him so that a DNA examination  can commence,” Mr Muli said, adding: “Samples have already been taken from the  man who alleges he was sodomised and doctors have proved that he was indeed  assaulted. What is remaining is to know whether indeed it is Fr Kizito who  sodomised him.”

Fr Kizito, 49, an Italian priest of the Comboni  Missionaries appeared shocked and did not speak to journalists and when Capital  News asked him why he was at the station, he only replied “I don’t know.”

It was the second time the priest is being implicated in a sexual abuse case  in the last two years.

In 2009, the Catholic priest was accused of  sexually molesting young boys under his care but he denied the reports and  instead termed them as a “case of blackmail, defamation and extortion.”

The priest, who has worked in Kenya for over 20 years, offering charity work,  dismissed a news item that had been aired by independent local television, KTN,  showing a video footage of him with the boys.

After investigations,  detectives at the CID concluded that evidence linking him to the alleged charges  was tampered with and subsequently concluded the investigations.

Soon  after police dropped the investigations on him, Fr Kizito placed paid up  advertisements on local newspapers, where he claimed that those who accused him  at the time had been manipulated to do so.

Source:  http://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/Kenyanews/Father-Kizito-freed-over-sex-claims-12968.html#ixzz1NYc7azdN

Posted in Kenya | 1 Comment »

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