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Archive for the ‘Kenya Law’ Category

Kenya Citizenship laws under review

Posted by Administrator on January 12, 2011

Immigration Minister Otieno Kajwang

Immigration Minister Otieno Kajwang

NAIROBI, Kenya Jan 11- The Government has formed a 14-member taskforce to review the current laws on immigration and registration of persons and come up with comprehensive citizenship legislation.

Speaking during its inauguration on Tuesday, Immigration Minister Otieno Kajwang’ urged the taskforce to ensure it submits its recommendations within six months.

“Their mandate is to scrutinise the Immigration Act, registration of persons and registration of births so that we can have a law that will take us into the future as is outlined in the Vision 2030. The Constitution has dealt with it.  Now we have to put up the laws that will be used by the practitioners in the day-to-day running,” he said.

The chairman of the taskforce Mumo Matemo said his team would hold public hearings as well as receive memorandum from Kenyans locally and those in the Diaspora in a bid to capture issues Kenyans face during registration processes.

“We are required to identify the challenges and gaps in existing legislation so that we can go to aligning fully the legislation with the current Constitution,” he said.

Before his appointment, Mr Matemo, a lawyer, was the Commissioner of Customs with the Kenya Revenue Authority and has had an illustrious career in the civil service that has spanning 29 years.

Mr Kajwang urged the taskforce which also includes members of the private sector and various government departments, to urgently address the issuance of work permits as well as registration of overseas citizens who would like to get Kenyan identification documents.

“We should never promote statelessness because it is not good for anyone or the world, because a stateless person owes responsibilities to nobody, because you remind him every day that he is not a Kenyan and you have no record of him, that is a dangerous state of affairs,” the Minister said.

He also warned ministry officials against victimising applicants saying that under the new Constitution the ministry could end up facing thousands of litigations.

At the same time, the minister expressed concern over the shortage of the new third-generation Identity cards due to a delay in the re-advertising of the tender.

The Ministry of Immigration has not issued new national identity cards for the last six months because of a tussle between Minister Otieno Kajwang and Head of Public Service Francis Muthaura.

Mr Muthaura has also indefinitely frozen the issuance of work permits and citizenship certificates.

Mr Kajwang’ recently wrote to the President, Prime Minister and Mr Muthaura over the issue but no action has been taken yet.

“It’s two years since the tender was cancelled and still no steps have been made in the direction of re-advertising. We have had many meetings. I have asked for some progress, and the Cabinet has been pushing but nothing seems to be going on. And I stand by what I said previously,” he said

The company has been printing identity cards since 1995 and owns all rights and artworks of the current identity cards.

The ministry issued a tender last year asking for bids for the third-generation identity cards but it was cancelled in April by the Public Procurement Oversight Authority.

The Minister said the new ID cards would have more security details and said that some information which would be included on the new IDs could only be viewed through an electronic device, making it difficult to forge them.

The IDs will also now have colour photographs if the tender for its production will be granted.

Source: http://www.capitalfm.co.ke/news/Kenyanews/Citizenship-laws-under-review.html#ixzz1AjyEPXJN

Posted in Kenya Law | 2 Comments »

Family to bury Queen Jane, court orders

Posted by Administrator on September 13, 2010

A court has ordered that the late Queen Jane be buried by her family at Mugoiri in Murang’a.

Thika senior resident magistrate Barbara Owino ruled that there was no valid marriage between the deceased and James Kariuki who had gone to court seeking orders to bury her at his Makwa village home in Gatundu North.

Immediately after the judgement, close relatives including sisters of the departed songbird broke into sobs outside the crowded courtroom.

However, advocate Ngure Mbugua representing Mr. Kariuki said he would appeal against the decision saying the court left out crucial evidence and that two key witnesses were not called to testify.

“For instance the mother of the deceased Teresia Wangeci was never called to give her evidence yet she was the first defendant in the case and no explanation was given,” said the lawyer.

The magistrate dismissed testimony by Mr Kariuki that he paid the family of the deceased Sh60,000 as dowry.

“There is no evidence to prove this and whatever may have been given cannot be distinguished from any other gifts between friends,” she said.

Regarding a video played in court showing a wedding between the two, Ms Owino said Pastor J.J. Gitahi who officiated at the ceremony was not licensed to formalize the alleged marriage and that his “capacity to do so was called to question.”

She added; “Under the circumstances no marriage took place between the deceased and the plaintiff and he can only be called a friend to her. The body belongs to her family and they have the right to inter her remains.”

The court ordered Mr. Kariuki to pay mortuary charges from July 6 to date and the family to clear the debt owed before then.

Mr Kariuki said he was shocked by the ruling which he termed as unfair to him saying he had lived with Queen Jane for close to 12 years and that “everybody knew she was my wife.”

“If pastor JJ was not licensed to conduct a weeding, then it was not my fault because he told me he was qualified. I believe I was denied justice by the court,” he told reporters after the judgement.

The family of the deceased was represented by Mugo Kamau who termed the ruling as fair saying the plaintiff did not prove any marriage existed under the Kikuyu customary law or the Christian Marriage and Divorce Act Cap 151.

Queen Jane, born Jane Nyambura Ciira, died on June 30 and her body has been lying at the Chiromo mortuary since then.

Source: Daily Nation

Posted in Kenya, Kenya Law | 2 Comments »

US Businessman Sues Kenya for $50 million over gold sale

Posted by Administrator on March 24, 2010

Gold bars: US businessman is suing for loss of profits and punitive damages. File Photo/ Reuters

Gold bars: US businessman is suing for loss of profits and punitive damages. File Photo/Reuters

By ANTONY KARANJA

Posted March 24, 2010 

A  business man in the US has filed a lawsuit in a Minneapolis court seeking to recover over $50 million (Sh3.9 billion) in lost profits and punitive damages from the Republic of Kenya.

The Republic of Kenya, the Kenya Revenue Authority and the Central Bank of Kenya are subject to US Jurisdiction under 28 U.S.C section 1605 (a)(3) which addresses general exception to the jurisdictional immunity of a foreign state.

According to the suit filed last week, Mr Andrew Vilenchik who is a Russian Immigrant, says that he was interested in buying some gold  and so he hired John Saina who is a Minneapolis based consultant from Kenya.

Mr Saina visited Kenya in February 2009 and expressed an interest in purchasing raw gold.

In May 2009, a group who claimed to own a gold mine in the Ituri Province of the Democratic Republic of Congo approached Saina claiming that they had 3,700 kilos of gold that was immediately available for sale, the lawsuits states. They said the total cost of the consignment was $70 million (Sh5.4 billion).

Vilenchik, 31, who manages Community Finance Group  (CFG) authorized Saina to purchase an initial sample of 300 kilos at a cost of $5.7 million.

Saina visited the offices of the group that claimed to have the gold. The meeting took place in the third floor of Hazina Towers in Nairobi.

According to the suit, he verified the existence of the gold in the presence of the gold mine “representatives”. They were also joined by a customs agent accompanied by four armed security guards from G4 services. Saina placed secondary locks on the container that contained the gold to safeguard it.

Samples were also taken to the “Kenya Ministry of Mines for verification.”

Vilenchik says that after the meeting an agreement was reached for an establishment of an escrow account for $350,000 for Kenya customs fees. Vilenchik wired the money into the account.

The plaintiff further states in the suit that the gold was not availed to the CFG as promised but they were informed that additional documentation was required from the Kenya customs and the UN. CFG representatives were later introduced to two gentlemen in another meeting who claimed to be from the UN.

Vilenchik who also joined Saina in Kenya for the transaction, said that one of the Kenyan men told one of his employees, Cary Larsen while on their way to the meeting “that white people disappear in Africa all the time,” and this made them fear for their lives as they tried to sort out the problems.

The suit also states that on June 22, 2009, Vilenchik, Larsen and Saina went to the UN to locate the said “UN agents” they had met with and security guards in the compound confirmed that no individuals bearing the names of the “UN representatives” existed in any of the UN departments.

CFG  reported the matter and filed a complaint with the Kenya Banking Fraud Investigations Department. CFG is said to have filed an attempted murder charge after one of the Kenyan men pointed a gun at Larsen. They reported the incident to the Criminal Investigations Department who according to suit recovered a loaded gun from the Kenyan.

The suit also alleges that the Kenyan men and a Tanzanian counterpart were using fake names.

According to the lawsuit, CFG representatives were taken to the Kenyatta International Airport by the police. The CFG representatives identified the customs seals used by the Kenya customs official on the day the gold was shown to CFG. This enjoins the Customs department to the suit as it is a functionality of the Republic of Kenya.

The suit further states that the Central Bank is enjoined in the suit as it had earlier initiated a hold on the pending wire transfer awaiting verification as to the nature of the wire. The suit alleges that the Central Bank confirmed the legality of the gold sale contract.

In addition, the suit states that the vehicle used to transfer the gold was a 1998  Lexus owned by a Forex Bureau licensed by the Central Bank of Kenya. The forex bureau is listed as an agency or instrumentality of the Republic of Kenya.

In addition to the $50 million, the suit seeks a further $400,000 which includes the $350,000 transferred to the escrow account as well as $50,000 for various travel expenses.

Vilenchik has sent letters complaining about this matter to the U.S Embassy in Kenya, the White House as well as Minnesota’s Senators and House representatives.

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Kenyan jailed for life after raping daughter

Posted by Administrator on December 19, 2009

NYAHURURU, Kenya, Dec 19 – A 31-year-old man will spend the rest of his life behind bars after a Nyahururu court found him guilty of defiling his own daughter, aged two and a half years.

The court heard that on the dawn of May 25, 2008, John Kamau Gatogo sneaked out of his bed as his wife slept and went to the baby’s cot, where he committed the heinous act.

The accused also faced an alternative count of indecently assaulting the minor by touching her private parts. The incident took place at Gikingi village in Laikipia West district.

Reviewing the evidence adduced by five witnesses, Nyahururu resident magistrate Caroline Obara said the baby’s mother was woken up by her daughter’s cries and went to see what was wrong.

She told that court that she found her husband dressing up quickly. He then took his bodaboda and left for work but returned home at about 11 am, where he denied doing anything bad to his daughter.

The mother saw that her little girl was bleeding profusely and rushed her to the Nyahururu District Hospital for treatment, where she was admitted for one and a half weeks.

She also reported the case at the Ngomongo Administration Police camp and the accused was later arrested and then charged with the offence.

As an exhibit, the court prosecutor Paul Omweri produced a small blanket, a dress and panties with blood stains, as evidence in the case. Doctor Charles Muisyo Ngengi of Nyahururu District Hospital also testified and produced a P3 form as evidence.

The court heard that the couple married in January 2006 when the child was four months old.

Delivering the judgment, the magistrate said that the offence committed was serious and the law is very clear on the sentence to be imposed.

And in same court, a herdsman was jailed for six years for committing an unnatural offence by having “sex” with a cow.

Michael Waithaka Ndereba pleaded guilty to the offence of having carnal knowledge of his employer’s cow, when he appeared before Nyahururu Resident Magistrate, Caroline Obara.

The court prosecutor Paul Omweri said that the complainant’s wife Alice Wanjiku went to her cow shed and found the accused mounting the cow.

She raised alarm and the accused attempted to run away, but was arrested by members of the public and taken to the Oljoro Orok police station.

The offence was committed at Busara village in Nyandarua Central district on December 15.

The cow was examined by veterinary Doctor Lawrence Mureithi of Gatimu division, whom in his report he said that the cow was lactating.

Although the accused person had no previous criminal records, the magistrate said the offence carries a maximum sentence of 14 years. The accused was however given 14 days to make an appeal.
 

Source-Capital FM

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Kenya police kill kidnap suspects

Posted by Administrator on October 22, 2009

BY BERNARD MOMANYI

NAIROBI, Kenya, Oct 22 – Three suspected men believed to have kidnapped a businessman in Nairobi’s Dandora estate were shot dead by police on Wednesday night as they allegedly went to collect ransom.

The men in their late twenties or early thirties were accosted on Thika Road as they drove in a saloon car near the General Service Unit (GSU) headquarters at about 9 pm.

Police believe they were headed to Juja or Thika town where they were scheduled to meet a family member of the trader for ransom payment.

“Our officers acted on a tip off, we had information that they were part of the kidnappers who were headed to collect money they had been demanding. They must have realized they were being trailed and that is when they opened fire at the police,” said Leonard Omolo, police chief for Kasarani division.

“The fourth suspect fled and officers are looking for him,” he added.

Another senior officer who was involved in the operation told Capital News they were tipped off that the men were part of well-coordinated ring of kidnappers who have been holding the trader since Tuesday night while demanding a ransom of Sh 3 million.

“The initial plan was to trail them to the spot where they were headed to collect part of a ransom they had been demanding, but they sensed danger and attacked the officers who were trailing them, that is how they ended up being killed,” the officer said.

Mr Omolo said detectives had launched an investigation to establish the whereabouts of the rest of the kidnappers who were still holding the trader on Thursday.

The investigation was being coordinated by the Flying Squad and detectives from the Special Crime Prevention Unit (SCPU).

SCPU’s Richard Katola said an investigation had shown the trader was being held “somewhere in Dandora but the exact location was still unknown.”

It was the first time police shot and killed suspected kidnappers, several months after the new trend of crime was introduced in Kenya.

Police have previously arrested suspected kidnappers in a series of security raids conducted both in Nairobi and upcountry.

Some senior police officers were reported to be furious about the killing of the suspects, and advised that at least one could have been detained to help unravel the intrigues in the kidnapping ordeal and even direct them to their hide-out.

And with the killing of the suspects, police went back to the drawing board on Thursday to begin fresh investigation and the search for the abducted trader.

Source: CAPITAL FM

Posted in Kenya Law | 1 Comment »

Law review experts rule out rights for homosexuals

Posted by Administrator on October 18, 2009

As debate continues over the same-sex marriage of two Kenyan men in London, the team writing a new constitution on Sunday ruled out enshrining the rights of homosexuals. The Committee of Experts on Constitutional Review said it had rejected suggestions by British MPs to recognise and protect the rights of homosexuals in the draft.

“On several occasions some British MPs have approached us on the gay matter. They wanted us to include homosexual and lesbians’ rights in the draft. But we told them that such a thing cannot happen because if we did so, a majority of Kenyans will reject the draft during the forthcoming referendum,” said Mr Otiende Amolo, a member of the committee.

Two Kenyans living in London, Charles Ngengi (groom) and Daniel Chege Gichia, had a wedding on Saturday under the Civil Partnership Act, which recognises a union of people of the same sex. According to that law, a civil partnership is defined as a legal marriage between gay and lesbian couples, though those joined under the law are known as partners, as opposed to the traditional husband and wife.

The wedding of Mr Ngengi and Mr Gichia has outraged religious leaders here at home who described it as “unacceptable and unnatural”. Anglican Archbishop Eliud Wabukala said the union was nothing to celebrate.

“The union is abnormal. As an African and a church leader, I am ashamed. We should advice others not to do the same,” he said. Similar outrage was expressed by PCEA St Andrew’s Church moderator Patrick Mungiriria in his sermon on the family under attack.

Nominated MP and Muslim leader Sheikh Mohammed Dor described it as going against African traditions. He said the Quran, Bible and Hindu scriptures detest such unions. “It should be discouraged by all means. It is un-African and against our traditions. It’s unfortunate it is Kenyans who did it,” he said, and asked the government to take a stand on moral issues. China took a position a long time ago and “such things are not tolerated”, he said.

Sheikh Dor said if nothing is done, more will follow the example of the two men. Mr Amolo said the foreign MPs wanted Kenyan homosexuals and lesbians given the right to marry. The new constitution is supposed to cater for the interests of both the majority and minorities, he said, but same-sex marriages had been rejected by all religious groups.

“In the 5,000 memoranda we received from religious groups, they informed us that they will shoot down the draft if we include the gay rights,” he said. “The majority of Kenyans are opposed to same-sex marriages and anything to do with homosexuals and lesbians. The matter is considered unnatural in the society,” he added.

The lawyer was speaking at Sportman’s Arms Hotel in Nanyuki during a workshop attended by Kenya Correspondents Association members. The committee had organised the workshop for news correspondents to create awareness on the process of constitution-making and also to help in educating the public.

A Reuters correspondent, Noor Ali, had called on the experts to leave out the gay rights issue from the new constitution. “Gay issues are not acceptable in our society and therefore the experts should not waste time on such unnatural acts. How can a Kenyan marry another man when there are many women out there looking for men to marry them?” he posed.

SOURCE: Daily Nation

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