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Archive for January 10th, 2012

Don’t release evidence, Village Market mall told

Posted by Administrator on January 10, 2012

The Judicial Service Commission has asked the management of the Village Market shopping mall not to release any evidence related to the incident involving Deputy Chief Justice Nancy Baraza until their investigations are complete.

The request was made by the JSC’s committee led by the Rev Samuel Kobia, which is conducting a parallel investigation into allegations that Justice Baraza threatened to shoot Ms Rebecca Kerubo, a security guard at the mall, on New Year’s Eve.

It is understood that the request was made at the end of a meeting between the management of the mall and the committee as it started its investigations on Tuesday morning.

The JSC committee spent about four hours at the shopping mall, with the Rev Kobia later telling the press that the team was familiarising itself with the security set-up there and watching the footage.

“That, together with the information we are going to collect this afternoon and tomorrow we are then going to put together a report which we shall present to the full JSC by Friday,” he said.

The crucial evidence in the case is contained in about 10-minute video footage from the mall’s closed circuit television camera (CCTV).

Those who have seen the footage, including the police, however, said the footage was not reliable and could not be used.

Police have since forwarded their file on the matter to the Director of Public Prosecutions, Mr Keriako Tobiko.

One who spoke to the Nation on Tuesday said there was no gun visible in the footage.

There are 18 CCTV cameras at the mall and two at the entrance manned by Ms Kerubo could have recorded whatever happened.

The footage would have come from a dome camera located on the ceiling of the corridor leading to Bella Donna Pharmacy, which has a clear view of the entrance and part of the parking area.

In the video, Judge Baraza is seen walking in past the security desk and into the chemist, with Ms Kerubo following her on noticing that the judge had walked in without going through the mandatory security check.

Westlands MP Fred Gumo asked the police to make the footage available to TV stations for Kenyans to see what really happened.

“If the police have proof they should make it public for people to know,” Mr Gumo said.

Source: http://www.nation.co.ke/News/Dont+release+evidence+mall+told+/-/1056/1303264/-/109xb5g/-/index.html

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Al Shabaab mocks Kenya Defense Forces on Twitter

Posted by Administrator on January 10, 2012

Al-Shabaab taunts Kenya Defence Forces on Twitter: ‘With the slow progress you’re making, one wonders whether KDF is patrolling with a Nyayo Pioneer or the Mzungu’s land Rover!’

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Kenyan Government Agency Links Violence in North to Elections

Posted by Administrator on January 10, 2012

Clashes in northern Kenya that the United Nations says have killed at least 46 people are linked to general elections scheduled to take place in the East African nation later this year, a government agency said.

“The National Cohesion and Integration Commission has been to Isiolo and Moyale and has established that the ongoing violent conflicts are politically motivated in anticipation of the 2012 elections,” the commission said in an e-mailed statement today from Nairobi, the capital. It didn’t provide further details.

Intercommunal fighting between the Borana and Gabra livestock-herding communities around Moyale, about 590 kilometers (367 miles) northeast of Nairobi, has also displaced thousands of people, the UN humanitarian agency said last week. The violence is being fuelled by competition for land for grazing and livestock, it said.

Two months of violence following a disputed presidential election in December 2007 left 1,500 people dead and forced another 300,000 to flee their homes. The ethnic clashes were triggered after the election returned President Mwai Kibaki to office, and which his political rival Raila Odinga said was rigged.

The Kenyan commission called on communities in the affected areas to immediately cease hostilities and begin talks to end the conflict.

“We appeal to the political and local leadership, particularly the members of parliament to refrain from any acts that will exacerbate the already volatile situation,” Chairman Mzalendo Kibunja said in the statement.

To contact the reporter on this story: Eric Ombok in Nairobi at  eombok@bloomberg.net.

Source: http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-01-10/kenyan-government-agency-links-violence-in-north-to-elections.html

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Orengo wants diaspora voting list made public

Posted by Administrator on January 10, 2012

Lands minister James Orengo wants the government to make public the population of eligible kenyan voters living in the diaspora to avert poll rigging. Orengo claimed that focus of rigging has been shifted to the diaspora where stringent election rules are yet to be put up. He called on the government and the Independent Electoral and Boundary Commission to make the figure public before the elections.

Speaking at Wire village in Ugenya over the weekend, Orengo said there is a possibility that members of the G7 alliance are planning to rig the diaspora votes in a bid to trounce Prime Minister Raila Odinga. The Ugenya MP urged IEBC to put in place proper mechanisms for the diaspora votes to ensure proper anti-rigging factors are put in place. “It is true that the G7 will not hold and since they are going it individually to the polls as per the indication, they are hell bent on using the diaspora votes to rig out Prime Minister Raila Odinga,” said Orengo.

Kenyans in the diaspora are for the first time expected to vote after the new constitution gave them the privileges. Under the new system, Kenyans in the diaspora will assemble in various government embassies to vote for their candidate of choice. The diaspora voting has been largely criticised as that favouring those who appointed the ambassadors since the ambassadors will act as the returning officer.

What makes the latest declaration even more alarming is the dreadful possibility of a return to the Moi-era electoral practices being applied to voters in the diaspora. “Yes, it is a dreadful situation when you have ambassadors (like Moi-era DCs) serving as returning officers for diaspora voters. What is particularly disconcerting about this is the fact that the ambassadorsare presidential appointees, many of whom are politicians with vested interests,” said Rodgers Orero, a Kenyan living in the UK.

Source: http://www.the-star.co.ke/local/western–nyanza/57285-orengo-wants-diaspora-voting-list-made-public

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Kenyan Call Girls Exporting Sex ToJuba

Posted by Administrator on January 10, 2012

FLESH TRADE: Kenyan women are flocking Juba for one mission

FLESH TRADE: Kenyan women are flocking Juba for one mission

Juba, the capital of the world’s newest country, South Sudan is earning accolades by the day. Since the historic secession from the North mid last year, Juba has seen a surge in trade and a massive construction of new structures, as it scrambles for recognition in the global map. The city has attracted people from all over the world including humanitarian workers, consulates, traders and those in hospitality industry. The new economic euphoria, coupled by an unprecedented cross border immigration is now flourishing the world’s oldest profession-prostitution.

Commercial sex workers are drawn from neighboring countries including Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Eritrea and the DRC. They are thronging Juba for one mission- to make quick money. Even the previously naive South Sudanese and several Northerners (young girls and women) have been lured into the trade in a bid to earn a living and sexual freedom.

In a bid to revamp a country reeling from a protracted 21 year old civil war, it is a catch 22 scenario for foreign traders who want to export anything that can be sold in Juba-including sex. The upsurge in sex trade, mainly booming along the border areas and in the main city has necessitated the influx of brothels, mainly operating as sex camps. Among the brothels that have made house hold names include, Gumbo, Rock City, Jebel, Customs and Airport road among others, all located within Juba town. Kenyans known to be entrepreneurial by nature are flexing their muscles in the lucrative business. Rock City Lodge is home to about 200 and 400 Kenyan sex workers, according to statistics by a Juba-based NGO, Confident Children out of Conflict, who mainly target travelers and tourists.

Although prostitution is illegal in South Sudan, many girls engage in the trade in hide-outs masquerading as lodges. An official from the South Sudan Aids Commission who begged anonymity admits that containing the vice is an uphill task because it has also lured under-age South Sudanese girls sell their bodies for a living.

“Prior to the stability of South Sudan and the signing of the CPA in 2005, prostitution was largely associated with foreigners. It is regrettable that our very own girls now engage in transactional sex work due to the influence from their foreign peers.” He cites poverty and lack of education as the major contributors to commercial sex. “You see, most of these local girls are homeless and without any family, and since they can’t get descent jobs, they resort to prostitution.”

Foreign girls turning tricks are increasing in number. Statistics from a US-funded organisation, Family Health International puts the number of sex workers to between 4000 and 10000, which is also inclusive of locals.

A section of Kenyan girls living in Juba engage in transactional sex voluntarily while scores of others are lured into the trade by unscrupulous agents operating in Nairobi, who organise for the girls to go and work as domestic workers or as waitresses, only to end up as prostitutes. Once they enter Juba, the latter are now dependent on their ‘hosts’ who mainly operate as pimps. Janet Kanini 25 has just returned from Juba. She was invited there by her aunt (name withheld) in January last year, immediately after the historic referendum to call for a secession of the South from the North.

“I thought that I was going to help my aunt in her restaurant situated at the Jebel market. She had linked me up with an agency in Nairobi’s river road area who helped me with a passport and visa as well as other logistics to enable me travel to Juba.” The young girl, who allows me to use her real names but not photograph her, says upon reaching Juba, she only worked at her aunt’s restaurant for one week. She would later be enrolled in a brothel to work as a prostitute.

“I could service five male clients in a night. They never paid me anything as the money went to the brothel owner who I referred to as ‘mum’. Janet talks of the sexual violence that surrounds the brothels. “The clients do not care if you are there voluntarily or otherwise. Some even insult you while others beat you up.” She says that the issue of protection is a mirage as some clients refuse to wear condoms. “Sometimes when you tell a man to use a condom, he points a gun at you. Then after finishing with you, he will mock you and leave the room, ready to ‘slaughter’ another girl,” she says.

Janet’s case represents scores of girls who are not in a position to negotiate their sex work, or even to benefit from the money they have been earning. Hers is a classic example of involuntary bonded labour. An action research carried out by a Juba-based NGO, Confident Children out of Conflict (CCC) notes that ‘Pimps are the business brokers or -managers of prostitutes. Usually the prostitutes are highly dependent on them for their protection. Financially, they are usually dependent on them too, even to the extent of bondage. They manage the flow of clients to the sex workers and recover a large part of their earnings as rent in return.’

Like any other trade, sex business is booming in Juba. Most Kenyan girls that iI interviewed admit that Sudanese men are the ‘new kids on the block’ as they have lots of cash. “I target tall Dinka men who drive cars with number plates written GOSS (Government of South Sudan),” says Triza* proudly. Triza is a fresh graduate of Nairobi University who had been a commercial sex worker at the famous Koinange ‘Red light’ street in Nairobi.

She decided to export her skills into Juba because, according to her, Nairobi is not lucrative any more. “There are so many of us at Koinange street and with the harsh economic times in Nairobi, people are wary of spending on sex.” In Juba, she can make a whooping 1,335.77 SDG ($500) in a week and this she does by sleeping with different men at different lodges. Triza’s clients include rich Dinka men, expatratiates but on a grey day, she can offer her services to truck drivers who pay her a paltry 20SDG per sex round.

Juba’s sexual landscape is a far cry from Nairobi’s Koinange street. Whereas Nairobi girls are known for positioning themselves at noticeable pick-up points along the road, or operating in palatial homes in leafy suburbs, in Juba, the sex business is mainly in dilapidated sex camps. I visited the Gumbo Business Centre, which also serves as a transit area for many trucks that deliver goods into Juba thus making it strategic for many travelers in need of lodging.

Gumbo is lined up with numerous brothels masquerading as lodges. These are skewed structures mainly constructed with tin and papyrus and the numerous rows and rows of them have given birth to a sprawling slum. Never mind the dilapidated set up of the place, with open sewers full of filth and rotten garbage, for this is where money changes hands for female bodies. In here, the business of sex is under the strict guidance of pimps (brothel owners) thus making it less lucrative for the girls. It is here that you also find under age Southern Sudanese who cannot afford to solicit for sex in Hadikas (night clubs).

“On a good week, I can pocket around (500 SDG) $187 and that is if I solicit sex from one sex camp to another,” says Kate* a Kenyan. Kate earns 20 SDG per sex session and can reduce it to 10, on a rainy day. According to her many Kenyan girls, unlike their foreign counterparts, always agree to use condoms unless when they are under intense pressure from violent clients. “We always get condoms from local NGO’s like International HIV/Aids Alliance and our peer educators implore on us to always use them. Sometimes when you tell a client to wear protection, he threatens you with a knife or refuses to pay you.” She has since gone for five HIV tests which proved negative. But this status could be short-lived.

Kate lives a double life. During the day, she works in a salon and at night, she is a ‘call’ girl. She has so mastered the art that she is able to spot a man with a rich pocket. “You know here in Juba, so many wealthy people are coming for business and after a hard day, they need some quality time,” she says with a smile. Kate decries the deplorable life of the sex camps where exploitation is rife.

She says that lodge owners capitalize on the trade at the expense of the girls, “We do the donkey work but get peanuts. If I rely on the sex camps I will be so poor, so I have to up my game by soliciting for men in night clubs and sometimes at the border.” She however admits that the influx of twilight girls in Juba has reduced their earnings.

“I came here five years ago and that time, we were so few. A single sex act could earn me at least 30pounds ($11). I could operate from Jebel and Konyokonyo markets. (Jebel is the largest market in Juba which is synonymous with sex workers, while the latter has traders of all sorts and also specialisez in sex trade). She says that Kenyans have to compete for clients with Ethiopian and Ugandan girls, who flock the markets and are also very ‘smart’ in the game. Sometimes when business is really low, they are forced to share clients and consequently share the pay.

These sex rooms have nothing to show for it, save for the ‘work’ that goes on here. The beds are made of bamboo sticks, often very weak and lack bedsheets. Ventilation is a mirage and floors are mainly mud or sand. The bathroom area needs a facelift, it reeks of stale urine and the taps are ever dry. The girls have to rely on the brothel owners to provide water for bathing. One has to part with at least $3-5 for daily rent in which case is the amount one makes on the job. Most girls however, opt for monthly rent which could go for $50 or less, if one negotiates with the brothel owners.

“Here is it very hard to get well-to-do clients because of the deplorable condition of the area, but all the same we make it,” says a disgruntled Mary*, also a Kenyan. At 35, the mother of three is not ready to quit yet. All her children were born on ‘the job’ and there is a probability that they might end up like her. She talks of a great moral decadence at the brothels, thus making it not safe for growing children. Her main clients are truck drivers who often book nearby lodges for sleep. She says that some drivers are so stingy with money and opt to exchange sex for food. “A client can sleep with you and instead of giving you money, he will buy you food.” These are mainly Mundukuru( Arabic shop owners).

Though Gumbo is mainly associated with Ugandan sex workers, Kenyan girls are gaining popularity by the day. Most sex camps here are owned by soldiers and police men who often run the place in ‘absentia’ but the sex workers admit that the same policemen solicit sex from them, ‘at a very bad fee’. One Ugandan girl told me that the police pretend to do raids at night in a bid to stop the vice, only to end up sleeping with the girls, “Banange, are you asking me about police raids, hahaha, we are not scared of them anymore.”

Most Kenyan restaurant proprietors organize for sex clients for the call girls. Once the clients dine in their restaurants, they are referred to the brothels where eager girls are waiting for them. The girls will later split the pay with the restaurant owner.

Ironically, even the areas surrounding the renowned Dr. John Garang Mausoleaum and the Juba University roundabouts are prone to sex workers. The International HIV & Aids Alliance, an NGO supporting community action on Aids in developing countries, which has a presence in South Sudan, estimates the HIV prevalence rate to be 6% in Juba. The influx of foreigners who influence young South Sudanese into prostitution could push the figure further.

Now, with the alarming HIV prevalence rate, Local authorities in Juba, under the directive of the South Sudan goverment is set to dismantle all city brothels and deport foreign prostitutes who they blame for decaying the morals of South Sudanese. If this happens, foreign sex workers, including Kenyans may have to find alternative ways of earning a living.

Source: http://www.the-star.co.ke/lifestyle/128-lifestyle/57316-kenyan-call-girls-exporting-sex-tojuba

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Ruto, Allies Form United Republican Party

Posted by Administrator on January 10, 2012

Eldoret North MP William Ruto and his allies have finally formed United Republican Party as their vehicle during the 2012 General Election. Ruto together with 32 MPs met Tuesday and agreed to form the party at Biblica Guest House, Nairobi.

The new party which has already been registered will be unveiled on Sunday. Formal announcement of URP will however be done on Thursday this week.

The move by the MPs follows wrangles in UDM that had seen it divided into two factions. One of the factions was led by the chairman Joseph Chirchir while another was led by Secretary General Martin Ole Kamwaro.

Attempts by Ruto and his allies to resolve differences within UDM last week yielded no fruits with the different factions holding parallel National Executive Council meetings.

Both sides stood their grounds showing no indications of resolving their differences. Tuesday’s meeting brought together MPs from different existing political parties.

Apart from the Eldoret North MP, other leaders who attended the strategy meeting included two Cabinet Ministers Ali Chirau Mwakwere and Naomi Shaban. The other MPs who were present were Charles Keter, Aden Duale and Kambi Kazungu. Sources say the group had identified three parties from which they were to pick their new house.

The leaders had considered United Republican Movement and United Republican Alliance before settling for URP.

Source: http://www.citizennews.co.ke/news/2012/local/item/320-ruto-allies-form-urp-party

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