Wednesday, 9th November – Good morning! This is your daily edition of our brief, but salient Kenyan news properly selected for you.
Business Unusual in The Police Service
On Monday this week, goons raided a home in Westlands and demolished a house owned by a Kenyan of Indian descent after a private developer laid claim to the ownership of the property. This was done in the full glare of the cameras and the police watching from a distance despite a court order stopping the eviction.
This shone a spotlight on the degree of impunity that has existed for many years, but escalated in recent weeks after President William Ruto took over power on September 13.
Sources within the police circles have intimated that the officers are on a go-slow for fears of being victimized, especially after the so-called clean-up at the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI).
City dwellers have also complained that lately cases of mugging have spiked and law enforcers are doing little to avert crimes.
UDA Distances Itself From Proposal to Scrap Term Limit
President William Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) has disowned a proposal by one of its MPs to amend the constitution to remove the presidential term limit, terming it a product of fertile imagination.
However, the proposer, Fafi MP Salah Yakub, maintained that he and other UDA MPs were working on a draft amendment and soon their recommendations will be out. But he insisted that the proposal to remove term limits for Presidents but bar anyone who has attained age 75 from running for the top seat, was his personal position.
Azimio la Umoja lawmakers vowed to be vigilant to ensure the proposal does not sail through in Parliament.
Machogu Backtracks on Varsities’ Funding
Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu yesterday succumbed to pressure after days of enduring heavy backlash following his remarks last week that the government would withdraw funding of public universities.
The minister claimed that his words were taken out of context as he only encouraged varsities to embrace research, innovation, and technology to raise more money to sustain themselves.
He charged that the government will continue to support the institutions, financially.
Opposition Says New Govt is Confused
Azimio la Umoja leaders have said they are shocked by the policies of the new government of President William Ruto as all along the Kenya Kwanza anchored their promises on whipping emotions.
Opposition MPs led by National Assembly Minority Leader Opiyo Wandayi noted that the Hustler administration has started showing that incompetence, citing what they called reckless remarks by top government officials.
They gave the example of Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu who recently declared that government will stop funding public universities. The lawmakers said the public was not sure whether Machogu issued a personal opinion or a government position.
Also, they took a swipe at Transport Cabinet Secretary Kipchumba Murkomen for sharing some documents that he claimed were the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) contract only to turn out he lied.
Students in Custody Over Murder of Businessman
Three students who hacked a businessman to death in Eldama Ravine, Baringo County have been arrested. One is still at large.
Police said the Form Two boys from different schools in the area attacked Peter Kibet as he was opening his gate and killed him before dumping his body in a dam.
The police suspects are helping the detectives in the investigation, pending their arraignment.
Parastatals Boses in Trouble Over Ksh18 Billion Scam
For the second day yesterday, Kakamega Governor Fernandes Barasa spend hours at the Integrity Centre where he was being grilled over his role in the Ksh18 billion Lake Turkana Wind Power scandal. The alleged scam happened when Barasa was the Chief Executive Officer of the Kenya Electricity Transmission Company (Ketraco).
Others on Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission’s (EACC) radar are current and former managers at Ketraco, Kenya Power and Energy, and Petroleum and Regulatory Authority (EPRA).
The agencies were involved in the tendering and the poor execution of the multi-billion shillings transmission line.
Bob Collymore Succession Dispute Settled
Wambui Collymore, the widow of the late Safaricom Chief Executive Officer Bob Collymore, and his two children from a previous marriage have reached an agreement over his Ksh200 million estate.
Both parties have withdrawn the case they had filed after agreeing to settle the dispute out of court.
The children wanted Wambui stripped of the power to be the administrator of Bob’s assets which include, cash, cars, real estate, and shares in different companies.
Committee to Accept Applications From Independent Candidates For EALA Jobs
Individuals wishing to join the East African Legislative Assembly (EALA) as independent members have by asked by the joint committee of the National Assembly and the Senate that will be vetting the nominees to apply.
The co-chair of the committee, Makueni Senator Dan Maanzo will be considered whether they have been fronted by political parties or partyless.
The big coalitions, Kenya Kwanza Alliance and the Azimio la Umoja will produce a combined 27 nominees for vetting.
After the exercise, only nine will be successful to join EALA.
Kemsa to Embrace Technology to Fight Corruption
Health Cabinet Secretary Susan Wafula has promised to stamp out corruption at the Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (Kemsa) through technology.
She said companies wishing to work with the agency must be accountable and transparent, noting the digitizing Kemsa will ensure officials do not influence tenders as it happened in 2020 when well-connected individuals won bids to supply material irregularly. The scandal created “Covid-19 billionaires”.
PSC Positions Filled
Lawmakers have finally endorsed the Parliamentary Service Commission (PSC) list after weeks of scrambling for the positions by members from Azimio la Umoja and the Kenya Kwanza Alliance.
The Kenya Kwanza has Nyali MP Mohamed Ali, Nyandarua Woman Rep Faith Gitau, Laikipia Senator John Kinyua, and Nominated MP Joyce Korir as members of the powerful commission.
Azimio commissioners are Likoni MP Mishi Mboko, her Movoko counterpart Patrick Makau and Isiolo Senator Fatuma Dullo.