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Judiciary prepares magistrates for electoral disputes ahead of the August polls

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CJ Martha Koome(photo courtesy)

Judiciary will be training magistrates on electoral preparedness in a bid to ensure electoral justice is served on any issue that will arise during the August polls.

Chief Justice Martha Koome said 120 courts will be handling any election related disputes countrywide, where the magistrates will be trained at.

“We will soon also ask for a training to be mounted for 120 special courts that we gazetted in the judiciary to deal with the electoral offenses because we must continue to read from one script,” she said.

“When a prosecutor is empowered knowing all the ropes in the electoral law it doesn’t make sense if they are appearing before a magistrate who has no clue about what a kims kit or an electoral offense is. We must move in tandem,” furthered Koome.

She also said the cases will be presented to  the magistrate who should be able to understand all the processes of election and the law.

“There is a magistrate ready to hear whenever an offense happens anywhere across the country and they know it should be given priority.”

Koome further revealed that she  directed the magistrates handling hate speech matters under the National Cohesion and Integration(NCI) Act to finalize all pending hate speech matters by June.

“We are also working on a plan to operationalize hate speech courts in hotspot areas to ensure that they are ready all the time to hear all these matters,” she furthered.

The Compendium is a tool for prosecutors when guiding investigators and prosecuting Election and Hate Speech offenses.

Government sanctions oil marketers to release petroleum supplies

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Government has directed oil marketers to release petroleum supply after a prolonged shortage of oil in the country.

This comes after the weekend meeting with the oil marketers in a bid to resolve the stalemet.

“Depot, and retail station operators are hereby cautioned that in accordance with Section 99(1)(k) and 99(1)(n) of the Petroleum Act 2019, it is an offense punishable by law to hoard petroleum or to sell above the published price,” EPRA said in a statement.  

Long ques have been witnessed in different petrol stations across the country by motorists scrambling for the oil that it’s price has also been hiked.

Oil marketers have presented  demands to the government, claiming that the government owes them Sh13 billion oil subsidy fund that has taken a long time since January.

The shortage of fuel in the country has affected the economy making price of commodities to go up.

The bid is expected to change the situation which will change the crisis that motorcyclist and drivers are in right now.

EABL roles out domestic and family abuse guidelines

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East African Breweries(EABL) has rolled out guidelines to support employees facing domestic and family abuse.

Speaking at the roll-out of the guidelines, EABL Managing Director John Musunga the guidelines aimed at creating an violence free family environment.

Through the guidelines set, employees can get paid leave of up to 10 days per year to deal with issues arising from domestic and family abuse such as attending court, seeking legal assistance, relocating or other related activities.

“Through these guidelines, EABL is publicly communicating its zero-tolerance approach to domestic and gender abuse throughout our value chain,” said Musunga.

“We want an environment at EABL that promotes safety and is flexible, respectful, and supportive of employees experiencing domestic and family abuse so that they feel comfortable to disclose it and seek help,” he fingered.

This comes following a rise in cases of sexual abuse  and gender based violence which became rampant mostly during COVID-19 pandemic and girls were the most vulnerable.

EABL HR Director,Tope Akinsanya said that the company has set up a confidential counseling and support service accessible 24 hours a day, seven days a week for employees facing domestic and family abuse whether in or out of the workplace. 

EABL has also extended policies to it’s partners who include brand promoters, outlet owners and distributors.

These include the Human Rights Policy, Dignity at Work Policy and Brand Promoter Standards.

‘Tumeuona mkono wako bwana’ hitmakers gifted a bus at Churchill Show

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Zabron singers were all in joy after being gifted a bus by the founder of Mt Kenya University, Simon Gicharu during Churchill Show.

The Tanzanian singers made an appeal on behalf of the Adventist church that they needed a bus for their missions to promote the gospel.

The group was invited in Kenya to raise the funds to buy a bus after which they were invited on Churchill show.

“My name is Victoria Zabron. I love Kenyans which is why we have come here to boost unity. We are here to ask you to help the church which needs a bus. We need to do the work of God,” said Victoria, a member of the band.

“My name is DJ Kaz Kenya. I am an Adventist DJ and I sing with the Msanii Music Group. We have a concert and we wanted these Ministers of God to come and join us so that we can raise money to buy a mission bus,” stated DJ Kaz.

Churchill’s show Daniel Ndambuki then asked the MKU founder if he will facilitate the group with the bus.

In response Kenyan businessman Polycarp Igathe rose and confirmed that the billionaire would honour their wish. 

“Because they have travelled from far. The chairman here has asked me to announce that he will offer them a bus,” stated Igathe.

The event marked the first Churchill Show in TV47 since the programme was moved from NTV.

We will disqualify you,ODM warns aspirants claiming to have direct tickets

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Migori County Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Secretary Joseph Olala has issued a warning to aspirants claiming to have party tickets.

Olala said that the party will take legal action against those who are behind those reports.

He further noted that they will disqualify the aspirants who are claiming o be having reserved tickets.

“We will recommend to the top party leadership to disqualify those aspirants claiming to have tickets efore nomination,” he said.

The county ODM secretary also said that officers from the party’s National Election Board(NEB) will issue the certificates at the county level.

Olala also cited that the certificates will only be issued to the winners and nobody will influence the outcome.

“Certificates will only be issued to the winners those who believe that they can use their resources to influence the outcome of the primaries must think otherwise.

The Migori ODM primaries are slated for April 16th.

Government to investigate local producers on high price of products

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The Competition Authority of Kenya says it will investigate the high price of commodities from local producers who may have taken advantage of the change in the economy.

The authority noted that in spite of the increase in prices of most commodities, most traders are gouging to cash in on the situation.

According to the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics, food inflation rose by 0.83 percent to 8.69 percent in February this year.

This inflation was caused by the increase in price of basic commodities which has made the regulatory to plan on probing.

A survey will be done on producer’s production cost to protect consumers and have appropriate price.

This comes when the common market for East and Southern Africa have been urged to reduce tariff and non-tariff barriers to increase intra-regional trade which will offset wheat deficits occasioned by the Eastern Europe war.

KRA measures to stop smuggling at Kenya Busia border

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Kenya Revenue Authority is on the road to reduce the smuggling menace at the Kenya’s Busia border.

The Busia One Stop Border Post(OSBP) which was officially commissioned by both President Uhuru Kenyatta and Yoweri Museveni of Uganda in February 2018 was tasked with improving  surveillance at the border.

Four years down,the post that is managed by KRA has been keen in ensuring easy  movement of travellers and goods while making only one stop as opposed to the previous years.

Speaking during the media tour at the post on Thursday,KRA Regional Coordinator for Western region,Pamela Ahago cited the progress of the post and the need to build more surveillance structures.

Ahago stated that they’re working with the land ministry and security affairs to build more security structures at the border.

“We are negotiating with the President, Ministry of land to ensure the security at this border is safe, by having private structures that are very close to the border to ensure, all the surveillance is done,” she stated.

The new check points will be constructed at he at the border will do screening at the border to all the travelers and goods.

She  further added that the project will ensure more verification and scanning will be done to any good or anyone at the border for more safety.

Why Andiwo Mwai is my preferred candidate;Steve-Scott Ondiek

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The race to be the next Member of Parliament  for Bondo Constituency has since gathered steam ahead of the ODM nominations.

Of the four candidates who are contesting for the seat,the race seems to have narrowed down to a two horse race.

Business man Andiwo Mwai is seeking to dethrone the incumbent Gedion Ochanda who he will face off in the ODM party primaries.

However,2017 parliamentary aspirant Steve-Scott Ondiek who lost narrowly to Ochanda is yet in to give him another hard tussle as he is rallying behind Andiwo Mwai.

Scott who has been overseas for quite some time has declared his support for Andiwo Mwai.

Speaking during the Sakwa declaration in Nyang’oma,he cited that Mwai was the only suitable candidate to bring economic youth empowerment in the area. 

“As the people of Sakwa, we have officially endorsed Andiwo Mwai as our parliamentary candidate,” he said. 

The owner of Matangwe Clinic Centre noted that he will will use both his political influence and financial muscle to aid Andiwo clinch the constituencies top seat.

With the oncoming nominations,he also noted that they will ensure that Mr. Mwai emerges victorious through thick and thin.

“Andiwo is the peoples favourite and I am sure that come the nominations we will have the certificate at hand,” said Scott.

He further termed the incumbent as an opportunist who has been riding on the back of others while using their projects to seek votes .

“There is nothing substancial that Ochanda has done since he was elected as Bondo Mp, those who have eyes can see, this is the time for change to bring in fresh leadership which is Andiwo Mwai, ” he furthered.

With the Sakwa declaration the team is now tasked with convincing the Yimbo clan to make Andiwo the next legislator for Bondo constituency. 

The duo also urged residents to support James Orengo for the the Siaya gubernatorial seat and also Azimio la Umoja presidential aspirant Raila Odinga.

Bondo parliamentary seat takes a fresh twist as Sakwa clan endorses Andiwo Mwai

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Bondo parliamentary aspirant business man John Andiwo Mwai is on then move to dethrone the incubent Gedion Ochanda.

Mr.Mwai is out to give the incumbent a run for his money as he continues to transverse the constituency in the tough battle to lead Odinga’s back yard.

Speaking during a rally in Nyang’oma ,where the business mogul was endorsed by Sakwa clan elders, he cited that he does not fear the nominations whether it is through voting by delegates or the voters.

“I am a member of the ODM party and I don’t fear nominations, no one can steal my votes and if there is anyone to be given the ticket it should be me,” he said.

Mwai who contested for the seat as an independent in the 2017 polls lost to Ochanda who is seeking for a second term in office.

With the party primaries knocking, Mwai cited the need for fair nominations promising not to let go the certificate terming himself as the peoples favorite.

“I am the peoples favorite,I will win wether the nominations are fair or not,let us meet at the ballot,” said Mwai.

He further noted that when elected, he will ensure more roads are constructed in the area and improve the constituencies sanitation standards.

While seeking for votes, he also bugged support for Siaya gubernatorial aspirant James Orengo and ODM party leader Raila Odinga.

With endorsement,Mwai now seeks to gain support from the Yimbo clan to emerge victorious in the August polls.

Treasury on a move to cut M-Pesa transaction cost

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Treasury Cabinet Secretary Ukur Yatani is working on a proposal to cut M-pesa transfer fee on a move to lower Safaricom’s revenue rate.

Speaking during a senate presentation on Safaricom’s dominance, the CS noted that there was a need to make transaction costs cheaper considering the wide usage of mobile money platforms in Kenyan business.

Mr Yatani said the Treasury was aware of the concerns raised by both growing consumer and small business on M-Pesa transaction costs.

“Another concern with mobile money stems from the perception by both consumers and small businesses that digital technology leases are unfairly benefiting Safaricom Plc,” he said.

The move to review the charges will add to the challenge Safaricom is currently facing over its dominance, including a move to cut call rates and split M-Pesa as a separate company from the telecom service.

Recently, M-Pesa accounted for almost 99.9 per cent of the value of mobile money transactions which undermines the entrenchment of the platform in Kenya’s economy.

The Treasury noted that technology disaster affecting M-Pesa-dominated mobile transactions now poses a fiscal risk, making money transfer systems one of the other potential threats to the economy being closely watched by policy anger.