Kenya on high alert over yellow fever
Kenya is on high alert following a yellow fever outbreak in Northern Uganda, which has killed 51 people. Public Health Director Dr. Shanaaz Shariff has however has assured all Kenyans that necessary measures have been taken to protect them from the disease. Speaking to the press in Nairobi Tuesday, Sharif said his ministry has alerted all health workers in the country and especially those in high risk areas to be vigilant and immediately report any patient with unexplained fever and yellowness of body as these are the key symptoms of the disease. He said that the ministry has dispatched health officers to Turkana and Pokot districts which share a common border with Uganda's Kaabong District. "A new challenge has emerged due to the current severe drought being experienced in Northern Kenyya which has led many Kenyans pastoralists in Turkana district crossing the border into Uganda in search of pasture' observed the health official. He noted that Kaabong district has so far reported 18 cases and three deaths adding that protection against yellow fever can be guaranteed through vaccination. The Director added that the ministry is working closely with the Kenya Medical Research Institute - KEMRI and US center for disease prevention and control Kenya chapter to ensure any suspected cases are tested immediately. The disease was reported in December after people began falling ill in nine northern districts. Uganda's health ministry confirmed the disease as yellow fever on Christmas Eve. A total of 206 cases have been detected in 12 districts in Nothern Uganda, where 51 deaths have been confirmed as at 6th January.. The affected districts include Abim , Agago, Kitgum, Kaabong, Kotido, Lamwo, Arua, Lira, Pader, and Gulu, , Nebbi, and Napak. But Shanaza says Kaboong remains a hot spot. The disease, transmitted by infected mosquitoes, was last recorded in Uganda almost 40 years ago, officials say. Yellow fever, unlike malaria, is transmitted by a type of mosquito which is active only during the day.
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Wild Weddings - I Do’s and I Don’ts
In this episode of Wild Weddings a bride can’t stand the word blood and faints. But the wedding continues with everyone sitting down. A man proposes to his girlfriend while they’re skydiving. A bride has a cake made that is a replica of herself. - VIDEO
Asylum seeker who claimed to have been gang-raped and witnessed
family's murder in Somalia exposed as £250k benefit fraudster
An asylum seeker who claimed she had been gang-raped in Somalia was jailed today for swindling more than £250,000 in a 'professionally planned' benefit scam. Amina Muse, 38, also conned Swedish authorities out of £50,000, spending the money on luxury living and holidays in Africa. While she claimed asylum in the UK based on 'appalling atrocities' committed against her in Somalia, investigators found she was living in Sweden at the time. Handing her a four-and-a-half-year prison term at Harrow Crown Court, in north London, Judge Stephen Holt told her: 'One of the most serious aspects of this case is your cynical, dishonest manipulation of the whole system of asylum.' Muse, a mother of six, who also went by the name of Ayan Abdulle, sought refuge in Britain after moving to Sweden in 1995 where she was granted citizenship and enjoyed a 'comfortable' life. On her UK asylum application, disclosed today, she claimed militiamen stormed and looted her family home in war-torn Somalia on December 1, 1998, because she was a member of a minority group. 'They opened fire at us and then broke into our house by force,' she said. 'They shot dead my brothers Asad and Burhan. They died instantly in our presence.' But investigators, who suspect the Muse to be of Kenyan descent, found this to be the date on which she gave birth to a child in Sweden. Between June 2004 and May 2010, Muse, from Neasden, north-west London, claimed a total of £261,358.14 in income support, disability living allowance for one of her children and carer's allowance for herself. This included child benefit, child tax credits and housing benefit from various local authorities. She received a total of £112,985.51 from the borough of Camden where she lived in a four-bedroom property.
Condemning her deceit, Judge Holt said: 'In my view it was fraud from the outset. It was professionally planned.' He added: 'In 1995 you and your family, as it then was, arrived in Sweden in the name of Abdulle and you were given Swedish passports and your children were given Swedish passports. 'You had, as I understand it, two more children in Sweden and one in Denmark and you decided in June 2003 to come to this country and you entered this country under the name of Amina Muse which the jury found, and I'm quite satisfied, was entirely false. Andrew Evans, prosecuting, told the court Muse made her asylum application on the grounds she had a well-founded fear of persecution if she returned to Somalia. Besides the murder of her two brothers, she said her niece had been raped, tortured and beaten and that she, herself, had been gang-raped while three-months pregnant, leading to a miscarriage. But jurors did not believe her claims. Judge Holt told Muse she had exploited the British asylum system which relied on 'goodwill'. This was done to make as 'much money for yourself as possible' in an act which amounted to 'professional fraud', he said. 'Your actions harm the people who really do need and deserve asylum. 'Having gained entry to this country, over the next six years you applied for every single benefit in the name of Amina Muse.' She managed to draw further handouts under the name of Abdulle, he told the court, adding: 'I hear evidence of you flying backwards and forwards between Sweden and London and taking holidays back in Africa. 'In total you took somewhere in the region of £261,358.14 from the British taxpayer and have shown absolutely no remorse.' The international investigation involved HMRC, the Department for Work and Pensions, the UK Border Agency, two local authorities and the authorities in Sweden. This and the subsequent prosecution cost the public purse a further £150,000. Of her four-and-a-half year jail sentence, Muse will serve half in prison and the rest on licence. The judge said this was a more lenient sentence than might have been imposed and took into consideration the welfare of Muse's children, the 'real victims in this case'. The court was told the defendant cannot be deported because she is a British citizen, a matter to be reviewed by the Home Office.
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AN AMAZING NIGERIAN COUPLE WEDDING CAKE IN TEXAS, USA
This is just amazing, Nigerian Bride, Chidi Ogbuta, or Texas had a custom made, life size portrait cake of herself! Rather than fulfilling her life long dream of having a doll made of herself, she instead, decided to have a self portrait wedding cake made of herself. This is just amazing! Take a peek at the picture of Chidi cutting the cake with her husband.
Huge turnout again on 2nd day of south Sudan vote
Thousands of south Sudanese poured out to vote for a second straight day in a landmark independence referendum on Monday, bringing the region a step closer to becoming the world's newest state. Repeating the jubilant scenes witnessed on Sunday, huge queues formed outside polling stations in regional capital Juba from long before dawn as voters seized their chance to have their say on whether to split Africa's largest nation and put the seal on five decades of north-south conflict. The scale of the turnout on the second of the seven days of polling brings the south a big step closer to the 60 percent threshold set by a 2005 peace deal between north and south for the referendum to be valid. "I was born in 1955 as the first war started," said Lometa Hassan after he cast his vote in Juba, referring to a mutiny by southern troops over Britain's decision to give Sudan independence as a single country the following year. "We have had just 10 years of peace in my entire life," he added, referring to the brief lull between civil wars from 1972 to 1983. Like many people, Hassan had come very early to vote on Monday after being deterred by the thousands already waiting long before polls opened at 8:00 am (0500 GMT) on Sunday. "I came here at 5:00 am because yesterday I tried, I came at 7:00 am and I found the whole place filled up," he said. James Khor Chol, 28, took even more drastic action. "I came at 2:00 am. Today I was the first to vote," he said proudly. Like many in this mainly Christian region, Chol had gone to church on Sunday before going to the polling station where he was overwhelmed by the queues.
Many were wearing their Sunday best again on Monday as they cast their vote on whether to break away from the mainly Arab Muslim north. After standing solemnly in sex-segregated lines for hours to perform what for many was a patriotic duty, voters took turns to dip their finger in indelible ink and put their ballot in the box. The women ululated after each one. Southern leaders had urged voters to turn out en masse but the size of the crowds on the first day surprised the referendum organisers. After initially being effusive about the scenes outside polling stations, Chan Reec, the organising commission's number two, later appealed for more consideration to be shown to women with children and the elderly. Polls had been scheduled to close at 5:00 pm (1400 GMT) on Sunday, but many polling stations visited by AFP in Juba stayed open for another two hours or more to deal with the huge backlog of eager voters. Some 3.75 million people are registered to vote in the south and around 117,000 in north Sudan, the majority in the capital Khartoum. Emigres were also able to vote in eight countries abroad. Final results are not expected until next month because of the problems involved in collecting ballot boxes in a vast, war-ravaged region which has just 40 kilometres (25 miles) of tarmac road. The independence referendum is the centrepiece of the 2005 north-south peace deal that ended a devastating 22-year civil war in which some two million people were killed and another four million fled their homes. South Sudanese president Salva Kiir was among the first to cast his ballot in Juba on Sunday. "This is the historic moment the people of south Sudan have been waiting for," Kiir said, holding up his hand to reporters to show the indelible ink that demonstrated he had voted. US envoys Scott Gration and John Kerry as well as Hollywood star George Clooney watched as Kiir cast his ballot. Sudan President Omar al-Bashir, an army man who led the north's war against the south for a decade and a half before signing the peace deal six years ago, has said he will respect the vote's outcome if it is "free and transparent." US President Barack Obama, who aides said had voiced a deep personal commitment to ending the north-south conflict in Sudan, hailed the successful first day of voting and pledged continued support from Washington.
Advert for Beatrice Wangari'e fundraising
The family of Naomi Muthoni and the Organizing Committee of Wangari’s hospital bill cordially invites all our esteemed friends and well wishers to a fundraising event on Saturday 26th Feb 2011, in support of Hospital bill for our sister Beatrice Wangari . She was diagonised with a type of Meningitis and she has been in a semi comma but gradually improving. She was in MP Shah Hospital for over 4 months and the outstanding bill is 4 Million Kenya shillings.
Wangari is the wife of Alex Kuria and a mother of 2 children, sister to Naomi Muthoni (Mama Candy) and a cousin to Naomi Gitu, Janet Nixon (Oxford),Waithira Mwai,Kui Ben(Mama Dexter), Kinjo John (Luton). She is a niece to Mwalimu Mbugua and Paul Mbugua of Missouri USA.
We sincerely ask for your support, little there little here and the burden will be relieved from the shoulders of the beloved husband and family. Those who would like to support us and are unable to come during the fundraising could deposit their gift in this account which is earmarked for that purpose only:-
Acc: No 145144 94
Sort code: 60-05-01
Thanks once again for responding to our need at this hour. We pray that God’s favour will be upon you and that at the hour of need you will have help from all corners.
Motorist gets barking ticket for driving with dog on his lap
A driver convicted of being at the wheel with a sheepdog on his lap has said he should not have been prosecuted. Keith Little claimed the animal was between the front seats of his car and was a Patterdale terrier rather than the sheepdog police had alleged. He also said he had been stopped 16 times in six months. The 62-year-old, from Carlisle, was convicted of failing to properly control his car in the town in May. Carlisle magistrates revoked his licence and fined him £32 with £65 costs. Little told the News & Star: 'They [the police] said it was a black and white collie cross, like a sheepdog; if they think a Patterdale terrier is a sheepdog, I don’t think much of their powers of observation.'
Daytime city drinkers start six months in jail inKenya
Several people found drinking alcohol outside legal hours started serving their jail terms after they failed to raise heavy fines by a Nairobi court. On Thursday, the Makadara Court fined 25 drinkers and beer sellers a total of Sh830,000 or serve a total of 150 months in jail. Bars are required to operate between 5pm and 11pm. Each of the revellers arrested consuming beer at 2pm at Sabina Joy Club on Moi Avenue, Nairobi County, were fined Sh30,000 or serve six months in default. Four who were selling the drinks were fined Sh160,000. Most of the 25 accused persons were aged between 20 and 26. They were arraigned before a resident magistrate Daniel Kinaro who told them: The Mututho rules on alcohol must be implemented. Mr Kinaro imposed the fines when the suspects admitted the offences. They were charged with consuming alcoholic drinks contrary to Section 34 (a) of the Alcoholic Drinks Control Act of 2010 which came into force August 2010. Under this Act a maximum penalty fine of Sh50,000 or nine-month jail term is imposed on defaulters, the magistrate told the convicts. He told them since they were first offenders a fine of Sh30,000 will be imposed on each or six months in default. Under this Act a maximum penalty fine of Sh50,000 or nine-month jail term is imposed on defaulters of Section 34 (a) of the Alcoholic Drinks Control Act of 2010 which came into force August 2010. But this penalty did not go down well for one suspect, Mr Said Karume Pondo ,who protested: A fine or bond of Sh50,000 is too much for me. I was arrested when attending to a call of nature. I cant raise that bail. I will spend my life in detention. He further told Mr Kinaro: Police flushed me out of a toilet. I had gone for short call. He wondered how answering a call of nature can turn out to be so unkind and harsh on him. Another, Ms Caroline Mueni also pleaded: I was not taking beer. Im not a drunkard. Both Pondo and Mueni were released on a cash bail of Sh50,000. They will stand trial February 2, 2011. All the convicts could not raise the fines immediately. They were escorted to Industrial Area and Langata Women prisons to begin their jail terms. - Daily Nation.
A younger Gerishon Kirima with his wives and children and on right the late Gerishon Kirima's palatial home at Kitisuru on December 30, 2010.
DRUG BUSINESS IN KENYA IS MORE THAN YOU THINK
Standard On Saturday Team
Quick spurts of gunfire shatter the night in Ganjoni area of Mombasa town only four hours to the 2005 New Year, sending scared residents into panic. The assassin, a towering young man, pumps three more bullets into the dying man who was walking to his house, then swaggers away into the dark alleys. Police arrive at the murder scene and confirm that the victim is Hassan Abdillahi, the District Criminal Officer at the Port of Mombasa. Fast-forward to August last year and a Flying Squad police officer Ali Aboud, who was based in Mombasa, is assassinated in cold blood while driving on Al Nassar Road in Mombasa. And on a bright afternoon two weeks ago gunshots disrupted a peaceful anti-drugs protest march in the costal town. The protesters scampered in different directions. Several people are left sprawling on the ground with blood oozing out of their bodies. Luckily those who were shot survived. Spine chilling? Yet this is the chilling truth on the extent those behind the highly lucrative but illegal drug syndicates are willing to go to protect their turf. Abdillahi was said to have been investigation the presence of some 50 containers of hard drugs while Aboud had also been on the trail of a network of drug dealers. Our investigations indicate that the kings of Kenya’s drug trafficking will not stop at anything in the multi-billion underworld network that involves tax evasion, crime, prostitution and murder. In scenes reminiscent of violent drug underworld in Mexico and Colombia, Kenya’s drug lords are quickly and menacingly taking over the coast and other major towns.
So serious is the drug problem in Kenya that the US Government has described Kenya as a major conduit for deadly drugs such as cocaine from Asia and South America to Europe. Internal Security Minister George Saitoti recently named five MPs whom he said were under investigation for alleged drug trafficking. The drug trade is booming in Mombasa, Malindi and Lamu. The drug lords are wealthy, well connected and kill at the slightest provocation. They don’t pay tax and have a network of informers, right from the streets to the government’s intelligence units. "It is a syndicate of influential people in Mombasa and Dubai who are intimidating residents and business rivals just to cover up their criminal activities," says an insider whom we can’t name for safety reasons. Investigations revealed that the godfathers of the narcotic trade bring in the drugs in containers with falsified papers. They by-pass port security before they are later moved to special container freight stations. "The containers are opened at the stations, the drugs distributed to peddlers while most of the consignment is exported to Europe," says another source who is well versed with the traffickers’ ways. He adds: "The drugs for export are carefully packed in bulk tea and coffee containers to disguise their smell from sniffer dogs. The remainder is sold in the beaches and Mombasa’s Old Town and other major towns where they have sales networks." Because of the booming drug trade at the coast, the entire coastline from Lunga Lunga to Lamu has now become a breeding ground for youth engaged in hard substance abuse. The drugs mafia at the coast is so brazen, according to our informers, that mysterious murders and unexplained violence against those who either try to nose around or try to cross them. Some of these murders are not fully investigated because they are passed of as normal crime or framed to look like suicides.
"There is another case of a lawyer who stumbled on alteration of minutes at Kenya Ports Authority to ensure one prominent businessman who dabbles in drugs got a multi-million tender." He explained how the lawyer was killed when he was preparing to blow the whistle. Yet another killing was that of an Administration Police officer. He had stumbled upon drugs being removed from containers at a Freight station. The AP took photographs of the scene as evidence. He was later trailed and killed by a regular police officer on the payroll of the drugs cartel. "To cover up their tracks, the drug lords spend millions of shillings in bribes," said an inspector of police who is conversant with the operations of the drug lords. He continues: "These businessmen have a powerful team of ‘leg men and women’. They are found at the police department, the Kenya Revenue Authority, the National Security Intelligence, the Kenya Ports Authority, The Mombasa Municipal Council, the Department of Defence, the Ministry of Lands and the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission." At the Customs department, the traffickers have friends who falsify documents to enable them evade duty. Well-placed sources claim the drug barons have lately forged links with pirates in Somalia and are keen at laying their hands on the huge ransoms demanded whenever a ship is seized. High-ranking police officers are currently investigating the drug trafficking cartel at the Coast as the government struggles to rehabilitate the many youths whose lives have been wrecked by the narcotics. - The Standard.
Barack Obama hails 'clear' trend of lower unemployment
President Obama has cautiously hailed a "clear" trend of job growth, and called on businesses to boost investment. His remarks at a window manufacturer came as the US unemployment rate dropped 0.4 points to 9.4% in December, the largest one-month drop since 1998. Some 103,000 jobs were created last month, the Labor Department said, although this was fewer than forecast. But Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke warned employment could remain depressed for four to five more years. The lower unemployment rate, while cheering, came not only because more people found jobs, but also because 260,000 had given up looking and ceased being counted as unemployed. Touring an energy-efficient window manufacturer in Maryland, Mr Obama said the jobs report showed a clear trend towards economic growth. He predicted a package of tax cuts forged with Republicans last month would continue to boost hiring, and urged businesses who were thinking about creating jobs to press ahead. "If you are planning on making investments in the future, make them now and that will help us grow the economy," he said. "We want businesses to grow, we want this economy to grow and we want to put people back to work."
At the US Senate, meanwhile, Federal Reserve chairman Ben Bernanke warned the job market might not return to normal levels for another four or five years. He said the economy had entered a "self-sustaining recovery" powered by growing consumer spending and robust business investment. But, he added a warning: "Notwithstanding these hopeful signs... [with] employers reportedly still reluctant to add to payrolls, considerable time likely will be required before the unemployment rate has returned to a more normal level."Persistently high unemployment, by damping household income and confidence, could threaten the strength and sustainability of the recovery." According to official Department of Labor figures, seasonally adjusted non-farm payroll employment increased by 103,000, with the number of unemployed people dropping by 556,000 to 14.5 million. Overall employment for October and November was revised to show 70,000 more job gains than earlier reported, and the unemployment rate is now at its lowest since May 2009. Private hiring increased in December by 113,000, while government employment fell by 10,000. Employment rose by 47,000 in the leisure and hospitality sector and by 36,000 in healthcare, but was little changed in other major industries, the Labor Department said. Federal Reserve Governor Elizabeth Duke also sounded a cautiously upbeat note in remarks on Friday. "Overall, the recovery in economic activity to date has been uneven and has not been sufficient to reduce unemployment noticeably," she said. "But I am encouraged by signs that the recovery may have gained traction recently." Labor Secretary Hilda Solis told the BBC she hoped jobless Americans who had stopped looking for work - thereby driving down the unemployment rate - would return to the labour market.
THE LATE KIRIMA'S JOURNEY BACK HOME
The casket bearing the remains of Gerishon Kirima is moved by the council of elders at JKIA on January 3, 2011 and on right Teresia Wairumu (right) the third wife of former Nairobi politician Gerishon Kirima and other family members at JKIA on arrival of the body from south Africa.
Python wedding draws hundreds of well-wishers in Cambodian village
As large-scale weddings go, even Prince William and Kate Middleton may struggle to top this one after python bride Chamrouen married her mate Kroung Pich. Hundreds of guests cheered for the fang-tastic ceremony believed to bring peace and good luck to villagers. The two-hour event in Svay Rolum, south Cambodia, ended with the 4.8m (16ft) ‘bridezilla’ and the smaller male – both believed to be magical – being blessed by two Buddhist monks.
Ringleaders of Derby sex abuse grooming gang jailed
London, Friday 7th January, 2010. The ringleaders of a gang which groomed and abused teenage girls in Derby have been given indeterminate jail terms. Mohammed Liaqat, 28, and Abid Saddique, 27, were found guilty at a trial in November of charges including rape. At Nottingham Crown Court, Saddique was jailed for at least 11 years and Liaqat for a minimum of eight. Many of the gang's victims were given alcohol or drugs before being forced to have sex in cars, rented houses or hotels across the Midlands. Six other men have already been sentenced for their part in the abuse. A seventh man was cleared of sex charges but pleaded guilty to being concerned in the supply of cocaine. Judge Philip Head told Saddique: "Your crimes can only be described as evil," adding he was an "evil, manipulative and controlling" character who was a continuing danger to young girls.
He said the attitude of the pair was "sex at any price" as they and others embarked on a "reign of terror on girls in Derby". Derbyshire Police Det Supt Debbie Pratt praised the victims for coming forward and said that "without their bravery we would not have seen the outcome we saw today". Det Supt Debbie Pratt: "It has traumatised the girls for life" Liaqat, of Briar Lea Close, Sinfin, was found guilty of one count of rape, two of sexual assault, aiding and abetting rape, affray and four counts of sexual activity with a child. Saddique, of Northumberland Street, Normanton, was convicted of four counts of rape as well as two counts of false imprisonment, two of sexual assault, three charges of sexual activity with a child, perverting the course of justice and aiding and abetting rape.There were 26 girls involved in the case, with the youngest 12 and the oldest 18. During the trial, a 16-year-old victim told the court that she received a telephone call from a man she knew and after being taken to a petrol station to buy alcohol, she was driven to an isolated spot where she was raped. Describing the ordeal, she said: "I tried to do everything I could to stop it so at that stage I just said 'yes'. "I just thought if I tell him what he wants to hear, it will be done quicker." Derbyshire Police said the girls were from a variety of backgrounds and urged all parents to be aware of the risks of sexual exploitation. A report published after the gang was convicted said there were "missed opportunities" by agencies to help the girls.
Raila celebrates 66th birthday
The grand coalition government in Kenya has succeeded. Prime Minister Raila Odinga who marked his 66th birthday Friday said whereas the delivery has not been up to the standards set by the ODM party manifesto and spirit, the coalition had made several gains. The PM who cited the Zimbabwe case where a similar accord was reached but failed urged Kenyans to forge unity of purpose. He said Zimbabwe which emulated Kenya and experimented on having a grand coalition, has failed to deliver on its promises to the people of the Southern Africa country. "The grand coalition in Zimbabwe is a failure, but I am glad to say that we in Kenya have succeeded given the circumstances," said the Prime Minister. The PM who threw a party at his residence Friday morning which attended by several MPs and staff said age ought not to be the barometer with which to gauge a person's ability to lead but Kenyans should also look at the leadership qualities when choosing leaders. "It is a fallacy for one to go around flaunting youth as a measure of leadership, because a person can be young with very retrogressive ideas," said Raila. Budalangi MP Ababu Namwamba said he has learned a lot from the Prime Minister and urged the youth to look for role models when they aspire for leadership. He said for the African Union to appoint the Prime Minister the Chief Mediator for the Ivory Coast crisis they had chosen the correct person. Assistant Minister Alfred Khangati echoed Namwamba's sentiments saying that Kenya does not have a shortage of leadership ideals. Cooperative Development Minister Joseph Nyagah praised Raila for his selflessness in fighting for democracy in the country a feat many were not ready to undertake.
Ex-MP jailed for fiddling expenses
Former Labour MP David Chaytor has been jailed for 18 months for making false Parliamentary expenses claims. Chaytor, 61, became the first politician to be convicted and sentenced over the expenses scandal which has rocked Westminster. He submitted bogus invoices to support claims totalling £22,650 for IT services and renting homes in London and his Bury North constituency. But the properties were owned by him and his mother, and he did not pay out any of his own money, Southwark Crown Court in London heard. Chaytor, of Lumbutts, Todmorden, West Yorkshire, pleaded guilty last month to three counts of false accounting between November 2005 and January 2008.
Cruise liner staff warned about cocaine traffickers
Home Office, 07 January 2011
Drug traffickers are stepping up efforts to target cruise liners as a method of smuggling cocaine from the Caribbean and South America to the lucrative markets in Europe, SOCA and the UK Border Agency have warned. Staff in cruise companies and travel agents have now been given a list of tell-tale signs to help them identify passengers who aren't just there for a holiday and protect themselves more effectively against exploitation by criminal gangs. The popularity of cruises with UK holiday makers has risen sharply in recent years and they now account for one in ten package holidays. At the same time, evidence has grown that criminals may be placing drug couriers on board and attempting to corrupt crew to ease their passage. Nearly 2 million passengers are expected to take cruises next year, with around 600,000 embarking from UK ports. Particularly at risk are ships repositioning to Europe from their winter schedules in the Caribbean as well as Central and South America. Couriers are placed on board by organised criminals, with the potential to smuggle multi-kilo loads of cocaine or heroin. Typically they will try to smuggle the drugs into the UK as they disembark, either in their luggage or strapped to their bodies under baggy clothing.
SOCA and the UK Border Agency are also warning that criminals may attempt to corrupt crew members, whose access to all areas of the ship offers greater opportunities to conceal drugs. The drugs can then be removed either by the crew themselves or in collusion with passengers once the ship has reached a European port. Advice offered to the industry includes paying close attention to passengers who book last minute paying in cash, choose not to engage in on-board activity, or don't appear to fit in with the other passengers, such as younger passengers on a cruise targeted at the over fifties. They are also advised to be on the look out for crew who attempt to access areas of the ship not associated with their job or who appear to have close association with passengers who may be a risk. In May 2010, 2 unemployed Spanish men were jailed for 12 years each following a failed attempt to smuggle 33kg of cocaine through the Port of Southampton. 28 year old Tanasu De Jesus Quevedo-Ojeda and Oliver Vidal Hernandez, aged 27 had boarded the Black Watch cruise liner in Peru, and were due to remain with the ship as it travelled to the Canary Islands via Southampton. They were arrested as they disembarked the ship at Southampton on 27 March, in a joint operation between the UK Border Agency and Hampshire Constabulary. The cocaine, which they had been paid to deliver to the UK, Gran Canaria and Tenerife, was concealed inside leggings worn beneath their trousers). Later today, 4 Bulgarian and 4 Lithuanian nationals are due to be sentenced at Canterbury Crown Court for the attempted importation of 35kg of cocaine. UK Border Agency officers searched the MSC Orchestra at Dover on 6 May when it docked en-route to Amsterdam from Brazil and found the drugs sewn into body suits in the cabins occupied by those being sentenced.
Former criminal John Kibera robbed recently-buried coffins in Nairobi
John Kibera in Nairobi, Kenya grew up stealing. He and his gang would cruise funeral services and steal the coffins so they could resell them. They finally got caught by the police who shot dead his gang members. John survived by hiding in the casket and then running into the crowd, scaring everyone. They thought he had come back from the dead. John Kibera was born in 1978 and later started living on the street of Nairobi as a street boy. His life was never smooth after he was first arrested at the age of 16 years for stealing 2US dollar.After his released in 1996, he graduated from a street boy to a burglar, a bank robber and then a grave yard robber. During his life in crime, Kibera joined notorious gang Anthony Ngugi (Wacucu), Gerald Wambugu (Wanugu) and Bernard Matheri (Rasta) who were the most wanted gangsters during the 1990’s. As fate would have it, Wacucu, Matheri and Rasta were shot dead by the police and Kibera survived. John Kibera is now a crusader of peace and now educates young people about the futility of life in crime and has helped Kenya police to recover guns from other gangs who still do not come public. The reformed grave yard robber is a now a preacher and married to Mary Nyakeo Wanjui and he is blessed with two beautiful children.Mr Kibera has pioneered the establishment of Kibera Nyathira Foundation, A Project that has seen many street families happier though its feeding program to these street families in Nairobi and even offers numerous supports to youths. - Source- .topix.com
NEMA bans use of thin plastic bags in Kenya
Are you a manufacturer dealing in light plastics? In three months, you will have to use heavier plastic. The National Environment Management Authority has banned the use of plastics of less than 60 micrones, and directed the Kenya Bureau of Standards to ensure that all plastic bags and wrappers used are scaled up from 30 to 60 microns, in compliance with the East African Community Standard. Under the directive, the KBS will inspect industries and carry out surveillance and monitoring at entry ports to prevent entry of plastic below 60 micrones. NEMA acting Director Genral Dr Ayub Macharia said the the move is aimed at mopping up any plastic that cannot be recycled or reused. "NEMA has noted with a lot of concern that our landscape is flooded with many 'artificial flowers' of varied colors due to poor management of plastic bags and wrappers" he noted Already, developing countries such as Rwanda, Uganda and Tanzania have succeeded in successfully banning the flimsy paper. Macharia said it was unfortunate that since the ban was imposed two years ago, it had not been enforced . In his budget speech 2007, then Finance Minister proposed the ban of manufacture of plastics of less than 30 micrones, and a further imposition of 120 percent excise duty on all plastics used for packaging. He said nothing had been done inspite of the Finance Bill required to address plastics menace in the country. "KEBS should ensure the industry is in compliance wit the new gauge through factory inspection and ports of entry surveillance and monitoring to prevent entry of the bags" NEMA chairman Francis Ole Kaparo said "it failed because financial interests override the public interest,"
Asked why women were locked out of the meeting, an MP who attended the meeting said it was a "mens affair...This was a meeting for elders and leaders of our community and traditions dictate that women keep off," said the MP who did not wish to be named. - This after women were barred from entering a meeting in Nakuru
The UK Border Agency has released a list of unusual places they found drugs stashed in 2010 to show the lengths smugglers will go to. Skip related content
UK Border Agency reveals 2010's most unusual drug concealments
Home Office, 06 January 2011
The UK Border Agency has published a round-up of 10 of 2010's more unusual drug concealments, to raise awareness of the severe penalties imposed on smugglers and the skills and technology used by our officers to keep drugs out of the country. Brodie Clark, head of border force, said: 'These smuggling attempts show the lengths that organised criminals will go to in a bid to get drugs into the UK. 'Criminals are prepared to invest large sums of money to come up with ever better concealment methods because they know the potential profits from the awful trade in harmful drugs are considerable. 'However, the smugglers are no match for the skill of our officers and the state-of-the-art technology at their disposal. 'Our most important weapon in the fight against drug smuggling is intelligence. I would urge anyone with information that might be useful to the UK Border Agency to phone our hotline on 0800 59 5000.'
On 16 March, 1.1kg of cocaine, with an estimated street value of £270,000, was found concealed in packets of peanuts and cashew nuts in freight at Gatwick Airport. The drugs had been sent from Jamaica. The discovery led to the arrest of 50-year-old Neville Emmanuel Williams, from Cecil Street in Stourbridge in the West Midlands, who pleaded guilty to drug smuggling and was jailed for 7 years.With a street value of £6.7 million, 33kg of cocaine was found within metal drums containing powdered nuts on 17 May. The airfreight consignment, with a gross weight of 1,400kg, was examined in transit while at Heathrow. It had originated in Mexico and was destined for an address in Melbourne, Australia. Working with the Australian Federal Police, officers from the UK Border Agency sent a dummy shipment to the addressee. Once the drums were opened, police moved in and arrested 5 men (4 Americans and 1 Australian). Nearly 80kg of heroin, with a street value of over £5 million, was discovered in a lorry at Humber Sea Terminal, South Killingholme, leading to the conviction of 2 men from the Netherlands. The 52-year-old passenger, Mathieu Poulissen, had 10kg of the drug strapped to his body, while the remainder was hidden in the fridge motor of the refrigerated vehicle, and in the rear bulkhead and roof space of the cab. The 39-year-old driver, Marcel Rietman, pleaded guilty and received an 18-year sentence, while the passenger was found guilty following a 5-day trial and sentenced to 20 years on 18 June. With a street value of £2,850, 1kg of cannabis was found concealed within a wooden framed painting of footballer Emmanuel Adebayor at Coventry International Postal Hub on 29 June. The painting was sent from Togo and was destined for an address in Tottenham, North London. Investigations are ongoing.
In August, an estimated 10kg of cocaine, with an estimated street value of £0.5 million, was found hidden in yams on board a freight flight at Kent International Airport (Manston) which originated in Ghana. The vegetables had been cut open to conceal the Class A drugs and glued back together. Investigations are ongoing. A 72-year-old man from Wellingborough, David Pryor of Priory Road, was arrested at Heathrow Terminal 5 on 5 September after arriving on a flight from Tanzania. His luggage was searched by officers from the UK Border Agency, who found 3 woven baskets. They cut into the weave and unearthed around 4kg of heroin which a street value of £100,000. The man pleaded guilty in November and will be sentenced at Isleworth Crown Court on 10 January. Around 1kg of cocaine, with an estimated street value of around £70,000, was discovered inside glass ornaments at Coventry International Postal Hub on 11 August. Rather than being moulded inside the decorative objects - which included love hearts, chickens and miniature bottles - the powdered drugs appear to have been loosely scattered in air pockets. The parcel was sent from Peru and destined for an address in St Paul's, Bristol. Investigations are ongoing.
Worth up to £40,000, 110g of cocaine was found hidden in a birthday card destined for an address in Belfast. A 21-year-old woman from Glengormley was arrested on 18 November and released on bail pending further enquiries.On 11 December, a British man and woman arrived in the UK from Amsterdam and were arrested on suspicion of attempting to smuggle 0.5kg of heroin, with an estimated street value of £22,000. They are both believed to have swallowed packages of drugs, with further quantities stuffed inside them. After 8 days, the woman had to be hospitalised and operated on to remove drugs from her body. Both have been charged and remanded in custody.A 45-year-old from Trinidad and Tobago was arrested shortly after he arrived at Gatwick Airport on 17 December. David Louis Woods was subsequently charged with drugs importation offences after 1kg of liquid cocaine was found inside 2 bottles of Baileys. The self-employed mechanic has been remanded in custody. The UK Border Agency uses a range of methods to detect drugs being smuggled through ports, airports and postal sorting offices across the UK. These include:
Drunk driver: I am escorting my lonely goat on a date, officer
Astonished police who stopped a car for drink driving found a horny goat in the passenger seat being taken on a date by his farmer owner. The 54-year-old driver - who was three times over the drink drive limit - claimed his goat had been 'lonely' and he'd been to a friend's farm in Kretzyn, Poland, to meet a female goat. 'They had had a few vodkas to break the ice and then some more to celebrate and by the the time he left with his now not so lonely goat he was very drunk,' said one officer. 'He was very sorry but he was a danger to other drivers. He's lost his licence and he may well go to prison for a while,' he added.
More than £500,000 in cash seized at Manchester Airport
Home Office, 06 January 2011
More than £500,000 in cash was detained by officers from the UK Border Agency at Manchester Airport in 2010. A total of £509,770 was seized in 43 separate cases as officers carried out checks on passengers leaving the UK via Manchester Airport. The cases included 1 instance where the cash was hidden in a pack of disposable nappies in an attempt to bypass the security system. However, it was detected by specially trained sniffer dogs. Under the Proceeds of Crime Act, where a reasonable explanation for carrying large amounts of cash can not be provided, the money is detained and can only be returned if proof can be provided to a court that the money came from a legitimate source. Nearly 12 million cigarettes were also seized at the airport this year and over 500,000 passengers used their electronically-chipped biometric passports at the facial recognition gates. These provide travellers with an automated, secure route through the border. Colin Brown, UK Border Agency assistant director for the North West of England, said: 'UK Border Agency officers are working hard at all our ports and airports to prevent drugs, contraband or the potential proceeds of crime from entering or leaving the UK. 'Where we suspect that cash may be linked with criminal activity, we have the power to seize it and it will only be handed back if it is later proved to be legitimate. 'These seizures demonstrate the tight controls we have in place to stop the flow of illegal items. Tobacco smuggling is not victimless and is is often linked to serious organised crime. The funds are often used for much larger criminal operations, such as drug smuggling or people trafficking.'
UK terrorism security threat level raised at airports
The terrorist threat level specific to major UK transport hubs has been raised from substantial to severe, the BBC understands. The move includes airports and London railway terminals, although there is no suggestion of any intelligence of an imminent attack. The threat to the UK overall remains where it has been for the past year at the second-highest level, "severe". Security officials are stressing the change is precautionary. The overall national threat level at severe means a terrorist attack is highly likely. Beneath this are a series of threat levels for specific sectors of the national infrastructure which are not normally made public. But it is understood the threat level for major transport hubs, including airline terminals and major railway stations in London, has been increased from substantial to severe. Officials say if there was any intelligence of an imminent threat or a plot under way the threat level would be raised to its highest level, "critical". There have been concerns in recent months over the possibility of Mumbai-style gun attacks in Europe and the intelligence that led to this change is believed to cover Europe as a whole. In practice, the move means more police are likely to be visible at airports and railway stations from Friday. BBC security correspondent Gordon Corera said: "Officials are stressing that there is no intelligence of an imminent attack. This is more precautionary than anything else. "If there was some kind of intelligence of a plot under way, or that there was a threat to these locations tomorrow, then the threat level would go up to the highest level which is 'critical'. That's not happening. "These sector threat levels do change quite often. Normally the changes happen out of the public eye and officials don't comment on them. "But what we can expect to see is a greater police presence, particularly at airports and large railway stations." A Scotland Yard spokesman said: "The threat level to the UK is at severe, which means that an attack is highly likely, and has been since January 2010. "We will police accordingly and use a range of covert and overt tactics which remain under constant review." The Home Office said there was a "continuing need for everyone to remain vigilant and to report any suspicious activity to the police". A spokesman for airports operator BAA said: "Security at our airports remains at a high level and we remain vigilant at all times."
A KENYAN MAN HAS PASSED AWAY IN LONDON
A Kenyan man has passed away in London. The late Enos Ochola Mbogo, 65, formally of East Africa Industries, Nairobi passed away at Whittington Hospital in Highgate, North London on Sunday 2nd January, 2011. According to reliable sources, he passed away because of renal failure. At the time of his death he was living in London. He was the son of Mama Helen Omutho Mbogo and the late James Mbogo of Awach School, Kendubay. He was husband to the late Hilda Ochola and Benta Ochola of Watford. He was father to Mrs. Beatrice Charles, Rhoda, Kenneth, Joseph, Lillian and Derrick. Uncle to George Ogembo of Luton. Family, friends and well wishers in UK are meeting daily to make funeral arrangements at the home of George Ogembo, 40 Sanfoin Road, Luton. LU4 0RA. There will be a major fund raising to help in ferrying the body back to Kenya on Saturday 15/01/2011 at Lewsey Community Centre, Landrace Road, Luton. LU4 0SW, from 4PM. This is next to Lewsey Farm Library, at the Corner of Tomlinson Avenue and Landrace Road. You can park at Dominic Square. The nearest Train Stations are Luton Town or Leagrave Station, on the Thames Link Line from St. Pancras. Those who are unable to attend may help by putting money into the account of George Ogembo, Nationwide Account No.06935911 Sort Code 07-01-16. In Kenya you may Contact Kenneth Ochola Tel +254-722645655. For further information you may contact: Benta +447771618625, Mrs Beatrice Charles: +447984464560, Kenneth: +254722645655 or George Ogembo: +447886546183.
OVERHEARD BY MR. SEED: "Let's maintain high level of discipline! Zero tolerance policy on abusive language!" - Motivational Speaker, London
33 people convicted in London for drugs
33 people has been convicted in London for being part of a drugs and money laundering operation. It followed a series of raids by police on properties in London, Surrey, Kent and Hertfordshire in 2008. Ford was jailed last year but reporting restrictions were imposed while 16 related trials were concluded. Southwark Crown Court heard the operation was run out of Royal Oak Taxis in Paddington, west London, an outwardly legitimate firm that rented and repaired black cabs. But behind the scenes was a massive operation for organised crime networks, estimated to have laundered between £70m and £80m.
Cocaine on beach
The man at the centre of the Royal Oak Taxis network was its owner, a 47-year-old middleman, Eyad Iktilat, who drove a Ferrari and a Bentley with personalised number plates. Among his customers was Ford who received a London Fire Brigade Gold Award for rescuing people after a bomb ripped apart a bus in Tavistock Square. But after the 7/7 attacks he suffered personal problems and became a cocaine user. He was caught at his flat in Chertsey, Surrey, with 110kg of cocaine which had just been landed on a beach in Kent. Police said drugs seized in the investigation had a street value of about £10m. As officers searched the flat dozens of phone calls were made to three pay-as-you-go mobile phones as worried criminal contacts tried to find out why the pair were running late. Ford was one of 22 people arrested when officers from the Metropolitan Police Special Intelligence Section (SIS), supported by more than 500 colleagues, raided the homes. The simultaneous raids, the largest conducted by British police, employed a mechanical digger to ram through a wall of one Uxbridge home and followed 10 months of surveillance and bugging. The investigation, known as Operation Eaglewood, began in April 2007 after undercover police officers followed two known drug smugglers as they met Iktilat. They discovered "money mules" brought bags of up to £500,000 cash to the taxi company for it to be converted into 500 euro notes via Euro Foreign Exchange (EFX), a corrupt currency exchange company in Paddington. Investigators found EFX manager Jean-Claude Frigieri, 56, bought hundreds of thousands of pounds-worth of 500 euro notes from a banknote wholesaler known as Interchange.
British foreign exchange bureaux have since stopped selling the notes because of their use to organised criminals, who value the fact it is easy to conceal and smuggle them. Iktilat, 47, of Levita House, NW1, was sentenced to a total of 30 years having been convicted of five counts of money laundering and a series of drug offences and four counts of money laundering. The gang's main banker, Iraq-born Maythen Al Ansari, 42, was jailed for three years for money laundering after his home in Uxbridge, north-west London, was raided by police who used a digger to smash down a wall. The money laundering and drug distribution network was linked to up to 10 criminal gangs and had interests in Colombia, Spain, Israel, India, Dubai, Morocco and other north African states. Det Supt Steve Richardson said the operation dealt a "huge blow" to the British class A drugs industry. He said: "These criminals had been living the lives of wealthy businessmen through their criminal activity. "The lives they are now leading could not be more different." Two suspects, Carlos Tabares and Nicholas John "Peter" Tayler, are still wanted by police for offences including money laundering, drug trafficking and conspiracy to supply cocaine. The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said it was the biggest ever criminal case in London handled by the CPS and the Metropolitan Police.
A Kenya man dies in Qatar
A Kenyan man in Qatar passed away in his sleep on 30/12/2010.The sudden death of Silas Gitau Munga, 33 has shocked his family and friends who describe him as hard working, progressive, and a family man. Silas was the son of Charles Munga and Margaret Munga and husband to Wanjiku Gitau.He is the father of Munga Gitau and Kamau Gitau and brother to Peris Kinyanjui, Wilson Mwaura and Esther Ngendo. His aunt is Tabitha Gitau of Dallas Texas among others, cousin to John Kim of Boston, Rachel Gitau of St Louis among others. Family and friends are meeting daily at his father’s residence in Gathiga village, Kiambu County. - Diasporamessenger
Autopsy shows Kirima died of pneumonia
An autopsy report released on Tuesday afternoon shows that the late real estate tycoon Gerishon Kirima died of pneumonia and chronic renal disease. Family Spokesman Maina Wanjigi told a media conference that they had received the original copy of the autopsy report from the Government Chief Pathologist Dr Moses Njue. “That having been accomplished, we are glad that we can now move on to the next stage of burial arrangements. We could not do this before the post mortem was done because we do not want problems arising later people with questioning the cause of death and saying they were not represented." A section of family members have however questioned how he could have died of pneumonia whereas he was reportedly admitted in hospital five months ago. - CapitalFM
Prince William and Kate Middleton reveal wedding plans
The Archbishop of Canterbury is to marry Prince William and Kate Middleton at their forthcoming wedding, St James's Palace has disclosed. The palace says Miss Middleton will travel to the 29 April ceremony by car. But the newly-weds will return to Buckingham Palace in a glass carriage along Parliament Square, Whitehall, Horse Guards Parade and The Mall. The Queen will host a reception at the palace, followed by a private dinner and dancing in the evening. The couple, both 28, got engaged while on holiday in Kenya in October. Prince William proposed with his mother Diana's diamond and sapphire engagement ring. Their marriage will be marked with an official public holiday across the UK.
Raids lift the lid on bureau de change for criminals
Police used a digger to break through a wall during a raid on one of the ringleaders
After a massive police operation which uncovered a spider's web of links between gangsters, 33 people have been convicted in connection with drug dealing or money laundering. The case has highlighted what police describe as a "weak point" - the use of legitimate bureaux de change by money launderers. Hidden beneath a motorway close to London's Paddington station is a nondescript building - the former hub of a criminal business that allowed crime bosses to exchange "dirty" drug money for untainted currency. Royal Oak Taxis was the front business, outwardly a legitimate firm that rented and repaired black cabs. But behind the scenes lurked a far more lucrative business - a massive money laundering operation for organised crime networks from all over the country. The full details behind Operation Eaglewood can now be revealed after reporting restrictions were finally lifted, following 16 trials and the conviction of 33 people. The man at the centre of the Royal Oak Taxis network was a 47-year-old middleman, Eyad Iktilat, an Israeli Arab playboy who drove a Ferrari and a Bentley with personalised numberplates. Shortly before his arrest Iktilat had purchased a piece of land in Spain for £750,000 and was planning to spend another £2m on building a luxury villa. At the trial at Woolwich Crown Court, evidence revealed Iktilat and his gang helped launder around £80m over a two-year period - money from drug dealers based across the Midlands and south east of England. Among their customers was Simon Ford, a hero of the 7 July 2005 bomb attacks. Ford, a former firefighter, had been commended by the Commissioner of the Metropolitan Police for his actions in Tavistock Square, where a bus exploded. But Ford later suffered personal problems and became a cocaine user. He was caught red-handed with 110 kilos of cocaine which had just been landed on a beach in Kent and was jailed for 14 years. Other Iktilat clients included drug dealers Robert Gregory from Essex, Jason Topsom from Hertfordshire and Russell Tate from Cambridgeshire. Tate's brother, Pat, was one of three drug dealers murdered in a Range Rover in Rettendon, Essex, in December 1995.
Iktilat received large bags of dirty money from the dealers and then handed them over to Jean-Claude Frigieri, the Egyptian-born owner of a high street bureau de change in Bayswater, west London. Frigieri, from West Molesey in Surrey, changed the money for 500 euro notes which he bought in bulk from currency wholesalers Interchange, who, evidence revealed, were oblivious to his role. The 500 euro note - now withdrawn from sale in the UK partly as a result of Operation Eaglewood - had been notoriously popular with criminals because it allowed them to conveniently convert large amounts of money. For example, £1m in 500 euro notes weighs 2kg, compared with 50kg in £20 notes. The legitimate turnover of Frigieri's firm was no more than £20,000 a day. However, he was buying up to 450,000 euros at a time from Interchange and exchanging it for Iktilat. In April 2007 Scotland Yard launched a surveillance operation. They bugged Royal Oak Taxis and kept a close watch on Iktilat and his gang.
Over the months, Operation Eaglewood detectives amassed a wealth of evidence and by 13 February 2008 they were ready to move in. In simultaneous early morning raids around 500 police officers arrested 22 people in properties in London, Surrey, Essex, Kent and Hertfordshire. In one instance, a digger was used to smash through the perimeter wall of a house in Hillingdon, west London, belonging to Maythem al-Ansari - a "criminal investor" who posed as a legitimate businessman while financing drug smuggling and other illegal enterprises. It was Iraqi-born al-Ansari who had stepped into the role of money launderer when a frightened Frigieri pulled out. Wednesday's court case brings to an end a legal saga which saw 33 people sentenced to more than 200 years in jail.
Police froze a number of assets in the UK but say the gang invested in land and property in Israel, India and Dubai. Detective are also keen to speak to Nicholas Tayler, who is suspected of money laundering, and Carlos Tabares, who is suspected of drug trafficking. Both are believed to be on the run somewhere in Europe. The case has also led to questions over whether more needs to be done to regulate the foreign exchange industry. Detective Superintendent Steve Richardson, who led Eaglewood, said: "Interchange had the correct systems in place but it's widely known that bureaux de change are a weak point when it comes to money laundering." Dominic Thorncroft, chairman of the UK money transmitters' association (UKMTA), contacted HM Revenue & Customs to highlight the implications of the Frigieri case. Under money laundering regulations bureaux de change are supposed to monitor transactions and report their suspicions to the Serious and Organised Crime Agency (Soca).
Laws too lax?
But Mr Thorncroft told the BBC: "The money laundering regulations are not as precise as they should be. We highlighted this case to HMRC a year ago but they have not changed or amended their guidance at all." He said: "We think you should be able to document every penny, regardless of your status. There should be some obligation to understand what the money relates to." Frigieri's was one of 4,000 firms which hold a Money Service Business (MSB) registration - handed out by HMRC - which allow them to trade in foreign currency. Mr Thorncroft said: "Frigieri was going to wholesalers and saying 'I'm an MSB' and they were using that as due diligence." He said: "There is a fit and proper test to be able to register as an MSB but it's still quite easy to obtain." Mr Thorncroft said: "I can understand that the government doesn't want to bring in kneejerk legislation because of one case because at the moment there is no evidence that [money laundering] is systemic." An HMRC spokesman said: "HMRC reviewed its guidance but came to the conclusion that the existing material adequately explained the roles and responsibilities of businesses involved in these types of transaction. "Intermediaries are currently required by the regulations to report suspicious activity to Soca. "Adding additional burdens on intermediary businesses are therefore not necessary as the law and HMRC guidance is already clear on what they are required to do. "In addition, if an individual has been convicted of a money laundering offence they cannot operate an MSB and would not pass HMRC's Fit and Proper test. "
WEDDING INVITATION IN USA
Mysterious bird deaths hit Sweden
Dozens of dead birds have been found lying in a residential street in Sweden, days after thousands of birds fell to their deaths in the US. Police in the town of Falkoeping have told Swedish media that between 50 and 100 jackdaws had died. Some are said to have been hit by cars but others have no visible injuries. Parallels have been drawn with the mysterious death of about 3,000 red-winged blackbirds in the US state of Arkansas on New Year's Eve. Veterinary officials told Swedish radio that the case in Falkoeping was rare although they said there could be a number of reasons such as "disease or poisoning". Aftonbladet newspaper quoted one resident, Drilon Hulaj, who said that as he drove home late on Tuesday night the street in front of him was dotted with "hundreds of dead birds". Mr Hulaj said he had been immediately reminded of the events in the town of Beebe, Arkansas. Scientists have said the blackbirds there many have been affected by fireworks. There have been no reports of fireworks or storms in Falkoeping at the time.
Police arrest fake Kenyan doctors
Two quacks have been arrested for attempting to inject a HIV negative child with Anti Retroviral drugs (ARVs). The two identified as Fred Wafula alias Nabii (21) and Raphael Wamalwa (42) were arrested by administration police officers in Teso district as they attempted to give the jab to the child. The two had allegedly claimed to be professional doctors who could cure any ailment using a ‘wonder drug'. The District AP boss, James Wekesa said the two had convinced a family that they could cure their nine-month-old daughter who was suffering from vomiting and diarrhea. Wekesa said area residents, however, became suspicious and alerted the assistant chief, Andrew Etyang who in turn dispatched the AP officers from the Kocholia camp to apprehend the quacks. Donned in a red flowing gown, Wafula, a self proclaimed prophet was found red-handed attempting to treat the child using the ARV drugs. The two were arrested and taken to the DC's offices in Amagoro where they were held briefly before being transferred to Malaba police station. Nabii said he was a preacher with Jerusalem Church Miyanga in Bumula and confessed that he obtained the drugs and syringes that he was using to administer the injection from his sister. Area deputy public health officer, George Okisai confirmed the drugs as ARVs meant for HIV positive children noting that they are not found in the district hospital but are only available from a few NGOs involved in HIV/AIDS projects. Residents claimed the two quacks have been moving around fleecing people of their money after claiming that they were specialists in curing all diseases for which they charged at least Ksh1, 500 per person.
Naked shoppers snap up free clothes
It's cold outside - even in Spain - but that didn't bother legions of shoppers who queued in their pants and bras to avoid getting a bum deal. Under the slogan 'come in undressed and go out dressed', popular Iberian store Desigual promised a matching top and lower garment to the first 100 people who appear at one of their shops in the centre of Madrid just dressed in their underwear. Perhaps because of its range that verges on the edgier side of things, those who took up the challenge appeared to be mostly from the 20-something age group. Desigual has already taken New York by storm with underwear parties in two of the city's stores last year.
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New Year, New Start For FTSE 100 Index
London, Wednesday 5th January, 2011. The FTSE 100 got a flying start to the new year, soaring more than 100 points in the first minute of trading of 2011, and closing above the 6000-mark. After rushing to catch up with rises in the European markets which were not closed on Monday, the day's gains were driven by a strong performance in banking and commodity stocks. Oil giant BP led the pack, with a 5.8% uplift in share price, after reports emerged that rival Royal Dutch Shell had made a speculative takeover bid and that the financial implications of its spill in the Gulf of Mexico would be lower than previously forecast. British Airways stocks were boosted 4.9% and part-nationalised bank RBS closed 4.1% higher after being upgraded by analysts earlier in the day. With many people typically booking their annual family holiday at the start of the year, TUI Travel also saw shares jump. However, not all sectors performed as well. Food companies felt the bite with catering giant Compass Group and manufacturer Associated British Foods losing 2.2% and 1.4% respectively. Energy companies Essar and International Power were also among the biggest losers. The FTSE 100 closed up 113 points at 6013.87.
FTSE 100 1-Day Chart
Milton Keynes forgers are jailed
Home Office, 30 December 2010
Two Ghanaian nationals have received prison sentences following the discovery of a 'forgery factory' in Milton Keynes. Officers from the UK Border Agency's South East immigration crime team discovered dozens of fake documents including blank visas, passports and birth certificates when they raided a property on The Oval in Oldbrook on Thursday 7 October. They also found computers, stamps, scanners and printers which were being used in the manufacture of fake documents, plus templates for forging work permits, bank statements, pay slips and Home Office letters. Four people were arrested, including 40-year-old Dominic Owusu-Ansah and 33-year-old Abel Agyepong. Appearing before Huntingdon Crown Court on Wednesday 22 December, Owusu-Ansah admitted charges under the Fraud and Identity Cards Acts. He was sentenced to 4 years in prison, and will be deported at the end of his sentence. At an earlier hearing on 15 December, Agyepong admitted possessing false identity documents with intent and fraud. He was sentenced to 6 months in prison. Chief immigration officer Jo Howorth from the South East immigration crime team said: 'We have successfully disrupted a significant criminal enterprise, which was supplying fraudulent documents. 'There is no doubt in my mind that these documents would have ended up being used to create false identities, or help people work, claim benefits or stay illegally in the UK.'
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Australia Town Warned About Crocs And Snakes
Flooded residents in Queensland have been warned to stay out of the water due to the danger posed by snakes and crocodiles. The Australian authorities are warning a higher than usual number of snakes have been reported around Rockhampton. The city's mayor Brad Carter also reminded residents that saltwater crocodiles have previously been spotted in the Fitzroy River, which has burst its banks. As well as the local wildlife, strong currents and large amounts of debris are causing concern for locals trying to negotiate the murky inland sea. Rockhampton is virtually marooned by a brown tide, with the level of the Fitzroy River having reached 30ft above normal. It is expected to peak on January 5. Around 400 homes are already inundated and several thousand more are at risk. Millions of pounds worth of crops have been destroyed, domestic insurance claims are expected to top £500m, and with three quarters of the state's coalfields unable to operate, the cost to the mining industry in lost production will be more than double that. Queensland is estimated to provide half the world's coking coal, and so an industry knock-on effect is expected worldwide. Military aircraft have brought in supplies, because Rockhampton's airport is closed, and only one road into the city remains passable. There are now real concerns about how the sewage treatment plants will be able to cope.
New Mystery As More Birds Drop Dead In US
Hundreds of birds have dropped dead from the sky in Louisiana just days after a similar mysterious incident left scientists baffled in Arkansas. The carcasses of around 500 red-winged blackbirds were found littering a quarter-mile stretch of road in Pointe Coupee, The Advocate reported. The state borders Arkansas where some 3,000 blackbirds died in unexplained circumstances three days ago. The remains of some of the birds found dead in Louisiana are being taken away for testing. A woman several hundred miles away in Kentucky has also reported finding dozens of dead birds in her garden. The mass deaths in Beebe, Ark, Arkansas, have puzzled scientists and wildlife experts. Witnesses reported seeing the birds falling from the sky late on December 31 into early January 1. Around 100,000 fish were also found dead along a river 125 miles away although scientists are not linking the cases. Officials are looking at various possibilities as to why the birds dropped dead - including being startled by fireworks, stress or hit by hail or lightning. Tests on the birds found in Arkansas showed they suffered internal injuries that formed blood clots leading to their deaths, The Associated Press reported. US scientists believe New Year's Eve fireworks may have forced the birds to fly low to avoid explosions, leading them to collide with objects. High winds and tornadoes also struck Arkansas on December 31, with the hardest-hit area more than 150 miles to the west of Beebe.
Champion’s wife wants divorce
The World beater Samuel Wanjiru (left) and his wife Teresia Kamau hold their daughter Ann Wanjiru for a photo
Olympic champion Samwel Wanjiru’s wife Tereza Njeri on Tuesday said she wants a divorce. She said she had made the decision because of what she described as his relatives’ interference in domestic matters. Refuting claims that she had reconciled with her husband, Tereza said she feared for her life and was no longer prepared to stay in the marriage. “We had no problem last year but it appears we have a conflict with his mother. I want a divorce now,” she said. Last week, the 2008 Beijing Olympic marathon champion was charged at the Nyahururu law court with threatening his wife with an illegal firearm. He was also charged with threatening to kill the family’s househelp Nancy Njoki and injuring security guard William Masinde. He denied the charges and was freed on a bond of Sh300,000, with a similar surety. The case attracted both local and international media attention. Two days later, Wanjiru said he had reconciled with his wife, which she denies. “We haven’t talked about anything, we haven’t discussed it yet,’’ she said. Senior resident magistrate Ms Alice Mong’are has set January 9 for mention and March 14 for hearing. Tereza says she wants part of Wanjiru’s wealth because he accumulated his riches when she was his wife. She also wants him to educate their two children. If it goes through, Wanjiru could become the latest sports personality after Tiger Woods to go through a messy divorce. - Daily Nation.
Jackson 'Already Dead' Before 911 Call
Michael Jackson was already dead when his doctor called for help, a preliminary hearing that will decide whether the doctor will stand trial for the star's involuntary manslaughter has heard. Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney David Walgren said evidence would show that Dr Conrad Murray also tried to cover up the fact that he administered the powerful anaesthetic propofol to the pop superstar. Dr Murray, who was treating the pop star when he died on June 25, 2009, is accused of negligence by administering a fatal dose of the drug. Mr Walgren said more than 20 minutes passed between the time Dr Murray discovered the 50-year-old pop star in his bed not breathing and when a member of Jackson's security team called paramedics.
Minister Kosgey quits and surrenders to KACC
Nairobi, Tuesday 4th January, 2011. Industrialisation Minister Henry Kosgey has now vacated office pending the determination of a corruption case he is facing. The Tinderet Member of Parliament told journalists at a media conference that he had already written to the President stating his intentions. It is expected that the President will oblige. Mr Kosgey also said he had opted to surrender to Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission officers, who had been looking for him since late on Monday. "I have today written to President Mwai Kibaki and Prime Minister Rail Odinga offering to step aside as Minister for Industrialisation to allow for this charges to be fully investigated," Mr Kosgey told journalists at a media conference in his office on Tuesday morning. The Minister was likely to appear in court later on Tuesday to face corruption charges, relating to the importation of over-age motor vehicles. An official at the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission which was given consent by the Attorney General Amos Wako to prosecute the Minister said they were preparing to arraign him in court "at any time." The anti-graft agency said it had lined up eight counts of abuse of office against the minister for allowing the importation of cars above the recommended eight-year limit. In his defence, the Minister however, told journalists he was innocent and maintained that all his actions were within the law.
VAT goes up in UK from 17.5% to 20% as from 4th January 2011 - that means almost everything goes up except food and children's clothing
PASTOR BONIFACE PUBLISHES A BOOK
Pastor Boniface Mbugua of IWRM Church London has published a book. The book entitled "Daily Bread Nuggets" is a daily bread version which help worshippers to retrieve the Word of God everyday. He will be producing a copy for every month. Seen on top is Pastor Boniface and his wife launching the book on New Year's Eve where Pastor Peter Wangaruro officiated the ceremony. Other members teamed up at the launching. The book is going for £5.00. You can order your book through 07826854898.
Ivory Coast mediation talks fail
Efforts by African leaders among them Kenya's Prime Minister Raila Odinga to resolve the Ivory Coast leadership hit a rock after defiant president Laurent Gbagbo refused to step down. Gbagbo is instead accusing the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States - ECOWAS and the United Nations of attempting to stage a coup in his country. Odinga, the AU chief mediator is now back in Abuja after running several meetings in Abidjan. On arrival on Monday Odinga met Gbagbo's appointed Prime Minister Gilbert Marie Ake Ngbo, then the UN special representative on Cote d'Ivoire Young Choi. The PM in the company of fellow mediators, Sierra Leone President Ernest Bai Koroma, Pedro Pires of Cape Verde Islands and Dr Thomas Yayi Boni of Benin then met Gbagbo's political rival Allasane Ouattara before holding talks with Laurent Gbagbo but all this came to naught at mid-night when Gbagbo stood his ground and refused any more mediation talks. Odinga and his team then flew back to the Nigerian capital Abuja to present his report to Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan who is ECOWAS chairman. The two are expected to hold a press conference Tuesday at 1o'clock local time. President Goodluck is expect to take a decision on the crisis that now threatens to disintegrate into a full blown civil crisis.
Rail fares up by 13% but Government claims war on motorists 'over'
Rail commuters heading into work this week face fare rises of up to 13 percent
Routes from Kent bore the brunt of the highest rises, while fares across the network rose on average 6.2 per cent – almost double inflation.Coupled with increases on bus fares and on the London Underground, the new year got off to an expensive start for the majority of commuters. A season ticket from Tonbridge to London will cost £586 more (12.7 per cent) from today, at £5,192. Ashwin Kumar, of train user group Passenger Focus, said: ‘Some passengers won’t have any choice but to catch the train and for these passengers the railway won’t seem very fair or good value for money.’ But a spokesman for the Association of Train Operating Companies said even with the increases, fares cover only half the cost of running the railways.He added: ‘We know times are tough for many people but these increases will ensure that Britain can continue investing in its railways.’ On the day train fares soared, communities secretary Eric Pickles announced the end of the ‘war on motorists’.On Monday, Mr Pickles scrapped a national policy under Labour ‘restricting residential parking spaces and instructing councils to push up charges’.The changes will mean town halls will no longer be forced to limit the number of parking spaces when new homes are built, for environmental reasons, or be forced to charge excessive parking fees, which have damaged many high streets. In London, the western extension of the congestion charge zone has been removed.
New Flu Risk As Schools And Firms Reopen
A surge in flu cases is predicted this week as schools reopen and the UK returns to work after the Christmas and New Year break.
Close contact between so many people is expected to push the crisis towards an epidemic. One of the strains causing real concern amongst doctors is H1N1 - swine flu. Virologist Professor John Oxford from St Bartholomew's hospital in London has revealed the precautions he must take with it. "This virus, H1N1 is pretty special - it gets to the parts other flu viruses don't reach," he told Sky News. "I treat it with huge caution when I'm handling it in the laboratory, it does move down easily into the respiratory tree to cause problems quickly and it is targeting the younger age group." Since October, 39 people have died from different strains of flu and of those, only one was over 65 and 15 were previously "healthy". There have been 738 people requiring intensive care which is four times higher than at the peak of last year's pandemic and Professor Oxford fears more people will die from flu. "Unfortunately I do expect there to be more fatalities with it," he said. "We've got the vaccine; we've got the Tamiflu drugs, very powerful drugs, and we've got the knowledge of spread and how to break it with hygiene so no-one should die. "But the fact is some people don't bother getting the vaccine, some people leave it too late to get Tamiflu and some don't increase their hygiene. "So unfortunately, I think there will be extra people in hospital and unfortunately some of them may die," he said. Symptoms include a high fever, chesty cough, sore throat, aches, upset stomach, headache and runny nose. The most at risk groups are pregnant women, asthma sufferers and young children who are eligible for the flu vaccine jab, which also includes the H1N1 strain. If you are not in a high risk group and display symptoms of flu, Tamiflu tablets are available from GPs, according to experts. They can shorten the length of the disease and curtail it from spreading. revention is better than cure and the general advice is to take basic hygiene precautions, such as using tissues for coughs and sneezes, and washing hands regularly.
VAT Rise 'Will Cost Families £389 A Year' in UK
In UK, the VAT is going up by 2.5% as from Tuesday 4th January, 2011. The rise in VAT will cost families an extra £389 a year, Labour has claimed, as retail experts warn it will have a negative impact on sales. Campaigning in the Oldham East and Saddleworth constituency ahead of next week's by-election, Ed Miliband said the increase was evidence the coalition's cuts are going "too far and too fast". The Labour leader said the 2.5% increase would hinder economic growth, cost thousands of jobs and make it even harder for families to make ends meet. He told Sky News: "I don't think that this is the right decision to be making for the economy and country. "What we see is the economy in a fragile state. "We saw unemployment rise on the last set of figures, and raising VAT now, alongside £20bn in public spending cuts, will take too much money out of the economy. "We have a government cutting too far and too fast, putting our economy at risk and putting public services at risk." The figure of £389 a year is taken from a Lib Dem poster from the last general election campaign. Mr Miliband said it underlined the "broken promises" of Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg and the wider Government. But Chancellor George Osborne defended the rise, saying: "VAT is a powerful weapon to tackle debt and if we don't use it then the spending cuts would be over £13bn bigger. "When Labour was in government they accepted this, which is why Alistair Darling says he wanted to put up VAT. "Now Labour is in opposition, Ed Miliband has shown weak leadership by jumping on the bandwagon of opportunism." Lib Dem president Tim Farron said: "Ed Miliband has spent his first 100 days doing exactly nothing." He went on: "We're all working to clean up after Labour's disastrous 13-year house-party, Ed Miliband's still the sulky teenager trying to pretend it wasn't his fault." It comes as a report by the Centre for Retail Research and online shopping group Kelkoo claimed the VAT rise could cause a drop in spending worth £2.2bn in the first three months of the year. Richard Lim from the British Retail Consortium said: "With the weather and weak consumer confidence undermining the sector's performance in the run-up to Christmas, retailers are discounting in a big way now to make up for missed sales. "That may mean the impact of the VAT rise is lost amongst discounts, but ultimately retailers can't absorb the cost indefinitely." However, Sky's Midlands correspondent Darren Little said: "The VAT rise is relatively small, adding £2.50 to the price of goods previously selling for £100. "The rise will though have an effect on motorists, added to the January 1st fuel duty increase, a litre of unleaded and diesel has increased by more than 3.5p. "Many items like food and children's clothing are exempt from VAT and reduced rates will remain on items such as children's car seats and supplies of domestic fuel and power." The Lib Dems are also stepping up their campaign in Oldham East and Saddleworth with six ministers visiting this week, including Mr Clegg for the second time. Former leader Charles Kennedy, deputy leader Simon Hughes and Mr Farron will also be campaigning in the seat which Lib Dem candidate Elwyn Watkins lost by only 103 votes last May. David Cameron has pledged to visit, though there are suspicions the Tories are not mounting a serious challenge in the seat in order to give the Lib Dems a better chance of victory.
Mkenya atupa mawe kwa police hapo Barking, London
A Kenyan man living in Barking, London with his wife has amazed other Kenyans by his actions on Boxing Day 26th December, 2010. The man went to a drinking spree and then came back home to quarrel everyone around including his wife. He was shouting to everyone claiming that he is fed up with life. At last he took a phone and called the police that he is fed up with life in UK, he want to go home and they should come for him. At last the police came and took him. The man has no papers. On following day when he recovered from his hangover, he was very sorry of what happened. What next. The man is still in police custody. Ndiyo musimo: "Usitupe mawe police station."
Grief as Kirima’s body arrives
Family members and friends receive Mr Gerishon Kirima’s body at JKIA in Nairobi on Monday 2nd January, 2011
The body of prominent politician-cum-businessman Gerishon Kirima arrived on Monday in Nairobi from South Africa where he died while undergoing treatment last week. A cross-section of relatives and friends had earlier gathered at the Presidential Pavilion at the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport where the Kenya Airways plane carrying the body touched down at 4.15pm. A sombre mood engulfed the pavilion as the body, which was in a maroon casket, was received by members of the funeral committee led by chairman Maina Wanjigi and members of the family, who included his third wife Teresia Wairimu, brother Peter Kuria Kirima, daughters, other relatives and friends. Funeral committee members present were Mr Joseph Kamotho, Mr Jimnah Mbaru, Mr Peter Munga, Mr Charles Rubia, Mr Joseph Kaguthi and Bishop Michael Michuki. During a brief prayer ceremony held on the dais, Mr Kirima’s grandson, Gerald Kamau, moved those present to tears with a rendition of the Christian song “Amazing Grace”. In a statement, Mr Wanjigi said a post-mortem examination on the body would be carried out today by the government pathologist, Dr Moses Njue, at the Lee Funeral Home to establish the cause of death. Two doctors appointed by the family will witness the post-mortem. After the prayer meeting, the body was moved into a black Mercedes Benz hearse and was escorted by two police motorcycle outriders to the Lee Funeral Home, where it will lie until the funeral day. Mr Wanjigi said prayers will continue to be conducted at Mr Kirima’s Kitisuru home as well as at All Saints Cathedral from 6pm to 8pm daily. – Daily Nation.
Rachel Njeri still flying high in Kenya
Kenyan Gospel Singer Rachel Njeri living in Nottingham currently in Kenya is seen performing at PCEA Ongata Rongai on New Year's Eve on 31st December, 2010 where later she joined other musicians at KICC, Nairobi. From left is Rachel Njeri, Daddy Owen and Esther Wahome.
Mysteries OF THE Unexplained
How Ordinary Men and Women Have Experienced the Strange, the Uncanny, and the Incredible
In New Jersey, USA, on July 4th, 1906, William Mckeekin was married, but only an hour after the wedding he told his new bride that he was going to get a carriage. That was the last time anybody ever saw him again. Mrs. Mckeekin searched for 17 years for her 'dead' husband before seeking an annulment.
Why house prices in UK will fall in 2011
The new year is usually a time of optimism. You can look forward to a clean slate, to 12 months of learning from your mistakes. You will go to the gym every week, you will pay money into your pension, you will ditch that expensive petrol-guzzling people carrier for a more efficient model. But there's not much optimism to be found in the property market.
2011 — a bad year for vendors?
Last month property portal Rightmove published its latest house price index, highlighting that five of the last six months have seen sellers cut asking prices, with the latest cut of 3% (the equivalent of nearly £7,000 on average). According to the firm, prices have already fallen by 6.5% since June, with a further 5% fall expected next year, though this prediction is based on a significant increase in the number of repossessions. If repossessions do not rise sharply, then Rightmove reckons property prices will remain static over 2011. Rightmove is not alone in expecting a tough 2011. Estate agents Savills, Hamptons and CBRE have all warned of, at best, moderately falling property prices in the year to come. Let's take a look at why so many experts are downbeat about 2011.
When the credit crunch first hit, there was talk of a sharp correction in property prices of 25% plus. Prices had reached a level where borrowers were borrowing four or even five times their annual salary in order to buy, a level the housing market sceptics declared was completely unsustainable. And while house prices did drop, the drop was nowhere near as sharp and protracted as expected. While recent falls have pretty much eradicated the gains made since spring 2009, property remains far too expensive in the eyes of many — according to the latest Property Tracker Index from the Building Societies Association nearly two in five (38%) felt property in their area was over-priced, with 25% believing the property was overpriced by 10% or more! Many vendors are only too aware that the prices they are trying to get for their properties are too high. That's exactly why asking prices have fallen so consistently since the summer. For many who would like to buy, they will have to fall a fair bit before they are willing to part with their cash.
Getting the cash
This should all be great news for those looking to take their first steps onto the ladder. Sadly it doesn't necessarily work like that. A property, as with any asset, is only really worth whatever a buyer is willing to pay for it. And potential buyers have had their hands forced somewhat with the contraction in mortgage lending. Put simply, even if buyers would be happy to pay more for certain homes, they can't as lenders aren't willing to lend as much as they were a few years ago. The Council of Mortgage Lenders (CML) confirmed that for the last couple of months, gross mortgage lending levels have been at decade lows. It's mighty difficult to buy a property if banks and building societies aren't that keen on giving you a mortgage. And they don't think it's going to get better anytime soon. The CML reckons gross mortgage lending for 2011 will reach just £135billion, the same figure it reckons 2010 will finish on. To put that into context, in 2009 gross mortgage lending was £143billion, and in 2008 it totalled a mighty £253billion. Mortgage lending is tough and it's not about to get any easier.
Moving the goalposts
And that's before we even consider the regulatory changes the FSA wants to see come in, changes that will make it far harder for borrowers to access mortgage funding. Even the housing minister reckons he'll struggle to get a mortgage if the changes are approved! If you want to find out more, be sure to have a read of Safer mortgages mean lower house prices! There are also things like rising unemployment, government cuts and potential increases in interest rates to consider, factors that may lead to a rise in repossessions and forced sales, which only serves to further push prices downwards.
But we live on an island!
Of course, there are certain fundamentals behind the UK housing market that will always present a compelling case as to why house prices should rise. There's still plenty of demand — we are after all a nation where home ownership is seen as essential. According to the BSA report, 59% of respondents said they would buy now or within the next year if they had the resources, while the National Association of Estate Agents has reported a recent rise in the average number of potential buyers registered with member agencies from 218 to 241. And supply, while on the rise in recent months, is still horrendous — the National Housing Federation confirmed that over the past eight years, every single region of the UK missed its house building targets. The new government has unveiled a Localism Bill that it reckons will revolutionise homebuilding in this country, but even if it does, it will take a while before we see the results. With a finite amount of space, there are only so many homes that can be built anyway.
Every town is different
And different towns (and different properties within those towns) will enjoy different fortunes anyway. London, for example, operates in essentially a different market place to the rest of the country. Just because property in NW1 is having a great time of it doesn't mask the fact that other areas may be suffering badly.
What we know will happen
Of course, all of the experts could be completely wrong — it wouldn't be the first time. Perhaps the economy will stage a strong recovery and as a result confidence takes off and we all get buying again. Or perhaps the falls will be even worse than expected and we descend into the crash that plenty of people expected a couple of years ago. All that anyone can say with certainty is that those people who buy their home as a place to live in are less likely to be disappointed than those who buy with one eye always on the lookout for the next house price index.
IT IS LIKE THE BIBLICAL FLOODS
Australia devastated by floods - VIDEO
SAVANNAH PLAINS ESTATE ATHI-RIVER
Architect’s impression of Savannah Plains ‘Gatehouse.
‘Savannah plains’ is a 52 acre, high standard, ‘gated-community’ estate, located near Daystar University in the fast growing Athi River area. ‘Savannah plains’ offers you the best in a controlled development gated community. You have two choices; you can either purchase a fully serviced plot and develop it at your leisure, or buy a fully built, key-ready home. Whatever your choice, the estate will offer the best in standards, high quality workmanship, and a beautiful and well maintained estate.
Phase one plots are selling at an introductory price of only Ksh 1.5 million. Get in touch and reserve now.
Phase one: 1.5 million Ksh. - £12,500.00
Plot finance: 30 % deposit (£3750.00) & £210.00 / month over 5 years.
Or 30% deposit (£3750.00) & £310.00 per month over 2.5 years
Finance is available through HFCK & Equity Bank.
THE LAUNCH PHOTOS SAT NOV 27 2010.
H.E. Ephraim Ngare. High Commissioner. Mr. Francis Kamande. NACHU Chairman.
Some images of the day, Sat. Nov 27, London.
Please click the link below to see an article on the area.
Please click the link below for various speeches: H.E. Commissioner Ngare, Mr. F.Kamande & others.
FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CALL US ON: 0208-872-4147 OR GO TO OUR WEBSITE:
Graft: KACC gets go-ahead to arrest Kenyan Minister
Attorney General Amos Wako Monday directed the Kenya anti graft body (KACC) to arrest and prosecute Industrialization Minister Henry Kosgey over the car importation saga. Kosgey will now face eight counts of abuse of office relating to exemptions given for the importation of over-age motor vehicles. The AG has returned the files with instructions to the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission for action. KACC forwarded to the Attorney General's office files on four cabinet ministers linked to corruption late last year. It is alleged that Mr Kosgey cleared the importation of hundreds of old cars, which are more than eight years old- the threshold put by the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA). The cars were seized at the port of Mombasa last year in November because of documentation queries. Only Mr Kosgey's written permission can allow them in. The minister has been under investigation by KACC for graft. The latetst development could see the Minister join the list of senior government officials, including two Cabinet ministers, who have been forced out of office over allegations of corruption. The Minister is also one of the six Hague suspects named by International Criminal Court -ICC prosecutor Luis Moreno Ocampo.
THE WORST FLOOD EVER SEEN IN AUSTRALIA -VIDEO
Video of 'biblical' Australia floods aftermath as death toll up to 10 - VIDEO
18 found in truck container seized
Some 18 people described as Muslim preachers were on Sunday arrested while being ferried from Nairobi to Mombasa. The arrest of the preachers, who were ‘hidden’ in a lorry container, at Kyumbi trading centre on the Machakos turn-off to Nairobi has puzzled detectives. The preachers had national passports, identity cards and even voters cards, which they readily handed to the police to justify their claims that they were bonafide Kenyan citizens. “But our main puzzle is in this age of good and comfortable means of transport why the preachers chose to be transported this way. This is what detectives are trying to establish”, said Machakos police boss Charles Kerich. In their small bags, each had a Holy Quran and other religious literature as well as clothing. Mr Kerich said police stopped the lorry at the Kyumbi patrol base after a tip off and on inspection found the 18 inside. Police ordered that the lorry be driven to the Machakos police station. At the station, CID boss Samuel Kobina took pictures of the suspects before they were locked up. Speaking to the Nation, one of the suspects who identified himself as a Mr Mohammed said they had come to Nairobi to attend a routine gathering of preachers from all over the country in Eastleigh. “It is what in Christianity you call a crusade. In the Islamic world we call such gatherings Markaz Baabul”, he said. He said the lorry driver offered to drive them to Mombasa free of charge. “We requested the crew to bail us out as we did not have transport to take us back to Mombasa,” he said. Last year, about 56 Ethiopian nationals almost died due to suffocation as they were being transported in similar fashion to Mombasa. Unlike the preachers’ case, the Ethiopians alerted other road users of their predicament. – Daily Nation.
2011 nî mwaka wa gûthegea
I have received over 1,000 Christmas and New Year messages this season but the most interesting of all was sent to me in the New Year from Kenya and it is not far from my 2011 theme. The message was sent to me by Kenyan Musician Joseph Kamaru and read like this: "Wîthagathage na wîharîrie gûthegea na mîena yoothe. 2011 nî mwaka wa gûthegea na gûtheerema. Kuma kûrî Jothebu Kamaru wa Wanjiru, Nairobi" - Mr. Seed, London - Meaning get yourself ready for expansion as 2011 is the year of expansion but Kamaru was using very deep kikuyu.
Queensland city flooding 'faster than expected'
Floodwaters in the Australian city of Rockhampton are rising faster than expected, Queensland authorities say. The city has already been badly hit, with many people being forced to flee. More than 20 towns have already been cut off or flooded across an area larger than France and Germany, with more than 200,000 people affected. Earlier, a woman swept from the road in her car has become the first victim of the widespread flooding, and at least two others are reported missing. While waters are receding in some areas, in Rockhampton - a city of 77,000 - they have yet to reach their peak. Floodwaters are expected to reach nine metres (30 feet) on Monday and peak at 9.4 metres on Wednesday, threatening as many as 4,000 homes. Rockhampton's airport, a major regional hub, was closed to commercial traffic due to flooded runways, while many main roads and railways into the town had been cut off, and power supplies were disrupted. The city could be isolated for up to 10 days, reports say. "These waters are exceptionally fast, they're not to be trifled with and they're not to be taken lightly," said Alistair Dawson, Queensland's assistant police commissioner. Meanwhile, the weather bureau has warned Queensland residents of another severe storm, which is forecast to bring "damaging winds, very heavy rainfall, flash flooding and large hailstones".
One Rockhampton resident told the BBC there had been panic-buying in the city. "Lots of people have been stocking up on fuel. I also heard about one woman who brought 20 loaves of bread from a supermarket," said the resident, Petros Khalesirad. Rockhampton Mayor Brad Carter has said about 40% of the city could be affected, and warned the floods had swept snakes downstream. "Snakes have been swimming at people's feet as they make their way through the waters," he said. "I know one guy who killed four snakes this morning, one of which was a Taipan - the more it bites, the more it injects venom that could easily kill." The 41-year-old woman who was killed had been trying to cross the Leichhardt River on a causeway with one other car when both vehicles were swept away. Police rescued eight people from the cars, but were unable to reach the woman. Her body was recovered later. Rescue workers have also been searching for a man whose small fishing boat was swamped by flood waters in the mouth of the Boyne River, and for a swimmer who disappeared in the Fitzroy river, the Sydney Morning Herald reported. There are fears that damage from the floods could cost billions of Australian dollars to repair. Officials have warned that the mining, farming and tourism industries will all suffer. Recovery efforts are beginning in some areas where flooding has subsided, including the severely affected towns of Emerald and Bundaberg. Residents are preparing to return home, though the towns of Theodore and Condamine, which were completely evacuated, remain empty. In some areas, helicopters have been used to deliver supplies and food to cut-off householders.
More than 1,000 blackbirds fall out of Arkansas sky
Officials are investigating why more than 1,000 birds - most of them dead - fell out of the sky in the US state of Arkansas on New Year's Eve. The Arkansas Fish and Game Commission (AFGC) said it began receiving reports of the falling birds at about 2330. By midnight, more than 1,000 red-winged blackbirds had fallen in one area of the city of Beebe. The birds could have been hit by lightning or high-altitude hail, said AFGC ornithologist Karen Rowe. About 65 dead birds have been sent off for scientific analysis to determine the cause of death. It does not appear as though the birds were poisoned, Ms Rowe said. "Since it only involved a flock of blackbirds and only involved them falling out of the sky, it is unlikely they were poisoned, but a necropsy is the only way to determine if the birds died from trauma or toxin," she said. Tornadoes swept through Arkansas and neighbouring states on 31 December, killing seven people. However, the AFGC did not say whether the blackbird deaths could also be attributed to the storms. City authorities have hired a specialist waste-disposal firm to collect the dead birds from gardens and rooftops, and dispose of them.
Kenya and World usher in 2011 in style
Scores of Kenyans gathered at various venues Friday evening to bid 2010 farewell and welcome the New Year. In Nairobi, hundreds of Christians, flooded KICC and Nairobi Chapel Ngong road for gospel concerts to mark the New Year. Tanzania's Rose Muhando was among the gospel artists performing in the groove concert at KICC that attracted thousands of Kenyans. The crowd went wild when Pastor Uche of Nigeria took to the stage with his hit song 'My God is Good-oh... At the Redeemed Christan Church of God-RCCG solution centre thousand of Christian faithful ushered the new year with a powerful word from Pastor Esher Oba Sike. Pastor Esther asked Christians to watch out and be prayerful in the new year to avoid being crushed by the demonic forces. Catholic faithful also ushered the new year in a prayerful mood, at the St.Benedict Catholic Church along Thika road . Father Thomas Njue asked Christians to call upon the Lord in this year and avoid being drugged into corrupt company. Thousands of revellers trooped to various entertainment joints to usher in the New Year in style. Elsewhere, firework displays, parties and other celebrations took place around the world to usher in the new year.
US revellers cheered the traditional ball drop in New York's Times Square to mark the start of 2011. Earlier festivities ranged from the release of thousands of silver balloons in Tokyo, to the first countdown of a western new year in Hanoi, Vietnam. In Sydney, crowds watched what is hailed as the world's biggest New Year's Eve fireworks display. Dubai saw a spectacular laser and fireworks show at the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building.
Party-goers in Europe attended new year's events across the continent. In Spain, crowds also gathered in Madrid's Puerta del Sol square to take part in "Las Uvas" (The Grapes), a tradition in which people eat a grape for each of the 12 chimes of midnight. As the new year arrived, Estonia became the 17th country to join the euro currency, with Prime Minister Andrus Ansip marking the event by withdrawing euros from a cash point. Meanwhile in Greece, troubled by an economic crisis, many people spent Thursday queuing to pay road tax on time or qualify for a tax amnesty. In the Americas, some two million people gathered on Rio de Janeiro Copacabana beach beach for a fireworks and music show, and the country's logo for the 2016 Olympics was unveiled. In the US, meanwhile, New York's municipal authorities and warmer weather combined to clear the streets following the snowstorm which blanketed the city this week, allowing hundreds of thousands to gather for the famous Times Square ball drop at midnight.
"KARIBU MWAKA MPYA"
A large number of Kenyans and friends gathered at IWRC Church, Revival house, Manor Park, London on Friday night 31st January 2010 to celebrate the New Year with praises and worship. Seen in the centre is Pastor Muhoro and his wife as the ushered the new year. Several gospel singers attended the ceremony among them Mrs. Mary Njau from USA, Mrs. Joyce Muturi, Mary Mutungi and Beatrice Muniu.
From left to right is Joyce Muturi from West London, Mrs. Mary Njau from St. Louis, USA, Mary Mutungi from West London and Beatrice Muniu from South London as they ushered the New Year 2011
London's streets packed for New Year's Day Parade
Around 500,000 people packed the streets of the capital to watch the 25th London New Year's Day Parade.
A route running from Piccadilly to Parliament Square, via Piccadilly Circus and Trafalgar Square was filled with floats and performers from 15 London boroughs and 20 countries. The parade, which was led by the Royal British Legion, concluded with a rousing rendition of Land of Hope and Glory. Among the 10,000 participants were pearly kings and queens, a platoon of Star Wars Stormtroopers and a group riding miniature steam engines. Most of those taking part were marching bands and cheerleading squads - some from local schools and others from across the Atlantic. Organisers are sure to be delighted with the successful parade and how many people turned out to see it, as the event was beset by last-minute problems. A water main burst on the route on Thursday morning and Thames Water had to work swiftly to repair the damage. And the extreme winter weather of recent days in the US looked set to prevent many of the American marching bands taking part, as their flights were grounded and they were left stranded at airports. In the end, the last of the US groups arrived in London on New Year's Eve, meaning the parade went ahead with a full complement of 25 marching bands. - VIDEO
"HAPPY NEW YEAR, ARE YOU TWINS?"
Councillor Elizabeth Kangethe was busy wishing others a Happy New Year 2011 minutes after midnight. She came across two ladies who dressed the same Mrs. Mary Njau a gospel musician from USA and Pastor Jane Njiiri and asked them "are you twins?"
A NEW YEAR MESSAGE FROM MARTHA KARUA
We celebrate the passing and promulgation of our constitution, the promise of a new dawn. We mourn the stalling of the implementation process and the open display of leaders which now threatens to rob Kenyans of the new dawn. We also mourn the failure to resettle the IDPs who languish in worn out tents three years after they were displaced.
I remain committed to working with Kenyans of good will to transform our nation. Let us join hands to push for the timely and faithful implementation of the constitution in order to end impunity, restore the rule of law and bring justice to the suffering especially the victims of post-election violence.
As we transform our institutions, let us strive to transform ourselves, acknowledging that change begins with each one of us! Let us fight corruption and impunity from our midst and respect the rights of others. Together let’s build One Kenya, One Nation, One People!
I wish you and your loved ones safe travels, and a happy and joyous New Year, and I look forward to working with you all to move our country forward.
"Isaiah 54 ndilo neno la 2011"
Mary Njau from St. Louis, USA, ushering the New Year at IWRC Church, London with her song "Kwako Yote Yawezekana" and on right the New Year's Word of Encouragement was delivered by the Senior Pastor Boniface Mbugua who reminded the worshippers to trust God with the message of 2011 from Isaiah 54. Hundreds of worshippers attended the New Year's ceremony.
AMEKATAKATA CARGO ZAKE NDIYO AWE MWANAMKE
A man cut off his testicles - then hurled them into a park. The 22-year-old is believed to have carried out the horrifying DIY castration in a bid to change sex. He waited nearly 24 hours before staggering into hospital. On arriving at accident and emergency, he told stunned staff he had felt "a lot less pain" than he had expected. He left after being treated with swabs and stitches - and was advised to seek psychiatric help. A spokesman for Derbyshire's Chesterfield Royal Hospital NHS Trust said last night: "A man in his early twenties presented himself at the hospital minus his testicles, which he had removed the previous day. "He was treated, then discharged from A&E. We can say no more because of patient confidentiality - but this is pretty unusual." It is believed the man, who has not been named, was suffering from "gender confusion issues" and may have been attempting a home sex change before hurling his unwanted privates into Queens Park, Chesterfield. One local said: "It makes your eyes water just thinking about it. "A few people have stopped walking their dogs in the park for fear of what they'll dig up."
The Biggest Threats In 2011
It will soon be the shortest, darkest day of the year, and the economic mood is also pretty black. Everybody is fretting about the eurozone, inflation, sovereign debt, bond bubbles, trade war tensions, a China slowdown and whether their Amazon wishlist orders will make it through the snow for Christmas. There is a world of worry out there, which are the biggest threats to your portfolio?
The Bank of England abandoned its 2% inflation target yonks ago, and the consumer price index (CPI (Berlin: CEJ.BE - news) ) has now hit 3.3%. Even this is a fiddle, because inflation is actually 4.7%, according to the old retail price index (RPI). VAT rises in January, while food and energy are getting pricier by the day. The Bank of England is in a bind. If it doesn't raise base rates soon, it will lose all credibility. If it does raise rates, companies and consumers will crash and burn. Inflation is an even bigger problem in China, Brazil and other emerging markets, and reckless money printing in the US won't help.
Risk level: 7/10.
How to play it: Abandon bonds, embrace commodities, food producers, oil companies and anybody with pricing power.
As I wrote recently, This Sucker This Going Down. Fellow Fool Owain Bennallack is more confident, claiming Death Will Not Part The Eurozone. But even if the single currency lives on, or rather limps on, 2011 will be a traumatic year. Italy and Spain have to roll over debt worth hundreds of millions of euros while juggling with credit warnings in front of a sceptical German audience. Expect markets to panic every time the eurozone circus rattles into town.
Risk level: 8/10.
How to play it: Gold. Emerging market companies and currencies. Buying good-quality European companies on the dips.
Briton's net debt is 56.3% of GDP, but coalition government attempts to cut spending have already sparked riots in the streets. The US has ignored its $13 trillion debts and dished out tax cuts to the wealthy, while those countries that have embraced austerity, such as Ireland (Berlin: IIK.BE - news) , find it only makes things worse. Debt servicing costs are rising, populations are ageing, the bond markets are running scared and the only question is which country will be first to default, ahem, restructure. Hang onto your AAA ratings, it's going to be a bumpy ride.
Risk level: 9/10.
How to play it: Gold. Youthful, debt-free emerging markets. Norwegian krone.
The recovery has been built slowly, BRIC (news) by BRIC, but what if one of them comes tumbling down? Chinese inflation is at a 25-month high at 4.4%, while an apartment in Beijing now costs 22 times average earnings. QE2 is sailing full steam ahead into BRIC stock markets, ramping up asset bubbles and forcing central bankers to raise rates. Here's the most worrying signal of all: as we speak, every single IFA in the country is putting their clients into emerging markets funds.
Risk level: 6/10.
The world is having reservations about the global reserve currency, as the US Federal Reserve prints the dollar into debauchery. Stoking inflation to monetise the deficit may be the only way the US can ever tackle its debts, but it's a dangerous game. Especially since everybody is trying to debauch their own currencies at exactly the same time.
Risk level: 7/10.
How to play it: Gold. Commodities. Emerging markets and currencies.
Bonds were supposed to represent a flight to safety, not route one to risk. As the US displays all the fiscal restraint of Elton John at a flowery headwear auction, yields on 10-year US Treasuries have rocketed from 2.4% to 3.2%. If inflation takes off as well, bonds will look even less appealing. And none of this will help corporate bonds.
Risk level: 7/10.
How to play it: Diversification. Equities.
Unemployment has hit 2.5 million and rising. Despite almost two years of rock bottom base rates, consumers have scarcely made a dent in their £1.45 trillion of personal debt. House prices are set to fall, and repossessions rise. VAT is going up, so is energy. And that's just in the UK. The unemployment rate in the US is up to 17%, according to some measures, and house prices continue to fall. You don't want to be young and looking for work in Spain, or other afflicted Eurozone countries. Rising unemployment is generally bad news for shares, the only consolation is that it keeps a lid on inflationary wage pressures.
Risk level: 5/10.
How to play it: Shun consumer discretionary spending, just look how nightclub operator Luminar has been hit by rising unemployment rates. But people still have to eat.
And that's not all
Rising oil prices, Korean dictators, over-priced equities... what else is out there? Give your thoughts below.
"SMILES FOR THE NEW YEAR"
Mrs. Muronga (left) and Mr. Brian Mukiri and his daughters celebrating the New Year and Beth Kungu and Mama Shiku joins hand with a smile for the year 2011
Two killed in hot air balloon crash
A hot air balloon flight ended in tragedy after two men plunged to their deaths while attempting to climb to high altitude. It is thought the pair were trying to ascend to 20,000ft (6,096m) when something went wrong, resulting in the craft plummeting to the ground in Midsomer Norton, near Bath, Somerset. The balloon crashed into the grounds of a bowls club, narrowly missing a nearby row of terraced houses and a school. A ground crew tracking the balloon - including relatives of the victims - lost sight of it at around 9.30am, shortly before it rapidly fell from the sky, according to Avon Fire and Rescue Service. Witness Robert Biggs told a news channel: "It first sounded like a plane in trouble. It was more of a whistling sound. We looked up, there was a break in the cloud and this hot air balloon came hurtling down." He added that it crashed in the middle of a bowling green. Two off-duty firefighters were cycling nearby and went to the scene to help. But, by the time they arrived, the balloon's four liquid petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders were spewing flames, hampering any rescue attempt. Four fire engines were dispatched and an air ambulance attended the incident but both men were pronounced dead at the scene. An investigation has been launched by the Air Accidents Investigation Branch and a team of experts made their way to the crash site today. But it is not thought that any other aircraft was involved in the incident. Police appealed to the public for information following the crash. Andy Elson, an expert in high-altitude ballooning, said a problem with the oxygen supply for those on board or with the gas cylinders would be the most likely cause of a problem at flights of over 14,000ft (4,267m).
PRESIDENT KIBAKI'S NEW YEAR'S SPEECH - 2011
President Kibaki on Friday sent a New Year message of goodwill to Kenyans in which he praised their achievements in 2010.
He spoke of the challenges ahead, including the likely trial of six Kenyans at the International Criminal Court at The Hague over election-related violence that nearly broke Kenya three years ago.
The following is an edited version of his full speech:
“I am delighted to address you, as we usher in the New Year – 2011. I take this opportunity to wish you all a happy and prosperous new year. In the past year, we achieved important milestones in various areas of national endeavour. Among these milestones was the promulgation of the new Constitution.
The focus now is, on the implementation process, so that we can reap the benefits of the new dispensation. As the New Year commences, I urge MPs, all public institutions and other stakeholders to play their respective roles effectively, in order for us to meet the timelines laid out in the Fifth Schedule of our Constitution.
On the economic front, we have closed the year on a positive note. The economy recorded a 5 per cent growth rate compared to 2.6 percent the previous year.
The economy is projected to expand by 6 per cent in the coming year. An expanding economy means more opportunities for our people.
This is why our sights are set on a double-digit economic growth that creates more jobs.
This is important because the empowerment of our youth will remain a priority in the New Year.
I wish to note that the Government remains committed to seeking justice for victims of the post election violence.
As will be recalled, two years ago, the Government introduced two Bills namely; the Special Tribunal for Kenya Bill and the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, seeking the establishment of a Special Tribunal to try persons bearing responsibility for the post-election violence.
Although these Bills were rejected by Parliament, the Grand Coalition Government remains committed to a local judicial process and will accordingly take the necessary steps. As the process of dispensing justice gets underway in the New Year, I urge Kenyans to remain calm and demonstrate tolerance and patience.
We must all take due care to ensure that the process of seeking justice, does not erode the gains we have made in the direction of national healing and reconciliation.
In the spirit of good neighbourliness, I wish to extend our best wishes to the government and people of the Sudan, as they prepare to vote in the January 9th referendum. It is our hope that peace will prevail during and after the process.
Thank you and God bless you all.”
Prison blazes as inmates riot
Specialist officers have been called in after about 40 prisoners began a riot and set alight an open prison in West Sussex. The prisoners at HMP Ford near Arundel, began smashing windows, activating fire alarms before setting the building alight at about midnightStaff were forced to retreat from the section and police and specialist prison officers were called in. A Ministry of Justice spokesman said no injuries to prisoners or staff had been reported. A Prison Service spokesman later confirmed that fires had been started in a small number of buildings at the site. The only sign of the disturbance from the main road was white smoke which could be seen billowing from one of the low level buildings which make up the prison. Security officers were posted at points along the perimeter of the site. A sign on the inside of the door to the main gate and visitor centre reads: "During Tornado, keep locked."
Eight people die in Kenya road accidents
Nairobi, Friday 31st December, 2010. Eight people perished Thursday night in separate road accidents as the month of December comes to a close. In the first accident, five people died when a Toyota station wagon they were travelling in collided head on with a nissan matatu near Maragua Bridge where seven members of a family died on the eve of Christmas day. The burial for the seven is underway in Maragua. Several other people were critically injured during the incident. The survivors were rushed to Murang'a hospital. Three of them died on the spot while two succumbed to injuries while undergoing treatment in hosptal. Area OCPD Antony Onyango confirmed that two of the dead were brothers. 11 passengers in the nissan matatu were rushed to Muranga hospital with serious injuries. In the second incident, three people were killed and thirteen others critically injured when their vehicle rolled several times along the Narok- Bomet road. The accident occurred at Duka Moja, two kilometers from Narok town when the rear tyre of the nissan matatu burst. The vehicle was ferrying mourners who had attended a funeral in Kisii. Among the dead included the driver, a man and a six month old baby girl. The injured who suffered broken limbs, were admitted to Narok North District Hospital while those who sustained serious injuries were referred to Kijabe Mission Hospital. The local Officer Commanding Police Division OCPD Peterson Maelo however said that the fourteen seater vehicle was speeding before the accident occurred. Speaking separately, the Transport Licensing Board (TLB) Chairman Hassan Kamwaro asked the police to reinforce traffic regulations to curb accidents. Police records indicate nearly 400 people have died through accidents in the month of December alone.
Mwezetu mumoja na bibi yake na watoto wao wawili walienda Christmas Kenya kutoka Wingereza wiki mbili zilizopita.Walipokua wakirudi kutoka Kenya huko Jomo Kenyatta Jumatano jioni tarehe 29/12/201, walipatikana ati Bwana alikuwa amenunua cheti cha kuzaliwa cha Wingereza, alafu bibi na watoto wakapata kitabu ya Red. Papo hapo wakagunduliwa na documents zote zao zikawa cancelled. Kama ulinunua cheti, chunga maisha.
OVERHEARD BY MR. SEED: "We Kenyans are totally undisciplined people - good at violating the laws." - Hon. Martha Karua
2011 will be hard, warns Cameron
David Cameron has warned that 2011 will be a "difficult year", but insisted that Britain has a "really bright future" ahead. In his New Year's message, the Prime Minister said that much of the "heavy lifting" for tackling the deficit in the public finances would have to take place over the next 12 months. But he also sought to strike an upbeat note, saying that once the current problems had been dealt with, the UK could be "one of the international success stories" of the new decade. Mr Cameron stressed that he and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg were not making cuts out of "ideological zeal" but because the country had been "living seriously beyond our means". "The national interest dictates that we do the right thing, which is to act, not the easy thing, which would be to delay. In doing so, we should be clear: Britain has a really bright future to look forward to," he said. "2011 is going to be a difficult year, as we take hard but necessary steps to sort things out. The actions we are taking are essential, because they are putting our economy and our country on the right path. Together, we can make 2011 the year that Britain gets back on its feet." Mr Cameron said that when the coalition Government took office last May the economy was in deep trouble, but, as a result of the actions they had taken, it was now out of the "danger zone". "We have a credible plan for restoring confidence in our economy. But we have to see it through. A lot of the heavy lifting will happen in 2011," he said. "Each and every minister in this Government is acutely aware that the plans we have in place are tough, in fact incredibly difficult, but we are clear that the alternative - indecision and delay - would mean taking unacceptable risks with our economy, our country and our people." After a string of Liberal Democrat ministers were caught criticising their Conservative partners to undercover reporters, Mr Cameron acknowledged that coalition politics was "not always straightforward" but said both parities were committed to working in the national interest. "We don't agree on everything. We never said we would," he said. "But I believe we are bringing a new style of government. A more collegiate approach. One where we're prepared to argue things out and then act to do what we both believe is in the national interest."
The late Gerishon Kirima body arrives in Nairobi from South Africa on Monday 3rd January 2011
999! Is it still Christmas Day?
Police have released a recording of a woman who dialled 999 to check if it was still Christmas Day and to wish the call-taker a Merry Christmas Hertfordshire Constabulary has put the call, taken on Boxing Day, on YouTube to remind people of the dangers of wasting police time. In the call, made at 1.50am on December 26, the woman asks the call-taker if it is still Christmas Day, only to be told it is Boxing Day. When he asks "Have you got an emergency?", she replies no, then adds: "I just wanted to say, quickly, an important message to you if you could pass it on, OK, thank you. "Merry Christmas. Today is Christmas Day." Hertfordshire Police said at the time the force had already received 45 calls and it was during a busy period. A spokeswoman said the festive season, which includes New Year's Eve, is notoriously busy - last year, from 7pm on December 31 to 7am on January 1, calls increased by more than double the average for a normal Thursday to Friday night. She said the force released the Boxing Day call to remind people before New Year's Eve that hoax calls can stop important 999 calls getting through, as well as diverting valuable resources away from genuine emergencies. Jason Baxter, assistant manager at the Force Communications Room, said: "This kind of reckless behaviour could not only result in a criminal conviction for the foolish caller. "It could also ultimately put other genuine callers' lives at risk while they wait for their call to be answered or for officers to arrive."
I am looking for a translation of a Swahili proverb printed on a piece of fabric I recently purchased in Tanzania. It reads: "sitomsahau panya kwa kitendo alichonifanya"
Olympic champion Wanjiru in court over death threat
Olympic marathon Champion Samuel Kamau Wanjiru has been charged charged in a Nyahururu court with threatening to kill his wife and in illegal possession of a firearm. The two-time Boston marathon winner was also charged with threatening to kill their house help, Nancy Njoki,and wounding a security guard, William Masinde. Mr Wanjiru who appeared before Senior Resident Magistrate Alice Mong'are denied the charges and was released on a bond of Sh300,000 with a similar surety. It is alleged that the athlete attempted to kill his wife on Wednesday night at their Muthaiga home in Nyahururu. He was in possession of an AK47 rifle without a certificate. In his submission to court the prosecutor led by inspector Paul Ruto told the court that the renowned athlete arrived at his home picked a quarrel with his wife Tereza Njeri. It was then that Wanjiru attempted to shoot his wife but she managed to escape. The athlete is said to have turned his anger on the watchman who had intervened and hit him with the rifle butt on the cheek and the right hand. The firearm has been forwarded to ballistics experts for analysis. Through his lawyer Ndegwa wahome, Wanjiru pleaded not guilty to the charges. The case will be mentioned on January 9, 2011.
TWO interesting dates coming on 01/01/11 and 11/11/11
SWIMMING IN ICE
Wim Hof, of the Netherlands, who is known as the Iceman for his ability to withstand the extreme cold, is immersed in ice water in Hong Kong at an event to raise public awareness of global warming.
House prices rose slightly during 2010 says lender
House prices ended the year barely higher than they started, according to the latest survey from the Nationwide building society. It says prices rose by 0.4% in December, leaving them also 0.4% up on a year ago. It means the average UK home now costs just under £163,000. The Nationwide forecasts that house prices will continue to drift down in the first half of 2011, as they have been doing for the past few months. "Despite December's increase, house prices have fallen in four out of the last six months and it would be premature to suggest that the recent downward trend has been broken on the basis of one month's figures," said the building society's chief economist Martin Gahbauer. "However, the December figures do underscore the fact the current downtrend is only very modest, particularly when seen in comparison to the second half of 2008," he added. Many commentators expect house prices to fall over the course of 2011 - some more than others. While some estate agents and other property market businesses have forecast falls of up to 5% this coming year, other commentators and economists have suggested they could drop by more, possibly 10%. A key issue in 2010 was that potential sellers started to outnumber would-be buyers, putting downward pressure on prices, particularly in the second half of the year. That seems unlikely to change, given the current rationing of mortgage funds that is still being imposed by lenders. Mr Gahbauer said there were still too few buyers chasing too many properties. "There is little to indicate that buyer demand is set to pick up materially from current levels," he said. "On balance, a relatively stable picture, with the possibility of a small price decline, appears the most likely outcome for 2011 at this stage."
Elusive Saharan Cheetah Captured in Photos
An elusive Saharan cheetah recently came into the spotlight in Niger, Africa, where a hidden camera snapped photos of the ghostly cat, whose pale coat and emaciated appearance distinguish it from other cheetahs. In one of the images the sleek, light-colored cat with small spots on its coat and a small head is turning in the direction of the camera, its eyes aglow. Its appearance, and how the Saharan cheetah (Acinonyx jubatus hecki) is genetically related to other cheetahs is open to question, said John Newby, CEO of the Sahara Conservation Fund (SCF), who is part of the team, along with SCF's Thomas Rabeil and others, who captured the camera-trap snapshots between July ad August. What they know about this species comes from the few photos they've managed to capture. "I think we were more happy than surprised when the images turned up, because we knew cheetahs were in the general area because we had seen their tracks on several occasions," Newby said. "However, the area is so vast that picking up an animal as rare as this always entails a lot of luck and good judgment on where to place the cameras." The animal is so rare and elusive scientists aren't sure how many even exist, though they estimate from the few observations they've made of the animal and tracks that fewer than 10 individuals call the vast desert of Termit and Tin Toumma in Niger home. Fewer than 200 cheetahs probably exist in the entire Sahara. Losing this cheetah would also mean losing important genetic and biological diversity, as these animals have adaptations for survival in extreme desert conditions. Their home can reach sizzling temperatures up to 113 degrees Fahrenheit (45 degrees Celsius), and is so parched no standing water exists.
"They probably satisfy their water requirements through the moisture in their prey, and on having extremely effective physiological and behavioral adaptations," Newby said. In an effort to conserve water and stay out of the heat, the Saharan cheetah is even more nocturnal than other cheetahs. Spotting these cats in the wild has been a challenge. "They are incredibly shy and elusive animals," Newby said. In addition, they likely have broad home ranges since their prey - gazelles, hares, large birds and smaller rodents - are relatively scarce. Observations that have been made suggest they prefer caves and rock shelters as breeding dens. Among the threats to the pale cat are scarcity of prey due to poaching and overuse, and conflicts with herders over stock harassment and killing of their animals, according to SCF. Apparently cheetah skins are prized as prayer rugs or used to make slippers. "They are suspected of taking goats and even baby camels, and as a result are persecuted just like most other large predators," Newby said. "Work underway with local nomads is putting together the true picture of livestock predation in an attempt to reduce the arbitrary slaughter of carnivores that has massively reduced populations of cheetah and striped hyenas." Newby and Rabeil say the camera-trap study will provide tangible evidence for the cheetah's existence in the Termit area. "The more we know about the animal the better we can conserve it, including pinpointing key areas for extra protection," Newby said. "The cheetah's presence adds weight to arguments for the entire zone's protection as a nature reserve and strengthens our ability to raise support for conservation activities." The Saharan cheetah is listed as critically endangered on the 2009 IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. (IUCN stands for International Union for Conservation of Nature.)
UK Migration 'set to continue at current levels'
Net migration is unlikely to fall much below current levels next year, a think tank has predicted. Increased immigration from European countries not covered by the Government's proposed immigration cap, along with a downward trend in emigration, will all lead to net migration staying around the 200,000 level in 2011, the Institute for Public Policy Research (ippr) said. It warned that introducing "hasty measures" so the Government can try to fulfil its pledge of cutting net migration to the tens of thousands by 2015 would be damaging to the UK's economy. The ippr's Migration Review 2010/11 said that if the UK economy continued to recover, the number of people coming to the UK for work could increase. From next April, the number of migrant workers coming to Britain from outside the EU will be cut by a fifth and capped at 21,700, but this is only expected to cut overall immigration by two or three per cent. And emigration by UK citizens has dropped substantially - from just more than 30,000 in the year to March 2010, compared with 130,000 in the previous 12 months - and "there is no obvious reason why this trend should change substantially in 2011". Other forms of migration - refugee flows, family migration and the return of Britons to the UK - "look set to continue at roughly their current levels", it said. Immigration Minister Damian Green said: "The Government remains absolutely committed to reducing net migration to sustainable levels - from the hundreds of thousands to the tens of thousands within the lifetime of this Parliament."
Mysteries OF THE Unexplained
How Ordinary Men and Women Have Experienced the Strange, the Uncanny, and the Incredible
In Cambridge, Massachusetts, in 1879, Anna Fellows left her husband of three years, William. Twenty years later, in 1899, William Fellows came home one day to find his wife, Anna, in the kitchen preparing a meal, as though she had never left. Anna offered no explanations and the couple settled down together again, but again, after three years, Anna disappeared again, this time for good.
Bishop Waihenya (far left) from Oxford and Tim Mbugua caught at the Jamhuri Celebrations in London this month and on right a team from Kenya Society in the UK
Ally Kiba concert in Luton
Tripple EM would like to wish all their customers a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year. We would like to invite everyone on the 31st(New Years Eve) for ALLY KIBA's biggest concert of the year. Kuja rukisha mwaka na Tripple Em @ Roman Way, 93 Tomlinson Way, Lu4 0ql from 6pm to 6am will be serving nyama choma, ugali, kienyeji, kachumbari, soup and tuskers till the crack of dawn. Early birds tickets will be £10 please call the numbers on the flyer before Thursday and £15 at the door. Please don’t just tell a friend, tell ALL YOUR FRIENDS and will meet at TRIPPLE EM.
"MERRY CHRISTMAS AND A HAPPY NEW YEAR"
Miss Joy Wambui Mbugua (far left) daughter of Rev. Kibathi of PCEA Outreach and Miss Watiri Kumacha of Thatched House watching a Christmas Gift competition at the PCEA Outreach Church Dinner in London early this month. The fastest person to open the gift got a prize.
Kibaki assents to three crucial constitution bills
President Mwai Kibaki has signed into law, three Bills establishing the Commission on Implementation of the new Constitution, Revenue Allocation Commission and the Judicial Service Commission, marking a major milestone in the Constitution implementation process ahead of the New Year. A Nairobi lawyer, Mr. Charles Nyachae will chair the crucial Commission on Implementation of the new Constitution. The Commission will oversee implementation of the country's constitution which was promulgated in August this year. Mr. Nyachae and members of his commission were interviewed by the Public Service Commission of Kenya and later vetted and approved by Parliament. Other eight members to the Commission are Prof Peter Wanyande, Dr Ibrahim M. Ali, Dr Elizabeth Muli, Dr Florence Omosa, Ms Catherine Muma, Mr. Kamotho Waiganjo, Mr. Philemon Mwaisaka Wawaka and Mr. Kibaya Imaana Laibuta. Members of the Judicial Service Commission of Kenya include Mr. Ahmednasir Abdullahi, a nominee of the Law Society of Kenya, Prof. Christine Kevin Abungu Mango and Bishop Antony Muheria nominated to represent the public. Other members are High Court Judge Isaac Lenaola and Emily Ominde who were nominated by the Judges and Magistrates Association to represent the Bench. The Judicial Service Commission will recommend to the President, persons for appointment as judges. It will also be responsible for reviewing and making recommendations on the conditions of service for judges and judicial officers and the staff of the Judiciary as well establish the National Council of the Administration of Justice among other functions. The Revenue Allocation Commission (RAC) will be headed by former Central Bank Governor Micah Cheserem. Other members of the Commission are Fatuma Abdulkadir, Meshack J Onyango, Prof Wafula S Masai and Rose B Osoro, Prof Joseph Kimura, Amina Ahmed and Prof Raphael Munavu. The secretary will be the Principal Secretary in the Finance Ministry. The Commission is critical in the new constitutional dispensation as it will be the key link between the national government and county governments in terms of equitable allocation of revenue. The RAC will also monitor the national budget allocation to ensure balanced development countrywide and also decide on the budget numbers.
America's top 10 miserable cities in 2010
Forbes.com's Misery Measure takes into account unemployment, taxes (both sales and income), commute times, violent crime and how a city's pro sports teams have fared over the past two years. It also factors in two indexes put together by Portland, Ore., researcher Bert Sperling that gauge weather and Superfund pollution sites. Lastly, it considers corruption based on convictions of public officials in each area as tracked by the Public Integrity Section of the U.S. Department of Justice.
Forbes expanded the list of cities under consideration this year to include the 200 largest metro areas (up from past years' 150), which led to a shuffling in the ranks. Any area with a population of more than 245,000 was eligible.
Residents of the Mistake by the Lake endure brutal winters, high crime and a tortured sports history. They are voting with their feet as the net migration out of the metro area was 71,000 over the past five years.
2. Stockton, Calif.
Stockton relinquished the most-miserable-city crown to Cleveland this year, but the city still faces jarring unemployment and violent crime. Unemployment is expected to average 18.5% in the metro area this year.
3. Memphis, Tenn.
Violent crime is second-worst in the country and public officials are getting locked up at an alarming rate. On a positive note, the city's sole pro sport franchise, the NBA's Grizzlies, is winning some games after losing 72% of the time the past three seasons.
Thousands of homes in this ravaged city were available for less than $10,000 last year. After shrinking for six straight years (including 9% in 2009), Detroit's economy is actually expected to expand in 2010.
5. Flint, Mich.
Flint is buying up houses and demolishing them in an effort to shrink the size of the city to a sustainable level. The area received $25 million in stimulus funds from the federal government to help with the plan.
The weather and no state income tax are nice, but the city rates in the bottom 10% of areas when it comes to commute times, violent crime and corruption. Foreclosures hit 7.2% of homes in 2009, 10th-worst in the U.S
7. St. Louis
St. Louis is a baseball town, but what about those Rams? The NFL team has won only six games out of 48 the past three years, the fewest wins in football.
8. Buffalo, N.Y.
This Snowbelt city is still the second-largest in New York state, but the population has fallen more than 50% over the past half-century as the industrial base waned.
9. Canton, Ohio
The home of the Pro Football Hall of Fame and President William McKinley has seen a net migration out of Canton in each of the past 15 years. Only 18% of the adult population has a college degree.
The Windy City flamed out in its bid to host the 2016 Summer Olympics despite a last-minute plea from President Barack Obama. Bigger problems are the nation's highest sales tax rate (10.25%) and long commutes.
GREAT MEN ALWAYS GO THROUGH PROBLEMS
In 1642, the year Galileo died, Isaac Newton was born in Woolsthorpe, Lincolnshire, England on Christmas Day. His father had died three months earlier, and baby Isaac, very premature, was also not expected to survive. It was said he could be fitted into a quart pot. When Isaac was three, his mother married a wealthy elderly clergyman from the next village, and went to live there, leaving Isaac behind with his grandmother. The clergyman died, and Isaac’s mother came back, after eight years, bringing with her three small children. Two years later, Newton went away to the Grammar School in Grantham, where he lodged with the local apothecary, and was fascinated by the chemicals. The plan was that at age seventeen he would come home and look after the farm. He turned out to be a total failure as a farmer.
His mother’s brother, a clergyman who had been an undergraduate at Cambridge, persuaded his mother that it would be better for Isaac to go to university, so in 1661 he went up to Trinity College, Cambridge. Isaac paid his way through college for the first three years by waiting tables and cleaning rooms for the fellows (faculty) and the wealthier students. In 1664, he was elected a scholar, guaranteeing four years of financial support. Unfortunately, at that time the plague was spreading across Europe, and reached Cambridge in the summer of 1665. The university closed, and Newton returned home, where he spent two years concentrating on problems in mathematics and physics. He wrote later that during this time he first understood the theory of gravitation, which we shall discuss below, and the theory of optics (he was the first to realize that white light is made up of the colors of the rainbow), and much mathematics, both integral and differential calculus and infinite series. However, he was always reluctant to publish anything, at least until it appeared someone else might get credit for what he had found earlier. - FULL STORY
NEMA warns over noise pollution
National Environmental Management Authority (NEMA) is asking the government to be strict when issuing Liquor Licenses to establishments' that sell liquor and offer entertainment. The agency says such establishments have been flouting the new laws on noise pollution. Nema acting Director General Dr Ayub Macharia said they have written to the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of State for Provincial Administration and Internal Security over the matter. "NEMA has observed that besides sale of liquor, licensed establishments such as bars, clubs and restaurants offer entertainment that includes live bands and playing of loud music" he said He added that the establishments are located in residential areas, near schools, hospitals and other silent zones where they cause noise pollution. The agency has therefore directed that establishments that will apply for the Liquor selling licenses (while at the same time offer entertainment) must demonstrate strict compliance with the provisions of the Environment Management and Coordination (Noise and Excessive Vibration Pollution Control) Regulations of 2009 before being issued with liquor selling licenses. "NEMA has directed that applications that incorporate entertainment have to be cleared by their respective District Environment Committees for advice on proper location to ensure that no noise pollution is allowed near residential areas, schools or hospitals" said Macharia in a statement He demanded that liquor licenses only be issued to entertainment establishments that will have sound proofed their premises to ensure noise is contained within their establishments and does not disturb others located beyond a radius of 30M. The latest tough conditions, come a day after the agency launched a 48-hour campaign to monitor noise levels as Kenyans prepare to usher in the New Year. Churches have also been put on notice Those who break the laws will pay a fine of not more than Ksh. 350,000 or imprisonment for a term not exceeding 18 months or both.
Mr. Martin Changole (Marto) of Luton has lost his brother back in Kenya the late Sidney Keitany Changole of Nairobi which occurred on 29th December 2010 when he had a tragic road accident on the Naivasha –Nakuru highway. He is the beloved son of Mr and Mrs William Changole. Loving brother to Martin Changole (Marto) of Luton, Brian Kipkemboi of Kenya Airways, Adelaide Jelagat of KTN, Collins Kiptoo of JKUCAT and Sharon Jepkorir of USIU all of Nairobi. Friends and relatives are meeting daily at his brother's (Marto) residence House 13 Baker Street, Luton , LU1 3PX every day. Those wishing to contribute to assist can do so to the following account: M-PESA +254723407162 BRIAN CHANGOLE Account Number : 85737686, SORT CODE: 09-01-27, Name: JEBET CHESEREM. The memorial services takes place on Monday 3rd January, 2011 at CF Fellowship, Castle, St. Albans, Luton, LU1 3AL as from 12.00 noon. Funeral arrangements will be announced later. Further information contact 07514940482, 01582518427 or 07961939939 and can also be obtained from the facebook group ‘Tribute to Sidney Keitany Changole’.
How schools rank across Kenya
The domination of private schools in the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education examination results extends to the countryside where public institutions have been largely edged out in lists of top 100 candidates in each province. A report complied by the Daily Nation from the official results released by the Kenya National Examinations Council shows that private schools dominated in the lists of top 100 students at both provincial and national level. The ranking examined at the list of top 100 candidates and the schools whose students appeared most frequently. The ranking does not, however, capture the mean grades of all schools across the country and does not imply these are the top schools in the country. In Western Province, Hill School in Kakamega was dominant, with 46 of the 106 pupils in that region’s list of top 100 performers. Its best candidate, Trevor Adika Luvai, was 15th nationally and third in the province. He shared his national ranking with another candidate. The top list in all regions exceeds 100 because of tied results. Eight students from Hill School Kakamega make it to the list of top 100 in Kenya. - MORE
Real estate magnate Gerishon Kirima is dead
Nairobi, Wednesday 29th December, 2010. Real estate business magnate Gerishon Kirima is dead. The controversial businessman passed on Tuesday at a South African hospital after a week of coma according to family sources.The former Member of Parliament and Assistant Minister died at the age of 88. His death comes at a time when members of his extended family are in a big tussle over control of his multi million shillings estate. Drama pitting the Kirima family started about five months ago when his daughters from the first wife stormed his home in Kitisuru and demanded that he be taken to hospital. After two weeks of unsuccessful attempts, they engaged top government officials and a cabinet minister who helped get Kirima taken to the Nairobi Hospital. Once at the hospital, members of Kirima’s first wife sealed all the entries to the hospital to block Kirima’s third wife Teresia, son and daughters from visiting him. A few days later, Mrs Teresia moved to court where she sought orders to visit her husband but by the time she went to serve the hospital, Mr Kirima had already been flown out to the United Kingdom for treatment. The court cases are still pending. More details to follow….- CapitalFM
Mary Njau for New Year at IWRM
Kenya Gospel singer from USA Mrs. Mary Njau currently recording in Kenya will be the guest singer at the New Year's Eve celebrations at IWRM Church, London. According to the Senior Pastor of this Church Pastor Boniface Mbugua, the New Year's Celebrations will start at 7.30 p.m. on Friday 31st December where there will be praise and worship, thanksgiving and new year's celebrations with Mary and other gospel singers. A night to remember as we usher the new year. The venue will be 500 High Street North, Manor Park, London E12 6QN as from 8.00 p.m.
Miliband warns over cuts
Labour leader Ed Miliband has described 2011 as the "year of consequences" as he warned in his New Year message that the Government's cuts were "forbidding and unheeding".
Miliband warns over cuts
Mr Miliband said the speed and scale of the coalition's deficit reduction plan was "irresponsible" and would be felt by hard-working families across the country. He added the cuts were "born of political choice" and "not necessity". He said Labour's job was now to persuade voters that the party offered "a better, more optimistic future for Britain".
Mr Miliband said: "Here at home, 2011 will be a year of consequences for Britain. Consequences that will be felt by hard-working families across the country. Consequences of the decision taken to reduce the deficit at what I believe to be an irresponsible pace and scale. "Many people feel powerless in the face of these decisions that will affect their lives, families and communities. The political forces in Whitehall which have made these choices appear forbidding and unheeding." Mr Miliband, who paid tribute to the country's military, also criticised the axing of the Educational Maintenance Allowance and the tuition fees rise, saying many people were worried where new jobs were going to come from in the wake of Government cuts. He added: "In 2011, many people will wonder what they can do. Some will ask whether there really is an alternative to this scale of cuts. Still more will shrug their shoulders at casually broken promises and conclude politicians are indeed all the same. "Labour's challenge and duty in 2011 is to be people's voice in tough times and show that these are changes born of political choice by those in power not necessity. And we will take the next steps on the journey to win people's trust that we offer a better, more optimistic future for Britain." Mr Miliband said he was now looking to win back the electorate's trust but admitted it could not be "put right automatically". He said Labour would be arguing for a "proper" economic strategy rather than a deficit reduction plan, adding it was possible to win concessions from the coalition following recent Government u-turns over school sport funding and Bookstart scheme to encourage children to read.
The new Sodom and Gomorrah?
The squalid conditions in which the refugees live in IDP camps pose a huge risk to the social development of children, many of whom are forced to share the little space they have with their parents and, in some cases, even with total strangers. Lack of privacy within internal refugee camps is turning resident children into decadent imps. he young here record everything their parents do, then re-enact the same with their peers during play time. Urged on by their childish innocence, these children are teetering on the edge of a moral dilemma beyond imagination. Read more..
KENYAN FAMILY DIED IN CAR ACCIDENT IN
SOUTH AFRICA ON CHRISTMAS DAY
Five Kenyans died on Christmas Day in a road accident in South Africa. The 5 people killed on a horror car crash in Edenvale South Africa on R24 west highway. According to reliable sources, the driver survived and is in critical condition in hospital. The driver who is from Burundi hit a post after losing the control of the vehicle. The names are Phyllis Wanjiku Njuguna and her sons Roger William Njuguna and Kamau Phillis, Anges Muthoni Njuguna and her daughter Joy Marline Wambui. They hail from Kwamaiko, Githunguri and they are daughters and grandchildren of former Nyaga Primry School head teacher. They are survived by their father William Njuguna Kimani, mother Monica Wanjiru Njuguna, Daniel Kahuro of (Johannesburg, south Africa) Abraham Kimani Njuguna and daughter of Agnes, Monica Wanjiru. Friends and well wishers are meeting daily at their father’s residence at Kwamaiko, Githunguri and at Daniel Kahuro Njuguna’s place in South Africa. They were members of Miguta catholic church. The bodies are still in South Africa and we are still arranging to ship all 5 bodies in Kenya for their final resting place. You can send you contributions to bank of America account # 488028666145 George Mbugua Dallas, Texas, USA. We will be having prayers on Sunday Jan 02 2011 at the following venues: 12500 merit Drive, # 1101, Dallas, TX 7525, Seattle, WA, Houston, Texas. For more information you can contact Daniel Kahuro (South Africa) + 27 731270379, George Mbugua (Dallas, TX) 214 463 3583, John Kimani (Tacoma, WA) 253 241 1642, Wanjiku Kimani (Houston, TX) 832 202 7061and Ruth Wairimu (Federal Way, WA) 206 931 1304.
Heathrow customs officials told not to stop drug smugglers
The order, which was contained in an email, was given because of a shortage of staff at the country's busiest airport. A copy of the email was leaked to the Sun, which reported that it asked staff to co-operate in managing the limited resources by requesting that they did 'not actively seek to identify any passenger with internal concealments for three days up to and including Christmas Day'. It also claimed that Lin Homer, head of the UKBA, was 'incandescent with rage' after learning about the contents of the email. Customs officials at Heathrow Airport were advised by the UK Border Agency (UKBA) not to stop and search suspected drug smugglers during the build up to Christmas, it has emerged. The UKBA has now confirmed the existence of the email and its deputy chief executive, Jonathan Sedgwick, has admitted it should never have been sent, as the instruction does not represent official policy. 'Our aim is to prevent and detect the smuggling of drugs however people try to bring it into the country,' he said. Mr Sedgwick added that there would be an investigation into the incident, as it is important to ensure there is no recurrence.
Weird santas around the world
A bungee jumper dressed as Santa Claus leaps from a platform above a beach in in Kuta, Bali and on right Boston, Massachusetts runners are seen in their Speedo clothing during the 11th annual Santa Speedo Run.
SMS lottery firm ordered to deposit Sh50m in court
Nairobi, Kenya, 29th December, 2010. – The High Court has ordered the promoters of a short messaging services (SMS) lottery currently running on local TV stations to deposit Sh50 million in court within two days to enable them continue with the raffle. Justice Mohammed Warsame directed Interactive Gamming and Lotteries limited to furnish the Deputy Registrar of the High Court with the deposit slip for the promotion which runs under the SMS code 6969 to continue uninterrupted. Interactive Gamming moved to court after regulator, Betting Control and Licencing Board (BCLB) threatened to terminate it following allegations that the promoters have flouted terms and conditions of their license to conduct the lottery. Through lawyer Kariuki Muigua, the company alleged that thousands of Kenyans had participated in the lottery and were eagerly waiting for the final draw. “Any termination of the lottery might cause public resentment or even civil unrest and disobedience,” Mr Muigua said. Lawyer Charles Mwanzia for BCLB, alleged that when the company was granted the licence, the prizes to be won were Sh12 million in cash, a brand new Toyota Hills, 8 Ford Rangers and 38 Toyotas. But thereafter, the company allegedly changed the prizes to include Sh100 million in cash, a Nissan Navara, 9 Nissan NP 200, 30 Toyota Vitz and 9 Toyota lsts. Later, the prizes were changed to a Jeep, 8 Nissan NP 200, 45 Toyota Vitz and 8 Toyota lsts. The lawyer added that in the letter to company, the regulator wanted to be furnished with names of its directors and the returns of the lottery since at inception, the company alleged that it was raising funds in aid of Mama Fatuma Goodwill Children’s Home. According the BCLB rules, every promoter is required by law to devote at least 25 per cent of its gross proceeds to charities. The board further says that the promoters were guilty of a criminal offence after transferring the raffle to Mzalendo Bora 6969 from 6868 and incorporating a new entrant known as Flint East Africa Ltd. The company says that it made the changes due to under-performance of the 6868. In the first lottery, participants were charged Sh50 for every SMS but are now charged Sh69 per SMS. Justice Warsame has directed the promoters to comply with the rules of the lottery as explained in a letter sent to the company by the board on December 20, 2010. The case is due in court on January 24. - CapitalFM
Unemployment in UK 'to hit 2.7m in 2011'
Unemployment will increase to 2.7 million and average earnings will rise by a below-inflation 2% next year, a leading business group has predicted. The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) said the jobless rate will reach 9% in 2011, with public sector employment set to fall by 120,000 and private sector jobs cut by 80,000. The group forecast that the number of people in work will fall by 200,000 next year. John Philpott, chief economic adviser to the CIPD, said 2011 will be a "fingers crossed" year for the economy and jobs. "If all goes well and the unexpectedly strong progress made in 2010 is sustained, the jobs market will be able to cope with the impact of the coalition government's spending cuts and tax increases without any significant rise in unemployment. "However, things only have to turn out a bit worse than expected in the wider economy for the jobs situation to weaken, which remains the CIPD's central forecast. Either way, this doesn't mean that we are facing a return to the dire recession days of late 2008 and 2009, but nonetheless 2011 will probably feel like another year in the economic doldrums, rather than the start of a return to prosperity. "Even if 2011 turns out to be a jobs-light, rather than jobs-loss or jobs-standstill year, the chances are that the bulk of any new private sector jobs will continue to reflect the experience of 2010, with part-time and temporary jobs in the majority. "Moreover, most workers will feel a squeeze in their real living standards, with pay rises still relatively modest against a backdrop of higher prices for many essential products and services and higher taxes." The report warned that the Government's austerity measures could spark employment disputes and social discontent, adding that 2011 could prove to be a "troubled year all round".
Raila gives hope to Hague suspects
Prime Minister Raila Odinga says there is still a possibility of withdrawing the trial of the six post election violence suspects from the International Criminal Court. Raila assured a delegation of at least 1000 leaders from Rift Valley province who visited his Bondo home that the country could still convince ICC to hand over the cases to local courts if a local tribunal is set up. He expressed fears that an intended move to withdraw the country from being a signatory of the Rome statute was futile since the international court would still pursue pending cases irrespective of the membership status of a country. "Article 19 of the Rome Statute enables a country to take over cases from The Hague as long as they establish a local tribunal to undertake the trials" he said. Odinga however faulted a section of leaders now crying foul over The Hague process for rejecting a bill meant to establish a local tribunal and now shifting blame to wrong quarters on sensing their mistake. "We tried to push for a local tribunal for the trials in vain even after the ODM parliamentary group and the executive committee endorsed the proposal but some of our party membes turned their back on us when we reached the floor of the house" he added His sentiments were echoed by Wildlife minister Dr. Noah Wekesa who spoke in Kitale during a funeral of his elder brother. The Premier at the same time censored a section of leaders from Rift Valley for propagating falsehood to gain cheap political mileage and cautioned residents to be wary of such oves as the country approached the 2012 general election. The visit at the Premier's Opoda farm saw elders from the Kalenjin and the Luo communities resolve to work closely for the mutual benefit of the two communities. At least 12 members of parliament including three cabinet ministers graced the occasion.
A KENYAN MAN HAS DIED IN LEYTONSTONE, LONDON
A Kenyan man has passed away in UK. The late Paul Kamau Njamwea, 34, passed away in his house on Sunday 19th December, 2010 while asleep in his house in Leytonstone, London. Unconfirmed reports suggests heart attack. The late Paul Kamau Njamwea formerly of University of Wolverhampton (LLB) 2004; University of Wales (International Trade Law) 2007 and Transport for London (TFL) which occurred on Sunday 19th December 2010 in London, UK. Beloved son of the late Joseph Njamwea and Alice Njamwea. Loving brother to the late Edward Kaniaru, Brian Gachuhi (APHRC), Anne Njoki and Thelma Muthoni (Catholic University). Friends and relatives are meeting daily at the family residence Hse 2931, Santak Estate, Ngong Road at 6.00pm. Those wishing to contribute to assist repatriate Paul back to Kenya to be laid to rest can do so to either of the following accounts: 1. M-PESA : +254726856665, ZAP: +254736578609 or 2. Local - Barclays Bank Kenya, Westlands Branch, A/C 3512059. Those residing overseas can use the account below: NATIONWIDE
We are catching up
I went to see a patient with my wife at Royal Hospital, White Chapel on Thursday 23rd December, 2010. I parked my vehicle at the back of the hospital and went into the hospital through the backdoor. I went through West wing where I found a group of nurses and before asking them to direct me to Cambridge Ward, a nurse shouted to me: How are you Mr. Seed. Can I help you.?'' I asked her to direct me to Cambridge Ward. Down to Cambridge Ward reception and before I asked the nurses the whereabouts of the patient, a Kenyan nurse shouted: Habari Bwana Seed, your patient has left here and he is now in George Ward on the 2nd floor. I know you.''. She directed me to George Ward and after ringing the bell in the ward for the door to be opened the nurse who came to open the door for me greeted me. ''Habari Mr. Seed, I know you and your patient is in Bed number 2. I am from Machakos, Kenya.'' I headed to see the patient but before arriving at the bed another Kenyan nurse Ndegwa shouted at me: ''Karibu Mr. Seed.'' My wife asked me: ''What is happening.'' Well done Kenyans - it seems we are doing well. I later talked to one of those nurses and she explained that there are over 20 Kenyan nurses in that hospital.
A Kenyan lady has passed away in Chicago, USA
A Kenyan has passed away in Chicago, USA. The late Serah Mukunda (Caroline Mukunda's Mother & Pastor Paul Kanjau's mother-in-law- Chicago, IL USA) went to be with the LORD on December 24th 2010 after a few months of battling with cancer at Northwestern Memorial Hospital in Chicago, IL. The family of Titus Mukunda Kanyi (Husband), Mrs. Caroline Mukunda Kanjau (daughter), Miss. Susan Mukunda (daughter), Paniel Kanyi Mukunda (son), Pastor Paul Kanjau (son in law) , Janelle W. Muturi Kanjau (grand daughter) announce with great sorrow the death of their wife, mother, mother-in-law, grand daughter, which sad event occured on December 24 2010, at the North Western Memorial Hospital, Chicago IL. She was 58 years old. Prayers will be held everyday at 7pm, (Sunday to Wednesday) at her daughter and son-in-laws residence. Memorial Service will be held on Thursday, December 30th at 7pm at 4751 N Sheridan Road, Chicago IL 60640. The Late Mrs. Serah Mukunda's body will be flown to Kenya and buried in their home in Kenya. Your prayers and support to the bereaved family will be greatly appreciated. For more info., please contact: Pastor Paul Kanjau 7737502603 (firstname.lastname@example.org), Caroline Mukunda kanjau 7738180898 (email@example.com), Paniel Mukunda 7742531540, Susan Mukunda 7742532333, Rachel Muthui 3123153662 or Pastor Paul Kamugu 7737045123.
A KENYAN FAMILY OF 5 IN SOUTH AFRICA
KILLED IN AN ACCIDENT IN SOUTH AFRICA
Mr. George Mbugua of Dallas, Texas, USA has lost his cousins and their 3 children in South Africa on Christmas Day. They are two sisters - one sister had two boys and the other one girl. The bodies are in South Africa and the family need to ship their body back to Kenya. The family needs your prayers and financial help. George contact in USA is 2144633583 or firstname.lastname@example.org. More information later.
Ivory Coast: Africa trio give Laurent Gbagbo ultimatum
West African heads of state have ended their Ivory Coast mission to persuade Laurent Gbagbo to cede power after the disputed presidential election. Mr Gbagbo is refusing to make way for Alassane Ouattara, internationally recognised as the president-elect. The delegation has said that if he does not relinquish power, he could be forced out by military intervention. An Ivorian TV station loyal to Mr Gbagbo has attacked anyone criticising his decision to stay in office. It indicated that African nationals from neighbouring countries working in Ivory Coast might be at risk if the threats of military action continued. Earlier, a United Nations peacekeeper was wounded in the arm with a machete when his convoy was attacked by a crowd in a Gbagbo stronghold. A UN statement said that one of three vehicles in the convoy was set alight in the incident in a western area of Abidjan. The UN, which has a force of more than 9,500 in Ivory Coast, has been accused by Mr Gbagbo of interfering in Ivorian affairs - and asked to leave the country. The UN has refused his call and called for power to be handed to Mr Ouattara.
Uganda yellow fever outbreak kills more than 40
Yellow fever vaccines are being imported for the north of Uganda to inoculate people against the disease which has killed about 45 people. People began falling ill about a month ago in nine northern districts, the country's health ministry says. A health official in Kitgum told the BBC the outbreak was confirmed as yellow fever on Christmas Eve. The disease, transmitted by infected mosquitoes, was last recorded in Uganda almost 40 years ago, officials say. Task forces have been put in place in the affected districts and isolation units set up. Bosco Ochola, chairman of the Kitgum task force, said his staff were treating about 65 infected patients. "This morning we got a phone call from the Ministry of Health that arrangements are being made from WHO (World Health Organization) to bring vaccines to cover the population," he told the BBC's Focus on Africa programme Yellow fever, unlike malaria, is transmitted by a type of mosquito which is active only during the day. Radio talk shows and dramas were trying to inform people of this, he said. The health ministry says at least 2.5 million people will be vaccinated when the vials arrive, Uganda's state-owned New Vision newspaper reports. The disease has a wide array of symptoms from nausea and vomiting to kidney failure, jaundice and bleeding. About half of those who develop severe symptoms and are untreated die from the disease.
Driver lost for three days in the snow
Mohammed Bellazrak's Christmas treat this year was simply getting home, after spending three days trying to get back in the snow. His family reported him missing when he couldn't get to his home in Trowbridge after he dropped his wife off for a flight from the airport, itself affected by the terrible weather. Police in Oxfordshire, using number-plate recognition systems, were finally able to flag down Mr Bellazrak and get him home on the big day. Further analysis using the technology found that he had driven around a few towns in Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Berkshire during his magical mystery tour, as well as stretches of the M4. Compounding his misery was a broken sat-nav system, while he had no mobile phone. It's just a good job that he isn't driving from Newark or JFK airports, after the snow has caused almost apocalyptic scenes on the eastern seaboard of the US.
Kenya Education Minister defends KCPE
Nairobi, Tuesday 28th December, 2010. Kenya's Education minister Prof. Sam Ongeri and stakeholders in the education sector, say calls to scrap Kenya Certificate of Primary Education examination could derail national efforts to realise millenium development goal on access to education. Ongeri scoffed at calls to abolish the exams saying KCPE has no criteria for excluding candidates from secondary education but is more of a monitoring tool for quality education. Speaking during the release of this year's KCPE results, the Minister emphasized the importance of KCPE examinations saying it is norm referenced rather than criteria referenced as some of its critics have portrayed it. "The KCPE examinations are not meant to lock out some candidates from transiting to secondary schools but rather to test the competency of the candidates," said Prof Ongeri. A motion by Ndaragwa MP Jeremiah Kioni seeking to abolish the Kenya Certificate of Primary Education examination has been met with mixed reactions among the education stakeholders. The legislator wants the government to instead provide for a continuous, uninterrupted education system from level one to form four in order to accord all Kenyan students universal basic education. Some education stakeholders have been supporting it arguing that the examinations are punitive and discriminatory for it allows some candidates to transit to secondary schools while condemning others as failures. Others have been opposed to it in equal measure terming the proposal for its scrapping as ill-advised as the examinations play a vital role in one's academic progress. Ongeri said that the government has put in place intervention measures to provide enough chances for candidates to optimize their potential after undergoing the competency test through the KCPE examinations.
He added that there will be a marked improvement in the transition rate from Primary to secondary school next year. Ongeri says several measures have been put in place to create more places in secondary and ensure a higher absorption into secondary school for KCPE candidates. He says the country will have a secondary school transition rate of over 72 percent by next year. He cited some of the measures as the introduction of free tuition in public secondary schools in 2007 and allocation of Sh6.3 million through the Economic Stimulus Programme for the construction of centers of excellence in every constituency. The Minister also said the expansion of infrastructure in secondary schools and the introduction of double shift scheme in pilot basis in selected secondary schools in Nairobi, Mombasa, Kisumu, Eldoret, Nakuru and Nyeri will provide more chances for the candidates to continue with their education. "Youth polytechnics are being revamped to accommodate those who are unable to join secondary schools for them to learn artisan skills," Form One intake is scheduled to start between January 11 and 13 and some of the more than 741,000 candidates who sat for the 2010 KCPE examinations are feared to miss Form One places as it has been the norm in past years.
Boys dominate in KCPE results
Duncan Kalware Maleya writes his KCPE exam at Kapkenduywo Primary School in Eldoret town in November. Boys have dominated the top ten national positions in this year's exam results released December 28, 2010
Nairobi, Tuesday, December 28, 2010. Boys have dominated the top ten positions nationally in this year's Kenya Certificate of Primary Education examination results. Linus Muchiri and Collins Kiprop were the joint best candidates amassing a total of 434 marks out of a possible 500. The top girl was Eleanor Karungari who achieved 433 marks.
In the results released Tuesday by Basic Education minister Sam Ongeri, boys took seven positions with only four girls figuring in the top ten.
The other top candidates were: Ochieng Rabin (433), Patrick Mumo (432), Winnie Gatiria (432), Oprah Omeka (432), Michael Maina (431), Faith Kwamboka (431), Navy Silas (431), Wilbur Omae (431).
Prof Ongeri said the examinations body- Kenya National Examinations Council (Knec)- had cancelled the results of 1,103 candidates over irregularities. However, in Nairobi girls emerged tops taking 55 out of the 100 candidates in the province. Winnie Gatiria was ranked first with 432 marks closely followed by Faith Kwamboka (431). Others were: Waithera Stacy with 429 marks and was ranked fifth, Gloria Shani 428 (6), Gladys Adhiambo 427 (7), Rebecca Ndumba 426 (8) and Barbara Warui 425 (10). MORE
Travel chaos as blizzards hit eastern United States
Blizzards are sweeping north along the eastern coast of the US and Canada, forcing the cancellation of flights and disrupting rail and road traffic. The winter storm has closed airports, stranding thousands of people in the busy post-Christmas travel period. The New York area was in the storm's bull's eye, receiving up to 51cm (20in) of snow, and even more in some areas. Massachusetts, Maine, Maryland, New Jersey, North Carolina and Virginia declared emergencies. The storm reached Canada's Atlantic coast early on Monday. Around 27,000 homes in Nova Scotia and 11,000 consumers in the New Brunswick area were left without power, according to reports. Blizzard conditions are buffeting New Brunswick, where winds were gusting up to 100km (62mi) per hour. nThe US National Weather Service said the monster snow storm was the result of a low pressure system which originated off North Carolina. The full-blown blizzard - meaning winds of at least 35mph (55km/h) along with snow and low visibility - intensified near Cape Cod, Massachusetts before pummelling southern New England and the New York City area. Blizzard warnings remained in effect for coasts of the northern mid-Atlantic states as far as Maine. More snow was expected in Boston and New York on Monday afternoon. The southern states of Georgia and South Carolina had their first white Christmas in more than a century. But Washington DC escaped the blizzard, with only a dusting of snow.
The timing of the snowstorm meant disruption for many thousands travelling after Christmas reunions and hampered the start of the shopping sales season and the return to work for many commuters. Announcing a state of emergency in Massachusetts, Governor Deval Patrick warned that the storm was "expected to produce widespread heavy snowfall, periods of zero visibility, high winds, power outages, coastal flooding, and beach erosion", reported AFP news agency. Power had already reportedly been cut to tens of thousands of homes in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. All three airports serving New York - JFK, LaGuardia and Newark Liberty International Airport - were closed on Monday morning. Flights were also cancelled at other airports across the north-east, with airport authorities expressing hope that flights could resume on Monday afternoon or Tuesday. In New York City, some 2,400 street cleaners were working 12-hour shifts to clear the snow from the city's 6,000 miles of roads - but inhabitants were advised to stay at home anyway. "I understand that a lot of families need to get home after a weekend away, but please don't get on the roads unless you absolutely have to," said Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Amtrak announced it was cancelling rail services from New York to Maine as well as in Virginia, after earlier doing the same for New York City-Boston services. New York's Long Island Rail Road remained suspended and many bus routes serving the east coast were also cancelled. The conditions were blamed for a car crash in Maine in which a 59-year-old man died, and for stranding two buses carrying some 50 passengers on a New Jersey motorway. State troopers carried water and food to some of the passengers who are diabetic. Stranded cars were hampering the efforts of snow ploughs and ambulances, but passengers on one bus have been rescued and an operation was under way to free passengers aboard the other.
A Kenyan man has been found dead in his house in London. More later.
Ally Kiba concert in Luton
Tripple EM would like to wish all their customers a Merry Christmas and a happy New Year. We would like to invite everyone on the 31st(New Years Eve) for ALLY KIBA's biggest concert of the year. Kuja rukisha mwaka na Tripple Em @ Roman Way, 93 Tomlinson Way, Lu4 0ql from 6pm to 6am will be serving nyama choma, ugali, kienyeji, kachumbari, soup and tuskers till the crack of dawn. Early birds tickets will be £10 please call the numbers on the flyer before Thursday and £15 at the door. Please don’t just tell a friend, tell ALL YOUR FRIENDS and will meet at TRIPPLE EM.
Armed and ready for Ivorian intervention?
The West African region has suffered more than its fair share of military coups and civil wars and its leaders have made a clear commitment to ensuring that these come to an end. Three African presidents are due to travel to Ivory Coast on Tuesday to give incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo a final opportunity to leave office, after the UN ruled he had lost last month's elections. If the arrival of the leaders of Cape Verde, Sierra Leone and Benin fails to end the stalemate over last month's elections, West African states have threatened a military intervention if Mr Gbagbo does not step down. The regional grouping Ecowas has a history of using force to restore order, when there is no other option. As early as 1978 the region's nations agreed to refrain from the use of force against each other and this was followed in 1981 by a mutual defence pact. But events in Liberia in the 1990s, when the country descended into civil war, called for more urgent measures. Troops were deployed to Liberia as part of the Ecowas ceasefire monitoring group, known as Ecomog. Its forces were used, with greater or lesser degrees of success, in Sierra Leone and Guinea-Bissau.
As part of the African Union's attempt to head off further crises, a West African standby brigade has been prepared and it is these forces that could then be deployed. Henry Boshoff of the Institute of Security Studies in Pretoria says that once a political decision is made to send the troops they could be in place in a relatively short period of time. "When the political decision is made, it will go to the chief of staff of Ecowas - that is the military command. "They will then do the planning, they will ask then for troop-contributing countries to contribute the force, they will decide on the concept operation - how many troops - and then the readiness of the troops." This could be done as in three to four weeks, he says. "Ecowas has been going through a series of exercises, scenario-building. So it is possible that it can take place so quickly," he says. This operation could be set in motion after the West African presidents report back. Their decision will have to be endorsed by the region, then the African Union and might have to be referred to the UN in New York. But at least in principle, troops could soon be on the way to ensure that the democratic voice of the Ivorian people is respected.
Heavy snow set to return across the UK
Heavy snow is set to return to parts of the UK over the next two days, the Met Office has warned. After a freezing Christmas Day, the temperature climbed on Sunday - but that looks set to prove only a temporary reprieve from the cold weather that has caused travel chaos across much of the country over the past ten days. The Met Office has issued severe weather warnings for today, with showers likely to add to snow already lying in northern England, Scotland and Wales. Meteorologists expect the situation to deteriorate during the early hours of Tuesday morning, as a band of snow moves across the country. London, the West Midlands, Yorkshire, the south-east, north-west, north-east, east and south-west of England are facing the prospect of 10cm of snow, with 15cm expected on higher ground. The snow and plummeting temperatures mean further disruption across the travel network is likely, with icy roads set to be a major problem all over the country. This month is on course to become the coldest December in the UK since records began, following on from the lowest ever Christmas Day temperature of -18.2C at Altnaharra in Scotland.
KCPE results to be released Tuesday 28th Dec.
Announcement of results for over 741,507 candidates who sat their Kenya Certificate of Primary Education Examinations KCPE- this are set for Tuesday 228th December, 2010. Making the announcements that will see the candidates join secondary schools in early January will be Education Minister Prof Sam Ongeri. Candidates will also be able to receive their results through a short text message to 5052 immediately after the results are announced or by visiting the KNEC website. KCPE examination is crucial for placement to secondary school education and with the announcement the pupils will now be placed according to performance in the various secondary schools in the country. The first batch since the inception of the free primary education 741,507 pupils sat for KCPE out of who 385,863 were male and 353,705 female in 23,114 centres countrywide. This was an increase from the previous year's 727,054 pupils. There were also 4,984 foreign candidates mainly from South Sudan. And to curb the jinx of cheating in examinations, the Kenya National Examination Council-KNEC chose to put in place a string of measures that saw the candidates frisked for any undesirable material that could aid the candidates in cheating in examinations. Apart from the index numbers, strict regulations were introduced for the first time the students were required to register for the exams using their birth certificates, colored passport size photos were compulsory requirement to avoid cases of imposters sitting for the exams. In recent days there has been debate for the removal of primary schools examinations in order to allow for 100 percent progression f candidates from primary to secondary schools. This could prove to be difficult since out of the over 20,000 primary schools that have 700,000 plus pupils sitting national examinations each year, most will not find places in just under 6,000 secondary schools in the country. It therefore calls for large investments in infrastructure expansion to accommodate the ever growing number of primary schools children who want access to secondary schools.
Airports should be fined for disruption, ministers say
Airports could face fines when passengers have their travel plans disrupted, the government has said. London's Heathrow Airport faced criticism last week when it closed snow-hit runways, stranding thousands. Aviation minister Theresa Villiers said an airport should be fined when it "does let passengers down and doesn't prepare properly for severe weather". A spokesperson from the Department for Transport said it was "considering options" for new legislation. "The Government is committed to reforming the way airports are regulated, putting passengers at the very heart of how they are run," the spokesman added.
Ms Villiers said ministers wanted to "give the regulator power to fine the airport where it does let passengers down and doesn't prepare properly for severe weather conditions". She added: "We want to make sure that airports are doing their very best to prepare for severe weather conditions. "They need to perform properly and they need to prepare properly." Transport Secretary Philip Hammond told the Sunday Times there should be an "economic penalty for service failure".
Under that system, fines can be imposed by the Civil Aviation Authority for failures in passenger queues at security checkpoints and for poor standards of cleanliness. The maximum total annual penalty is 7% of airport charges. Mr Hammond said he wanted the air regulators to have the power to impose additional financial penalties. "Greater weight needs to be given to performance and passenger satisfaction," he added. The Sunday Times says a new airport economic regulation bill would create new powers to impose fines for service failures and penalties for airports which fail to prepare for adverse weather. BAA chief executive Colin Matthews announced he would give up his annual bonus after recent disruption at Heathrow.
The company, owned by a Spanish conglomerate, found itself unable to clear snow and ice from runways and aircraft gates, crippling the airport and ruining the holidays of thousands. Flights were also disrupted at Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Gatwick, Luton and London City airports, while terminals across Europe were also closed. The EU Commission said the industry needed to "get serious" about preparing for bad weather.
Weird santas around the world
Mountaineering club members of Hanyang technical high school, South Korea, are wearing Santa Claus costumes while rock-climbing during an event of the Christmas holiday season on Ansan mountain near Seoul, South Korea and on right a South Korean diver dressed as Santa Claus swims with fish during a Christmas event at the Coex Aquarium in Seoul.
Kibaki among top performers in Kenya: Report
State House attention has been drawn to the results of the Infotrak opinion polls published in Friday's mainstream media. The opinion poll results which rated the performance of MPs in Parliament alleged that President Kibaki only managed two per cent overall approval rating. As Kenyans are fully aware, the President, though a Member of Parliament, does not sit in Parliament on a daily basis as other MPs do. The President only attends Parliament on special occasions and mainly during the State opening of Parliament in which he lays down the legislative agenda of the House in the ensuing Session. In the circumstances, there is clearly no basis of rating the President's performance in Parliament as compared to other MPs. We, therefore, urge Kenyans to view the result of the polls with the utmost contempt they deserve since the poll has no basis or objectivity and lacks in methodological merit. During the State opening of Parliament, the President has routinely outlined the legislative agenda of Parliament to the fullest expectations of Parliamentarians and Kenyans in general. This has often been attested by the content of his address and the observations of MPs during the week long debate on the President's address that follows the opening of Parliament. On the strength of this, therefore, the performance of the President should certainly be rated better than the Infotrak poll suggests. Moreover, as Kenyans are aware, the performance of the President speaks for itself as evidenced by the progress the country has made under his watch in all areas of national endeavour.
The progress we have recorded in infrastructure development, education, health, agriculture and other sectors clearly indicates that President Kibaki is among the top performers in the country. Indeed, a recent poll by Synovate carried out in October this year rated the President highest performer with 81 per cent approval rating up from 46 per cent. The question that comes to mind is how the President can rank highest in October and barely two months down the line drop to the lowest? Besides providing information, opinion polls, the world over, are known to be used as propaganda tools meant to influence the perception of members of the public in furtherance of the interest of a particular agenda or individual. It is regrettable to note that the results of opinion polls in Kenya on certain issues - especially politics - have become ridiculously predictable. This raises the crucial question whether pollsters are pursuing the truth or serving a premeditated agenda. As a society that is politically knowledgeable, Kenyans are able to question these results and their continued predictability is increasingly eroding the credibility of opinion polls in the country. In view of the false impressions that these polls can generate among members of the public, we urge pollsters to exercise caution and carry out surveys with integrity, professionalism and a genuine commitment to provide the truth regarding the subject of the opinion polls.
Kibaki sends goodwill message
President Mwai Kibaki has sent a message of goodwill and warm greetings to all Kenyans as they mark this year's Christmas season. In his message the Head of State noted that Christmas is a season of rejoicing in which Christians all over the world commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ. Said the President, "It is an important season in which Christians celebrate the coming of God into the world in the form of man to atone for the sins of humanity." The President also said apart from being a period of joy, Christians are expected to re-examine their commitment to the Christian faith and re-dedicate themselves to a new and fresh relationship with God through Christ. Urging Kenyans to also bear in mind that the spirit of Christmas season is that of peace, love and goodwill, the Head of State noted that even as Christians reflect upon their relationship with God, it is imperative for them to demonstrate the Christian values of forgiveness, reconciliation, kindness and service. "We should strive to forgive those who have wronged us and move forward in the love of God as individuals and as a nation", said the President. At the same time, President Kibaki has urged all Christians to extend a helping hand to the less fortunate in their midst saying this is an old age tradition associated with the Christmas season which brings joy and brightens Christmas for those disadvantaged in the society. Said President Kibaki, "As Christians, let us make an effort to help the less fortunate among us. Indeed, an old age tradition associated with this season is that of sharing gifts, smiles, warmth and spreading cheer. Let us extend a helping hand, no matter how small, for this will bring joy and make Christmas brighter for the disadvantaged members of our society." On security during this festive season, the Head of State called upon the police to provide adequate security in all parts of the country so that Kenyans can celebrate in a secure and peaceful atmosphere. Similarly, President Kibaki urged motorists and drivers of the public service vehicles to observe traffic regulations in order to ensure road safety during this season. The President also directed the police to ensure full compliance of the Alcohol Drinks Control Act which is already in operation. Said President Kibaki, "Equally important, I wish to note that we have a new law in place meant to regulate the sale and consumption of alcohol. The Alcohol Drinks Control Act, 2010 is being enforced at a time when there is a lot of merrymaking associated with the festive season." In this connection, the President urged Kenyans to refrain from overindulgence of alcohol and allow the true spirit of Christmas to be reborn not only in their hearts, but also in their homes as well.
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German Christmas tree turns out to be cannabis plant, police discover
A German man's plans for a merry spliffmas were scuppered after police discovered a large cannabis plant he had decorated like a Christmas tree, complete with tinsel and twinkling fairy lights. Christmas is often thought of as a time to relax, but this German reveller took things a little too far. In a rather tongue-in-cheek press release entitled ‘All you need is love or how a hippie celebrates Christmas’, police said: ‘When asked, the hashish fan told the perplexed officers that he had intended to add more decorations to the 'tree' and place presents under it, according to tradition.’The two-metre high marijuana plant was seized during a drug raid in Koblenz along with another 150 grams of home-grown pot. Police said: ‘The marijuana plant had been put in a Christmas tree stand and decorated with a string of lights.’ The man was released but will now face charges of drug possession. Earlier this week German authorities detained a 21-year-old man in Munich over his suspicious home-made advent calendar. It was found that instead of chocolate behind every door there was a little cannabis.
Rachel Njeri from Notts UK, launches her new album in Kenya
Kenya Gospel Singer living in Nottingham, UK Ms Rachel Njeri launched her new album on Sunday 12th December, 2010 in Wida Hotel, Kenya. The ceremony was well attended by gospel singers, friends, family and gospel ministers. On left photo is Rachel Njeri (in green), Njoki wa Mburu of Kameme FM Radio (brown) and Rev. Ruth Wamuyu (2nd right) and the photo on right is from right to left Ms Rachel Njeri, Rev. John Ndungu (Mwitio wa Mwiri) and the officiating Bishop Kibobi. US gospel singer, currently in Kenya, Mrs. Mary Njau also attended the ceremony. The ceremony was sponsored by Nairobi Institute of Business Studies, Nairobi Campus and Ruiru campus. For more information contact email email@example.com
Top 10 richest people in Kenya? - CLICK HERE FOR MORE
Revival house invites you for Christmas dinner, on the 19th of December 2010. The dinner is from 6:00 pm till late. There will be a three course meal in a 5star set up, lots of entertainment and music there after. Last ticket is available on Wednesday. Contact 07904615134, 07400951093, 07401531446, 07575099699 for a ticket.
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NAKURU WIDOW OCCUPYING HER HOUSE IN JULY 2010
Help The Seeds family settle this widowed lady
The construction started on 15th September 2009
The house construction now remains roofing and plastering and this will make a difference to Mrs. Lucy Wanjiru Maina (right) - a mother of six
It all started in a fellowship in London several years ago. A visiting preacher from Nakuru, Kenya was preaching in a Kenyan family house in London where they had lost their parent in Kenya. As the preacher was preaching she narrated the meaning of the word "poverty". "You people, you don't know what poverty is. When I talk about poverty you might not exactly understand but I can narrate what poverty is all about with an example of a widowed lady who was left by the husband with 6 children. The children do not go to school and the family is like nomads. They have been evicted from their rented houses for more than 9 times. They rent house, at the end of the month they cannot afford to pay the rent hence they are evicted. You are evicted until you don't know which estate you belong." the preacher explained. After the fellowship Pastor Jane Njiiri, the wife of Mr. Seed, enquired from the preacher about the woman and her where abouts. She contacted the lady and immediately she started to educate her children. It has been all along the desire of Pastor Njiiri and her family to build a home for this poor widow to make a difference in her life. Whenever Mr. Seed's family are in Kenya they always contact the lady who always join them in their family tour and she has become like a part of their family.
If you would like to help her in any way please contact her through Mrs. Lucy Wanjiru Maina on 0727307672 - FULL STORY
HOUSEHOLD GOODS NEEDED FOR THE THREE BEDROOMS HOUSE
You can donate whatever you like AND the Seeds family will buy whatever will not be donated.
1) 4 BEDS (4 x 6 @ KShs. 7,000 each) - 4 MATTRESS @ KShs. 5,000 each
2) 2 SOFA SETS @ Kshs. 20,000 each
3) Cooker (gas) Cylinder @ KShs. 5,000 – Cooker KShs. 4,000
4) Cooking Sufurias (8)
5) Cups - 1 dozen
6) Plates - 1 dozen
7) Glass (water) - 1 dozen
8) Blankets (10)
(9) Bed sheets (10)
(10) KPLC Power connection from main (KShs. 42,000) we have done all the wiring)
(11) Coffee table (3)
(12) Spoons (table and tea) - 1 dozen of each
(13) Wardrobe (2)
(14) Table and 6 chairs (for children study)
(15) Kettle - one electric and one ordinary one)
(16) Sugar dish, salt holder, knifes,
(17) Radio (1) old or new
(18) Television set (1) Old or new
(19) Stools (6)
(20) Cooking pan (1) Toaster (1) new or used
Whatever someone is touched to donate is highly welcomed. The Bible says in Proverbs 19: 17 He that hath pity upon the poor lendeth unto the Lord; and that which he hath given will he pay him again.
Mr. Seed - London
www.misterseed.com - firstname.lastname@example.org - Tel: 07951220695.
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