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Monday, 24 January 2011

The Anchor, January 2011(Updated with Pictures)


MAIN STORY
DRAMA to the end
Family feud, death and burial shocker

BY ANCHOR REPORTERS

I F he was not a mysterious character, then Mr. Abednego Makau’s departure is the mystery itself.
The mangled wreckage of
 Abed's(INSET)
car
The reclusive heir to the throne of T-Tot  was a workaholic in virtually all respects. He quickly built a massive business empire- much bigger that what his father could manage in decades. In less than a decade after the death of Mr Aron Makau, Abed, best known as Kikuyu or Kapendo erected a building worth Sh 80m and begun a business therein worth some Sh 30m. He si-mul-ta-neously erected a palatial home worth over Sh 10m and shortly af-ter-wards bought a building oppo-site  Kenyatta Stadium at Sh 18m.
Yet, Kikuyu looked so humble and passive, confirming the age old adage that calm waters run deep. That calmness packaged a ferocious char-ac-ter that was best cam-ou-flaged and only manifested to those he came face to face with.
This mystery was characteristic of the man when he pulled into a Naivasha Hotel on the evening of December 30 2011. He pulled into the hotel before 6pm and briefly sat alone pensively in his Prado.
He then went to the counter and Cheked in, conversing  briefly with another guest, who was launching there with his family that evening.
Kikuyu later went into the bar and or-dered two beers. He did not drink the beers en-tirely before he withdrew-probably back to his room. His car was still parked out-side the hotel when he checked out of the room identified as Senegal at 2am to embark on his fateful journey home.
Kikuyu is reported to have hit the rear of a bus before crashing. The bus drive stopped and is reported to have gone to the spot where Kikuyu had crashed and found him lifeless. The bus driver re-corded a statement and was released.
Police first treated the death as an acci-dent before a post-mortem de-manded by the family revealed that he had taken a bullet in his head from the right side of his head. This new de-vel-opment forced the police to recall the bus and detain it as a probe begun.
Police officers who recovered his car must have done a shoddy job at first for failing to discover he had a gun shot. Kikuyu’s own Gun was missing as well as his mo-bile phone. Kikuyu was a licensed gun holder from September last year after many years of applying for it in vain.
Sources say Machakos Police had turned down many applications for a gun from Kikuyu as he alleged that his life was in danger. They demanded to know the real reasons for the appli-cation since, if it was money. He had been handling it for a long time without threats.  He cited an in-ci-dent where thugs shot through T-Tot Hotel and another where he es-caped an ambush at his gate in his Muthini Estate Residence as jus-ti-fi-cation for his appli-cation.
A source that knows him well says he was set to get a gun at whatever cost. He still managed to overcome the Machakos Po-lice judgement. The source says that if the Firearms bureau did due diligence on the applicant, he did not deserve being licensed to own a gun due to his un-pre-dictable temperament, besides the judgement of the Machakos Police Di-vision.
As we went to press, Police had re-corded statements from 30 people and may not have made a significant headway. They visited  Naivasha and interviewed the ho-tel guest who may have been among the last Machakos  resident to see Kikuyu live.
Efforts to have Kikuyu buried at his Machakos Plot hit a snag a day  before the planned burial. (See story else-where)
The proprietor of Tea Tot Hotels, was found dead at the Haile Selassie Road roundabout in Nairobi on the morning of December 31.
According to Nairobi Area Traffic Comman-dant Patrick Lumumba, police were originally investigating death through an accident.
‘The holster was still tied to his hip, but the pistol was not there,’ Mr Lumumba said. Mr Makau was a prominent businessman and recently completed and opened a Sh50 million hotel that has changed the landscape of Machakos town.
Since the death of his father about seven years ago, Mr Makau and his other siblings have been embroiled in a bitter dispute touching on inheritance which has sharply divided the family.
(Read a court ruling over
the wrangle on Page 14)


Machakos Municipality on the spot
 as family searches for burial ground

SO why did his burial hit a snag? 

A quick background is necessary.
Word has it that bad blood exists among members of the family of the late Aaron Makau, a workaholic businessman who founded T.Tot Hotel in the 60s and died in 2002, leaving behind a legacy of investment.
At the time of his death, he was arguably among the biggest investors in Machakos town with key buildings and plots within the Machakos Central Business District.These properties where inherited by his children. The Anchor needs to stress that it is needless to get into some details of issues revolving this matter.
Be that as it may, it is crucial hust to indicate that as succession issues unfolded, a misunderstanding developed among family member that cascaded into court battles. Our research into the feuding resulted in a report at the Kenya Law Reports about the fight for the control of T.Tot hotel and The Anchor brings it to you verbatim elsewhere in this paper.
This misunderstanding is believed to have made it difficult for the family of Abed Nyamai Makau to settle for their ancestral home in Mbitini village on Iveti Hills as his final resting place.
The family chose his residence adjacent Garden Hotel, where a magnificent home stands and approached the Machakos Municipal Council for approval. Sources say a senior official of the municipality was send to the home and view the possibility of securing the approval and it appears that the council did not find fault with the matter. Apparently, the council communicated verbally that it had no objection.
The first notification for his death in the Daily Nation only indicated that burial would take place in Machakos. The family so chose until they had secured the approval of the intended burial site.Information available to The Anchor indicates that they were given a verbal approval to burry the deceased on the property identified at the council as Machakos Block II/406.
It is a leasehold property that he bought from another Machakos Businessman.According to the Physical Planning Act,  and Cap 265 of the Local Government Act, Local Authorities have the mandate of enforcing laws relating to a town’s  sites development.
This means that anyone planning to even dig a trench to fence a plot requires a written application, pay site inspection fees and other requisite charges before a written approval is done by the council.In the case of MKS Block II/406, everything was done verbally, even as the council knew that the laws do not allow the burial of a person in a leasehold property unless on very exceptional circumstances.
Even then, one needs to make a formal request and the council would have to make a resolution of the Full Council, forward it to the Minister for Local Government for ratification after a very consultative process. This procedure was not followed and the family was to bury the late Nyamai on his plot until a member of the civil society the council had ignored walked into the office of the Permanent Secretary for Local Government, with the grievance that the council had failed to live up to its key responsibilities.
The council at first denied knowledge of the mater when the State Counsel in the Ministry raised the matter. By this time another member of the civil society Mr. J.M.Masyuki had written another objection and placed it on the Town Clerk’s desk, also citing failure of the council to rise to its obligations
When the PS himself came into the matter, Council leaders were in a spin. A letter to the council ordered the municipality to advise the family that it was not possible to burry the deceased on the plot. The news hit the family and burial committee like a thunderbolt after appeals by Mayor Fidellis Kimuyu to Prof Mutahi through a proxy got a response that the body would be exhumed if they decide to defy the burial advice.
Besides, this abdication of duty, the implication of burying citizens within leasehold plots has grave ramifications to the economy. First, it leads to collapse of value of the property and others within the neighborhood. Banks refuse to accept a property as collateral in towns where one is buried as it is difficult, if not impossible to sell it off once a loan is defaulted.
Moreover, investors find the town unsuitable for investment as it shows that authorities can not be relied upon to enforce regulations. Why not bury the deceased beside his father’s grave?On January 13, the family Matriarch Mrs Winfred Mutumi summoned elders, pastors and Abed’s widow, Joyce to her home. Joyce did not eventually attend the meeting but, this notwithstanding, a delegation was constituted to visit the widow with two messages: that the matriarch was willing to forgive the family and was also willing to burry her son at the family home.
Word has it that these offers were not taken and they left the home a date of  January 22 had been set for the burial either at Kenya Israel or at Kathome- a site owned by Abed near Machakos Girls where his grandmother is buried.The widow was to communicate with family lawyer James Aaron Makau, who also chaired burial committee on the place of burial.
This drama has sent tongues wagging and sections of media speculating that bitter unprintable remarks Abed  is alleged to have told the mother may have occasioned this sorry state of events.
By the time of going to press, a gaping grave, meticulously done as Abed did to every building he erected when he lived, remained fatefully empty, hopefully believing that the authorities would allow burial at the plot.

      

Shaping up battle 
for Lower Eastern vote

By Anchor Reporters
Prime Minister Raila Odinga and
Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka
INSET Mrs Ngilu and Mr Mwau 

Prime-Minister Raila Odinga is making firm encroachment on the Kamba Territory in a bid to warm up to the over 1million votes in the next General elections.
Already, Raila has met some leaders, some of who defected from ODM-K at  his Bondo home.  Musila Makola and a retired NSIS official Jimmy Mumina were at the helm of the delegation.
At the meeting, Raila also acknowledged the defection of former Knut National Treasurer and Yatta branch ODM –K Chairman Peter Mutulu, his treasurer Shanie Mukonyo and civic leader Gregory Mwenze and Yatta PNU chairman Joseph Mutisya. Also in the team included Masinga’s  KANU chairman Gideon Mutua, Machakos town aspirant Simon Kitheka and Francis Ngunga of Muungano party. Those who have defected from Kangundo constituency to ODM are  Paul Muya, Nora Wanzau and Gerald Mwaka.
 According to Makola the PM promised to work hard with them to secure votes in the three counties currently perceived as the only stronghold of Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka. This was a test leading to preparation of party elections scheduled in February this year. What happens during these elections will certainly be a pointer as to whether Raila  has made inroads in Ukambani since the last elections.
For if the ODM elections successfully take place, it will be a statement that Mr Musyoka will have to fight tooth and nail for the votes in the three counties- away from the honeymoon of 2007, where residents voted overwhelmingly for his ODM-Kenya Party. Already, Kalonzo’s former right hand man- Mr Mutulu, former KNUT National Treasurer has come out boldly saying he will run for Governor of Machakos on an ODM ticket. Many other politicians are decamping to the party and nothing is being heard of the VP’s ODM-K or his possible vehicle for his bid for the Presidency in 2012.
At the Bondo meeting,, Mr Odinga made it clear that his strategy in Ukambani sees Mrs Charity Ngilu as the centrifugal force and that all ODM leaders would have to work under the shadow of Mrs Ngilu, who is advancing her political interests under the National Rainbow Coalition(NARC) party.
The wisdom in this strategy is that Ukambani has two distinct and undying political camps- one led by Kalonzo and the other led by Mrs Ngilu. Rather than attempt to create a third force, while one of the camps is willing to play ball, the PM sees it wise and strategic to work with Mrs Ngilu, even as he mops up support from politicians who are neither in the two camps- and they are many.
Pundits say this attempt by the PM is aimed at mobilizing grass root forces early enough, the outcome of the investigation on Mrs Nglu’s alleged corruption cases notwithstanding.
Raila’s move comes at a time when the VP’s support in Ukambani is at its lowest and has not even been buoyed by the tide Mrs Ngilu is facing at the National front- meaning that whatever happens to Mrs Ngilu in the graft probe in Nairobi may not affect the VP’s political fortunes in Ukambani.
Matters are worsened by the fact that public opinion in Ukambani is empathizing with Mrs Ngilu as they believe the region has best chances of realizing water under her leadership. That belief is manifested by the fact that many parts of Ukambani are experiencing better water presence- the best case being Machakos where water supply has resumed on daily basis. The same is the case in Kitui, Kibwezi, Makindu and Mwingi, with many other places awaiting the completion of many multi-million water projects initiated by Mrs Ngilu.
The Kalonzo camp has sat back to reel in laughter, sometimes under the tables, as the investigation unfolds, in the hope that she will be felled and achieve what Mr Musyoka failed to achieve with his request to President Mwai Kibaki to remove her from the water docket so as to clip her wings and resurgence in Ukambani politics.
Rather than plan to appear concerned with perennial water woes on the community and demand that more resources for water be channeled to Ukambani and even pretend to work with her for the heck of politics alone, Kalonzo has successfully locked out the possibility of even gaining millage  from Ngilu’s woes and may thus have to brave for a dramatic backlash in the event she is cleared of the  probe.


Who will be Senator and
Governor of Kitui County?
By Ibrahim Tayari
T he passage of new constitution merged political nemesis Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka and water minister Charity Ngilu. The two were operating with enough leg room after introduction of multi-party politics which saw the creation of Mwingi district with two constituencies carved from the larger Kitui district. This was aimed at taming the increasingly opposition wave in Kitui led by Wtare and Irrigation Minister Charity Ngilu by creating a strong KANU powerbase fronted by the now Vice-president Kalonzo Musyoka.
The two Mwingi constituencies voted for KANU until its demise in 2002 general election when alliances shifted to NARC after the VP felt short-changed by then president Moi by picking Uhuru Kenyatta as his heir.
Ngilu stuck with the opposition  and was first elected on a DP ticket in 1992 and got re-elected on SDP during 1997 general election where she was a presidential candidate.
 Her party by then threatened to scuttle KANU loyalty in the region by clinching nine out of seventeen parliamentary seats. Their rivalries have extended to national politics after Ngilu opted to support Raila Odingaagainst Kibaki, defying  the popular wave in the region which was for Kalonzo. However she retained her Kitui central seat and will evidently be the VP’s stumbling block in many respects. The new dispensation now pits the two political supremos in the same county, one seeking to be President of Kenya and the other seeking to be Governor of Kitui.
 It musk be stated that competition between Mwingi and Kitui is so rife that during the campaigns for passage of new draft the VP was in pains trying to convince the locals that he was ready to fight for creation of a Mwingi county to woo voters,  even when all knew that he lacked the means to do it. However, that promise remains outstanding and adds up to the many debts the VP is yet to repay to Ukambani.
The passage of the constitution means that Senior political leaders - Kalonzo, Ngilu, Defense Assistant Minister and Mwingi South MP David Musila, MP Kiema Kilonzo, former Ministers Nyiva Mwendwa and Francis Nyenze and George Ndoto and a clique of upcoming professionals are all hemmed in Kitui County and must look for a formula of sorting themselves politically with both the national and local perspective in mind.
 Over the Christmas season, Musila seemed ready to announce his ambitions for a county post during his annual party at his Migwani home although he later became reluctant after growing cold feet due to the fact it is not as easy. Musila must calculate carefully or loose everything due to his geographic proximity to Kalonzo and the fact that his relationship with Kalonzo has somewhat deteriorated considerably.
 That Kalonzo will seek the presidency makes its difficult for Kitui residents to want to consider another Mwingi person for a big seat. That can only happen if Kitui County residents feel that such candidate has his heart with them… and such a person if coming from Mwingi will have to distance himself from the VP to gain favour with the rest of Kitui people. Thus whatever the choice he makes, he will have first to see where the VP will be standing. The earlier he makes this decision, the better as forces on the ground do not seem ready to wait for slow thinkers
 By the fact that the VP will be going for the presidency, Musila will tend to eye the senate post, where he will while away as he eyes his second and possible final retirement from public life. The aging former provincial commissioner has raised his development profile since his election in 1992 and is credited with transforming the semi-arid constituency by improving infrastructure, digging of bore-holes and improving the welfare of secondary school. He is nick-named ‘MEKO’ meaning performer and his credentials have gone past his constituency. He is a leader of sound managerial skills according to his constituents. However his age might be a stumbling block for him for he is clearly a conservative member of the Old Guard, without any evidence of a reformer.
Political balancing will play a major role and if Musila goes for the senate, the governorship will automatically fovour a candidate from the Kitui district. The name of Water Minister Charity Ngilu has cropped up as Governor.
 She has a huge fanatical following in Kitui courtesy of her experience, hard ball political approach, development record over the years, self styled leadership capabilities and financial backing. She is also said and believed to be a defender of Kamba interests in national arena after serving well as the champion of opposition politics in the region.
Mutito MP Kiema Kilonzo an ODM-K rebel has not yet declared his interest for any post but he is touted  to  be only keen to defend his parliamentary seat which has come under threat  from Equaty Bank director Mutua Muluvi. If he decides to go for the Governor’s slot or senate of the county, pundicts say he will be authoring his destiny to oblivion early enough due to many political realities on the ground.
Kiema first made his stab in active politics in 1997 but lost to Muthusi Kitonga  of SDP. He had contested on KANU ticket during 2002 general election, he captured the seat on a Ford People ticket. It is during 2005 referendum when he shot to limelight being in a group that led the campaign to for the rejection of the draft constitution together with  Kalonzo which later led to formation of ODM party.
He acted as a strong defender of the VP in the run-up to 2007 election and got re- elected on an ODM-K ticket but their relationship soured soon after formation of coalition government in what was viewed as VP’s failure to lobby for him a ministerial appointment. He has tried to position himself as a third-force and kept off from the axis led by both Kalonzo and Ngilu.
 Factors show that he will find himself on the bad side of local politics if he does not support either of them considering they are both seasoned and experienced or risk being caught in the trap that befell former minister Mutua Katuku, Kivutha Kibwana, Joseph  Munyao and Assistant Minister Kalembe Ndile who charted their own direction in 2007 but lost miserably.
Although he enjoys youthful age, his performance at constituency level is questionable since many of projects in Mutito started after 2003 are labeled ongoing. Critics say he has badly managed CDF kitty and bursaries are awarded to those connected with the committee and perceived to be able. Kambas also consider him untrustworthy and out on a mission to spoil for the VP. During the just concluded referendum he positioned himself as the leader of NO  campaign  in the region.
 The YES  only managed a three percent gap against NO team much work was attributed to presence of mainstream churches in the region AIC and Catholics which was squarely opposed to the draft. During the campaigns he faced rough time after allegations that he had pocketed two hundred thousand donated by former president Moi meant for bread in kitui boys
 In Kiema’s constituency the voters humbled him by voting a five thousand margin of YES and this was a solid signal that the electorate in his constituency were clearly not listening to him and are set to move in different direction.
Observers believe that if Kiema will seek any of the county posts, he will be running away from a political humiliation at the constituency level since the voters seem done with him, a cool two years before the general election.
 Whoever takes the big posts will have to contend with the rising and neglected needs of the verse county. The county is rich in coal at Mui basin, presence of a National game reserve, Limestone deposits in Mutomo but this is hindered by poor road infrastructure. Except the  National highways the county has only 8 km of tarmacked road from Kitui town leading to Mutito and this has slowed the phase of development in the county.
Mwau searches for new lifeline amid scrutiny on drug trafficking alle-gations
Kilome Member of Parliament John Harun Mwau is needs a new political life-line  if he is to survive turbulence coming from investigations into drug trafficking in Kenya
This comes after his name was included In the list of prominent Kenyans allegedly involved in illegal drug trade. The first term MP who survived the Kalonzo wave in Ukambani getting himself elected under his party Pick will have to play hard politics and integrity whitewash to clean his name.
This is in spite of the fact that his constituents  are dissatisfied over his performance as their MP. His inclusion in the list of suspected drug lords is serving as double tragedy after doing very little at constituency level.
Mwau, who is toying with the idea of running for the senate in Makueni county finds himself between a rock and a hard place in calculating his political future. Since his election. many say he has not fulfilled promises he made to his constituents and he is rarely  seen on the ground leaving the CDF under management of his spanner boys who have in turn messed up with it. This has been complicated by Mwau’s own inaccessibility, making it difficult for him to ever know that his CDF is in a huge mess.
When he sought election, he made a raft of promises to the povery  ravaged constituency. Amongst the promises he made, only electricity provision has been actualized but critics say he favoured his stronghold of Kasikeu and Mumela divisions .
But he has failed to address the issue of water, poor road infrastructure occasioned by sand-harvesting and bursary where majority of the needy are locked out during allocation in favour of well-connected ones.
Residents complain the MP is elusive and cannot be reached when he tours the constituency in a helicopter . Besides, he hires goons broad-chested  goons from Nairobi slums who act as his security. Un-employed youths have however cautioned him against ferrying Nairobians and instead  want him to offer them jobs as he promised.
No single youth has been employed by him despite owning many lucrative business in the country where he could fix the un-employed  and the youth have declared war on him in the coming general election.
Whether he goes for a parliamentary or Senate seat come 2012, he will have to contend with the fact that he lacks strong grassroot network .
The electorate now want him to fulfil promises like the recent one where he was quoted saying that he will roof every grass thatched house in the constituency before next election but according to many that remains a myth far from reality since he has failed to honour simple and practical problems. It will be interesting to watch how voters react to his involvement in drugs business considering that many un-employed youth have been ruined by narcotics and it has become a world cry.

 EDITORIAL
Why Kenyans require an
open,explaining Government

F or years, Kenyans have hoped to benefit from the range of taxes they pay to the State, yet these hopes have been dashed.
One of the reasons for this situation is the fact that many citizens remain in the darkness about what to expect from the government.
The State has made it its business to draft budgets, approve and implement them, much to the exclusion of those it is supposed to benefit. This is done in sheer secrecy.
So secret are the deals such that citizens hardly know how much the government has planned to use in a locality for their benefit.
For instance, each year, the Government funds most line ministries in the districts for activities that officials plan to carry out allegedly for the benefit of the citizens, yet the citizens remain in the darkness.
This has resulted in wrong projects being carried out and millions of shillings being stolen and at times, being returned to the Treasury- thus causing suffering to citizens failing to get the service the funding was supposed to provide.
Worse still, there is no forum where citizens are told what programs line ministries must carry using funding available in a given year.
Information related to this is regarded as exclusive to the officials yet it is for the benefit of citizens. Officials, on their part have a grotesque justification for doing what they do. First, the lack of information to citizens provides a great highway to riches as money unknown to citizens is easily stolen.
Secondly, there is no written policy or law that is enforceable that obliges officials to provide information of this nature to citizens.
For  journalists, it is a nightmarish experience to extract information from government offices because of bureaucratic red tape, often insulated with statutes such as the Official Secrets Act and a host of other rules, whose impact is to ensure that the governance process is as closed as possible.
 Towards an Open Government
To end this administrative malaise which directly encroaches on the quality of life citizens live, a framework must speedily be created in Kenya where the Right to Know is henceforth seen as a Human Right. It is encouraging that this right has been captured in the new Constitution of Kenya. A law to that effect is expected within five years and Kenyans can hardly wait this long.
To achieve this, a regime of Freedom of Information must be put in place speedily in both law and policy and tradition so as to fling open  all closets where information gathered by use of public resources and is for public good is kept under lock and key. It is envisaged that such a step would lead to an open government where withheld information is not abused by abating graft but is used for public good.
Kenya MUST ensure that policies and laws on the right of access to information are legislated, implemented and enforced.
The right of access to information is an important human right, necessary for the enjoyment of other human rights. It is essential for transparent and accountable government.
Access to information makes possible the public participation in formulating social policies and in the decision making processes of governance.
The enjoyment of the right to information can only be effective on the basis of laws regulating this right in accordance with international standards.
Every individual’s right of access to government-held information MUST BE assured by Law. We all have the right to know how elected officials exercise power and how the taxpayers’ money is being spent.
Clearly, we must have an open, explaining government, devoid of secrecy statues.


OPINION

Lessons to be learned from the
election of the 'Sonko' of Nairobi

By Nzei Wambua 

Are we witnessing Generational change in this Country.  If any-thing, the election of Gedion Kioko Mbuvi as the M.P for Madadara must be taken as a lesson to po-litical strat-egists, bro-kers as well as party leaders’.
The story goes that Mbuvi has been working with the people, he seems to know the problems of the people of Makadara and is able to sample out the needs of the youth, that of the hawkers ( including women who sell veg-etables),  that of the Police who he has had to assist in building police posts and others.
When all has come home, the most interesting part of it is that Mbuvi has been working with ODM and wanted to vie for Makadara seat on an ODM ticket.  It is said that he approached the party not  in need of direct nomi-nation but for a fair nomi-nation process.  It is said that he went to the Party three times.  When he failed to have his way, he turned to Narc which is affiliated to ODM.  He did not succeed, then to Pick,then ODM-K, and finally to NARC-K who agreed to give him the cer-tifi-cate.  Does this not show that our nomi-nation process should be strengthened to avoid direct nomi-nations?.  If the ODM party knew Mbuvi well and any other in-ter-ested person like Dr Dan Shikanda, why did they not give them an opportunity to run in the preliminaries.  This also gives us a chance to review what we saw on TV as Mbuvi tried to tell other can-di-dates to prevail on their supporters to refrain from vio-lence.  We saw him extend a hand of peaceful co-existence and peaceful campaigns to Ndolo.
This brings us to the other side of the story, and that is, might it be that the culture of violence has its origin from our leaders?  Is it that tribalism and the cul-ture of vio-lence can go home with the older gen-eration?
 Why is the coincidence, that a per-son like the DJ of a Fm Station should obstruct the MP’s ve-hicle, why the coincidence?
One thing is clear, Mbuvi rep-re-sents the face of de-ter-mi-nation and con-fi-dence.  He did not give up when he was denied the ticket by ODM.  He looked for alternatives and that is a big lesson to us.
Another area of concern is about the tearing of posters by supporters of some candidates.  As you drive along Jogoo road many posters of other can-di-dates are torn leaving those of  Ndolo being more con-spicuous.  What is the gain for tearing these posters?  They are ex-pen-sive and why should normal person, who is not a candidate tear a poster?  This is a culture which should end as we enter into mod-ern so-ci-ety, which understands tol-erance.  It would be good to have all posters intact but the elec-torate would hold their weapon - the voters card.
Look at this, after the results were announced, Dick Wathika accepted the results and con-gratu-lated Gedion Mbuvi.  Ndolo was not at home with the  results and what followed were complaints about the method Mbuvi used to win the seat, which in-cluded that of carrying  people free with his vehicles etc.  Let us learn to accept defeat in elections when others win.  There is no per-son or group of per-sons who hold the monopoly of winning elections. 
When such people win, de-moc-racy has prevailed, but when they lose the election has been rigged. Mbuvi did not elect himself but was elected by the people of Makadara and its not good for one of the can-di-dates to feel that the seat was his and should not have been won by some-body else.  Winning or losing in elections, is not the end of the world.  There is always a tomorrow.
The IIEC also must have learnt a lot, They discovered that parties are not doing due diligence in the nomi-nation of candidates. They dis-cov-ered that a party can present a fugitive as a candidate even as the Constitution bars such fellows from holding po-sitions of lead-ership. Such are the lessons for the IIEC such that they are now demanding more powers, sharper claws and more teeth for them to be more effective.
The established politicians learnt a lot also, in that by using the big party bosses may not give much influence to the votes this time.
The political parties also learnt a lot, that they should have a clear cut nomination process and that ethnic favours may be a thing of the past.  To underrate any as-pirant may be disastrous.  Money may in-fluence a lot in elections. This statement was driven home by the reality that Mbuvi and Kabogo did use more money than the other can-di-dates – who had assistance and connivance from government either PNU or ODM.
 In Starehe, we may not comment alot because the outcome rep-re-sented the picture of a by-election where some voters may register in a particular area for a time and then get back to their normal electoral areas during a General elections.    In by-elections, people can come from far  and register in a particular area, vote and are paid, a very disturbing occurrence in-deed.
 The results of a General election will be different because the big party bosses will be busy cam-paigning for themselves and normally people  register in their areas.
Mbuvi  may have a great heart and good intentions.  He seems to want to help people and may not satisfy everybody. But such intentions need to be underwritten with an impeccable character, demeanour and good measure of integrity.
True, the advances of poverty are menacing. But the fact that he has started a foundation to help the have nots, good as it may be can never be used  as a shield by any-one so that soldiers of intehrity do not question his source(s) of money.
 He can even come up with a co-operative society where the hawkers, matatu crew, women veg-etable venders can deposit some money and get a big loan in return to develop their businesses.  Since he seems to know the people, he can know how to lend them easily because the Banks will require collaterals.  He can also have the youth and the people of Makadara coming up with a chain of supermarkets where they can be the customers and the owners. That can be good. But as long as Mbuvi lives a life that is less than transparent, questions will linger as to whether the young man he is can offer leadership that is any better that our very octogenarians in office.
It is also important to look at those people who are pointing fingers at him, none of them is clean.  In any case, Mbuvi should not be answering all questions which come his way.  Nobody should question him about why he was carrying people free because the other candidates had a better opportunity of (having been in parliament) owning large matatu networks
Hon Mbuvi should by now have known that he is swimming in waters full of sharks, so he should be mindful of what he says. 
Mr Nzei is an Educationist.  He vied for Makueni Parliamentary Seat in 2007 and presently is working with Community based Projects.nzeiwambua@yahoo.com


33 illegal colleges within
your county exposed

LOWER Eastern is leading with the highest number of illegally operating colleges. According to a list published by the Per-ma-nent Secretary for Higher Edu-cation Prof Crispus Kiamba, 33 out of 110 illegal colleges in Kenya are based in the counties of Machakos, Makueni and Kitui.
Machakos County takes the bulk of the ille-gal institutions, with 24 of them based within MachakosTown.The list however indicates that the re-gion has 18 out of the 386 fully registered Tech-nical, Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institutions in Kenya.
Professor Kiamba says the illegal TVET colleges will have to be closed down until they comply with the law.The publication is as a result of an audit done by the Ministry of Higher Edu-cation in an effort to rout bogus colleges pur-porting to provide trained workforce for Kenya’s labour market.
This means that hundreds of students in those institutions are wasting their time and money since the so called cer-tifi-cates they will receive from the college are worth nothing and will not be rec-og-nized by the gov-ernment.
The list identifies such colleges based on their addresses and possibly, their lo-cation, but it is possible that the list is longer since some colleges not reg-is-tered to be based in Machakos have opened branches in Macha-kos where they have found gullible and un-ques-tioning citizens who register in bogus colleges merely to earn what they can call a certificate.
Among the  registered 18 are the Macha-kos Technical Training Institute, obviously the leading institution in East-ern Province and currently awaiting up-grade possibly to Uni-ver-sity or Na-tional Poly-tech-nic status, Machakos Tech-nical Training Institute for the Blind, and two Private Colleges- Mumbuni En-gi-neering and Driving School and Femlu College.
The list says that only one private in-sti-tution is holding a provisional reg-is-tration, while 13 out of 368 colleges have expired pro-vi-sional certificates and have been iden-tified for imme-diate clo-sure. Standing out on this list is Cen-tury Park College.
The Anchor, in its undying spirit of pre-senting facts as they are to help our readers take the right decisions for their lives has isolated the lists as cat-ego-rized and brings them to you. Stay An-chored!.
NAME                                                                                    TOWN/DISTRICT
                                                                                               
Broadway Commercial College                                            Machakos
Catholic Technical Training Institue                                      Machakos
Century park College Konza Rd                                            Machakos
Dalphine  Training College                                                    Tala Town
East view Driving College                                                      Mwanzia Building ,Kitui
El Shadai Training  & Driving School                                    Machakos
Holy family Catholic Com-puter College                               Kabati town
Institute of Community Development                                    P.O BOX 924-90100 Machakos
Joma Technical College                                                        Kaewa Market
Kanaam Driving School                                                         Machakos town
Kaseve Institute of Arts                                                          Kaseve
Kathithyama Tailoring Dress-making & Knitting College      Machakos
Kenya Institute of Pro-fessional Counseling                         Mwanzia Building ,Kitui Town
Kenya Institute of pro-fessionals                                           Susu Building
Kephas Driving School                                                          Machakos
Kitui Ebenezer Auto Garage                                                  Kitui
Kitui Institute of Professionals                                               Jochan Building ,Kitui Town
Machakos County Training Institute                                      Machakos
Mbukoni Technical Training College                                      Mutitu Town
MED Computer College                                                        Tala town
Mshono Computer Training College                                      Adjacent Machakos KRA Office
Mutitu Technical College                                                       Machakos town
Mutituni Institute of En-gi-neering                                          Mutituni Town
Prime Computer College                                                       Mutitu Town
School of Hairdressing & Beauty                                          Athi river
Southern Technical Driving School                                       Kitui Town
Strafford College                                                                    Mwalimu Center , Machakos
Tala Technical Training College                                            Kawinzi Hse,Tala Town
The Grace Technical Training Center                                   Machakos
Tumaini Youth Polytechnic                                                    Kaewa Market
Villa Point School of Hair-dressing and Beauty                     Tala town
Wairimu Hair and Beauty College                                         Tala Town

LIST OF 386 FULLY REGISTERED TIVET INSTITUIONS AS AT 10/1/2011

S.NO             TYPE              REGISTRATION NO                    TOWN/DISTRICT
1.  Better Center    Private    MOEST/PC/433/2000                    Machakos
2. Copper belt college of Business Studies Private    MOEST/PC504/2000    Machakos
3  Eastern Computer and Commercial College  Private    MOEST/PC/777/2002   Machakos
4  Felmu College  Private    MOEST/PC/664/2001   Machakos
5  Holy Rosary College , Tala   Private    MOEST/PC/1006/2006 Machakos
6  Ithoka Technical College      Private    MOEST/PC/524/2000   Mwingi
7  Kangundo fashion and Design Institute  Private    MOEST/PC/538/2001   Kangundo
8  Kangundo Technical and Vocational Training College Private    MOEST/PC/516/2000   Machakos
9  Machakos Institute of Technology  Public      MOHEST/PC/1311/010          Machakos
10 Machakos Technical Training Institute for the Blind Public      MMOE/2377/1965         Machakos
11  Machakos Technical Training Institute Public      MRTTT/PC/219/1998  
12 Mercy Comm. College PrivateMRTTT/PC204/1998         Mwingi
13 Mumbuni Engineering and Driving School  Private    MOEST/PC/867/2004   Machakos
14 Mwingi Baptist Youth Polytechnic   Private    MOHEST/PC/604/2001          Mwingi
15 NYS Yatta School of Agriculture  Public      MOHEST/PC/1174/2009        Yatta
16 Ukamba Agricultural Institute Public      MOST/PC/1077/2007   Kitui
17 Vocational Training Center- Athi river Public      MOEST/PC/652/2001   Machakos
18Wote Technical Training Center    Public      MRTT/PC/301/1999      Makueni
LIST OF PROVISIONALLY REGISTERD TIVET INSTITUTIONS AS AT 10/1/2011
Machakos Medical & Tech Training College   Private    MOHEST/PC/1194/2009        Machakos
INSTITUTIONS WITH EXPIRED PROVISIONAL CERTIFICATES IDENTIFIED FOR IMMEDIATE CLOSURE
EASTERN PROVINCE
S.NO  NAME                                                                                   TOWN/DISTRICT
1         A.I.C Ngelani Technical Training Institute                             Machakos
2         Almar Training Center                                                          Machakos
3         Century -20 –Park College                                                   Machakos
4         Denis Motor Vehicle Training School (Matuu)                      Machakos
5         Eagletec College                                                                  Machakos
6         Edsal College                                                                       Nairobi
7         Einsight College                                                                   Machakos
8         Kangundo Engineering and Elecronics Training School     Machakos
9         Machakos Tsidkenu College                                                Machakos
10       Metropolitan Academy of Business Studies                        Mwingi
11       Systems  Applications programming and Training College (Wote)    Makueni
12       Toyota Tcechnical Training Institute (Wamunyu)                Machakos
13       Millennium Intercontinental College                                      Machakos 


Examining factors informing
the drying rivers in Machakos County

The greater Machakos region is reeling under massive environmental degradation perpetuated by sand harvesting cartels defiant of the mining regulations imposed by the National Environmental Management Authority [NEMA] in 2007 to curb the menace countrywide.
 The set of guidelines, meant to ensure the resource is exploited in a manageable and sustainable manner in addition to protecting the environment are flouted with impunity by the notorious cartels.
 This had led to wanton destruction of the river systems which ridiculed the government commitment on environmental conservation.
 An estimated 170,400 tonnes of sand are harvested annually from Ukambani region, according to Semi-arid Regions Environmental Services managing director Mr. Jeremiah Simba.
 But the official regretted that very little income from the trade is ploughed back to local community for development purpose. ‘’Local authorities reap huge cess from the trade but had done little to assist the community while the sand dealers do not contribute to the welfare of the residents as part of their social responsibility,’’ Mr. Simba regretted.  
 The demand for sand, according to project coordinator of another Non-Governmental organization, Poverty Eradication Network [PEN] for the lower eastern region Mr. Mathew Muendo is set to triple as a result of the boom in the construction industry.
‘’The demand for putting up new buildings in Nairobi city and other upcoming towns in the surrounding like Machakos, Mlolongo, Athi River and Chumvi had intensified which posed the threat of more environmental degradation in the region through vigorous extraction of sand for sale,’’ Mr. Muendo explained quoting a baseline survey carried out by the NGO in.2009.
 A survey in 6 Ukambani districts revealed years of disastrous plunder of the aquatic ecosystem which had worsened the scarcity of water in the region.
 The two weeks fact finding mission covered rivers Thwake, Miu Nditha, Wamaa and Maanza. Also affected are Kyuuni, Yuuma, Inanzaa, Itoma, Tilimuumbu, Kathaana, Kalala, Ndela, Kamunzu, Matunda, and Muyuya Ng’ang’a streams in Mwala, Machakos, Masinga, Yatta, Kangundo and Athi River districts.
 In Mwala where the survey started, massive degradation was evident at sections of rivers Thwake, Miu and Nditha which are the main sources of water in the district. Equally affected are the Kamunzu and Matunda streams in Mbiuni location.
 Residents said the perennial river Athi which underwent massive restocking during the Elnino rains was also under threat. ‘’They [sand dealers] are waiting for the flowing water to subside to start harvesting from the riverbed,’’ a resident of Kaloleni village along the river Mr. Jeremiah Mutunga says.
 The destruction at river Thwake is marked by over-scooping of sand from the riverbed and harvesting at the riverbanks at Kitula and Kwa Kaluu villages in Yyulya location which is contrary to the extraction guidelines issued by NEMA to control sand harvesting activities in Kenya .
 The NEMA rules also require the sand dealers to build sand dams and gabions at the designated sand harvesting sites for restocking purpose but our reporters sighted none at the two removal sites at river Thwake. The same applied to rivers Ndela and Myuuya Ng’ang’a in Yatta district which are also characterized by over-scooping from the riverbed and encroachment on the riverbanks as well.
 “The two rivers [Ndela and Muyuya Ng’ang’a] used to be permanent but had degenerated into seasonal springs owing to uncontrolled sand harvesting,’’ a resident Mr. Japheth Mulwa, says at the site and wondered why the government had allowed the mess to continue unabated.
 Similar interference is evident at the streams and rivers Yuuma, Inanzaa, Itoma and Tilimuumbu in Masinga district and Thwake, Kathaana and Kalala in Kangundo. Masinga DC Mr. Joshua Marete regretted that removal of sand from the riverbed interfered with the underground aquifers hence loss of safe water.
 57 year old Nzula Munyithya from Kitula village along river Thwake in Mwala lamented over worsened water shortage in the village which she blamed on total exhaustion of sand along the riverbed. ”As I result we are forced to walk quite a distance upstream to fetch water at Uuni, the neighboring village following destruction of the river wells which served us along this stretch,’’ the woman lamented cursing the sand harvesters. She was driving a herd of her livestock to drink water at Uuni where sand harvesting does not take place. Other areas affected by degradation include Manzuva, Kwelita, Lower Kyambusya , Ngoluni and Utithini in Mwala division.
 In Machakos, the most affected are rivers Manza and Wamaa which are seasonal. Degradation is more pronounced at Kasinga and Mung’ala villages while in the neighboring Kathiani constituency in Athi river district, the trend is the same at river Thwake which meanders through there as well and the Kyuuni stream.
 Speaking in his office, Athi River District Commissioner Mr. Loyford Kibaara suggested alternation strategy whereby some rivers and streams are closed for part of the year to allow replenishment of sand during the rainy seasons before harvesting was allowed again.
 Residents of Kitula in Mwala were unhappy with the collapse of a local community water project some years ago caused by over-exploitation of the river system by the sand dealers and censured the government for failing to intervene as the notorious cartels presided over environmental degradation.
 Tycoons behind the trade exploit the manual laborers by offering them very low wage of between Sh 50 and Sh 60 for loading of the 14 tonne lorry. “Loading of one lorry is done by six people who are paid between Sh. 50 to Sh 60 each but on a good day each can make as much as SH.1000 when the trucks are many,’’  a Masinga resident Mr. Joseph Kieti told reporeters in Masinga town.
 In Yatta, Mr. Dominic Kioo said the traders bought one tonne of sand at between Sh. 700 to Sh 1,200 at the site depending on the season. “The prices shoot up especially during the dry season when the resource become scarce in most parts,’’ he added noting that the big time traders normally make a kill by buying the commodity at about Sh 9,800 and reselling the same to building contactors in Nairobi and its environs at between Sh 15,000 to 18,000 per the 14 tonne lorry.
 Other environmental effects caused by the uncontrolled sand harvesting include damaging of the soil stability which accelerates soil erosion in harvesting sites through haulage of the heavy sand ferrying trucks, destruction of the underground aquifers and loss of surface water through over-scooping.
 There is also destruction of surface areas through storage of sand at open areas which clears the vegetation. This is common at stretches along the Nairobi-Mombasa highway especially at the Lukenya, Athi river and Mlolongo towns.
 There has also been public outcry over social ramifications’ including prostitution allegedly promoted by the sand dealers whom the residents accuse of influencing young girls and married women into unprotected sex through their daily wages which in turn had fuelled the spread of HIV/AIDS, sexually transmitted diseases, unwanted pregnancies and early marriages.
 The residents have also been up in arms against sand harvesting for encouraging drop out of students from school to seek employment as scoopers and truck loaders at the sand quarries in a bid to provide for their poor families. This is common during the drought period when most families become desperate owing to scarcity of food and other basics needs. Others pursue engagement daily after school, during weekend and public holidays which affect their academic performance.
 ‘’Some pupils end up deserting learning after getting used to the sand harvesting jobs while the academic progress of those in part time engagement is dwelt a severe blow for missing lessons frequently which impacts negatively on their future,’’ lamented a primary school teacher at Kasinga area, Machakos district which is adversely affected by the activity. The teacher, who sought anonymity, regretted that the trend frustrates the teachers and other stakeholders’ efforts in fostering academic performance in the affected institutions.
 The sand dealers are also revered by the residents for their arrogance, violence, use of vulgar and abusive language which parents complain impacts negatively to the discipline of young children and the noise pollution from the heavy sand ferrying trucks which pass near their homesteads and learning institutions disrupting concentration by students. In Vyulya location, for example, local residents complained of rising insecurity posed by intruders who had flocked the area in pursuant the manual jobs.
 Mwala DC Ms Florence Amoit blamed perpetuation of the menace on lack of enactment of concrete laws which could be applied on offenders.
 But reporters discovered that the sand dealers had continued to flout the requirement without intervention from the relevant authorities. The NEMA guidelines required the district environmental committees to oversee formation of Technical Sand Harvesting Committees [TSHCs] and the Riparian Resource Management Associations [RRMAs] to advise and make recommendations on sand harvesting activities in the affected districts and oversee sustainable management of sand harvesting activities in their areas of operation respectively.
 The Technical committees are specifically to be responsible for designation, documentation and demarcation of the sand harvesting sites from time to time in consultation with RRMAs and also working out Environmental Management Plans [EMP] for such areas to guide in their rehabilitation and ensuring that no harvesting was allowed at none designated spots.
 They were also mandated to bar sand harvesting in any area before environmental impact assessment and environmental audit pursuant to the Environmental Management Coordination Act [EMCA] no. 8 of 1999 is done and ensuring sand traders constructed gabions and sand dams at the approved harvesting sites for restocking of sand during the rainy seasons.
 That only people above 18 years are hired as sand scoopers and truck loaders and who should be residing within the local community and that the approved sand dealers paid the workers a negotiated and agreed wage in addition to the laborers being organized into recognized groups with clear operational structures for their self regulation and monitoring by respective Riparian Resource Management Associations.
 That the traders supported local community projects in consultation with the riparian resource management associations and that local authorities invested part of the proceeds from the sand cess in environmental conservation activities and community projects as well subject to the local government act and to guard against over-scooping on the riverbed to ensure adequate reserve of sand for water retention.
 They are also supposed to discourage harvesting on the riverbanks, ensuring loading of sand is done at the harvesting sites only, that no harvesting carried out  within 100 meters of either side of any physical infrastructure including bridges, roads, railway lines, dykes among others, that haulage lorries use designated access roads only and that the riparian resource management associations, county councils and the licensed dealers rehabilitated exploited sites in compliance with the EMCA provisions.
 The riparian associations on their part are charged with ensuring that before sand harvesting activities are commenced, environmental impact assessment is undertaken in accordance with the provisions of EMCA and that annual environmental audits are conducted for closed and active sites as well as sustainable management of sand harvesting along riverbeds.
 They also oversee collection of revenue from sand dealers along riverbeds, allocation and transmission of at least 10 per cent of the revenue collected to the technical sand harvesting committee to facilitate their operations, allocation of part of the revenue collected from sand dealers for community projects, ensuring rehabilitation of the sand harvested sites and other environmental damage associated with harvesting and transportation of sand within its area of operation. 
 Unfortunately, the two important committees had remained inactive explaining the haphazard manner in which the sand dealers exploited the resource culminating in persistent conflicts between them and local residents who stage frequent demonstrations and barricading of roads leading to the harvesting sites demanding total ban on the activity. But the government has not been keen on banning sand harvesting in Ukambani considering its economic potential and contribution to the construction industry especially in Nairobi city.
 Thus, the best option for the aggrieved residents is to push for urgent activation of the technical sand harvesting committees and riparian resource management associations to start controlling exploitation of the resource for their economic and social benefits.
Katelembo sales 40 acres ille-gally
KATELEMBO Athiani Muvuti Cooperative Society has lost close to 50 acres worth Sh 12 million in the past two months, The Anchor has established.
The land was sold by officials of the society and used a small fraction of the proceeds to pay members their travel refunds during their just concluded Annual General Meeting. An acre was sold for Sh 400,000, with buyers getting about 10 acre parcels. What is worse is that the land was sold without the consent of members. This information was kept secret from the members and they did not exactly know that the paltry rebates they were taking were proceeds of corruption activities at the society.
This is notwithstanding the fact that the sale was done with full knowledge and connivance of officials from the Ministry of Co-operative Development whose major role today is midwifing the death of co-operative societies in Machakos.
Currently dying societies include the Masaku Teachers Sacco Society, Konza Ranching Society, Muka Mukuu Coffee Society, Mavoloni and Kyanzavi Farmers Society.
Sources within Katelembo say members were paid over Sh 1m in fares rebate and that the rest of the money had become a source of attraction to officials of the society and those from the Office of the Commissioner of Co-operatives.
Co-operative Officials have been trooping to Katelembo for all sorts of meetings during  which they earn hefty allowances. They have been engaging with the society even after a recommendation was made in 2006 that the society be liquidated for outliving its usefulness.
Accounts availed to our reporter show that the society has been a quiet cash cow for officials including past Machakos District Commissioners and co-operatives officials as its corrupt officials embark on sale of land for the survival of the society.
The society is reeling under the pressure of squatters whose number has risen from 200 in 2000 to over 1,000 to date. Many of its members are demanding Title Deeds to their land because the management has not sorted out massive double allocations, illegal sale of  land and poor keeping of records to serve corruption purposes.
This situation has provided room for confusion at the society that government officials exploit to arm-twist society officials to keep on selling land illegally and get funds that are used to buy inaction from the officials. In one specific instance, the Commissioner of Co-operatives was scheduled to hold a meeting with the society to read to them the riot act, but he failed to appear without apology or explanation thereafter.
Sources say the society has failed to implement a myriad of recommendations from the Commissioner and no action is taken, allowing them more time to plunder public resources. “Vocal Committee members have not been useful to the society since they keep on criticizing the society but do nothing to whistle blow or change the state of affairs, said a member, who refused to be named and added that the government ought to ensure that the society was liquidated as per the 2006 recommendation.
In another development, businessman Mr Wilson Muema has refuted allegations that he has grabbed over 70 acres of land at Katelembo Co-operative Society.
The allegations were made during an Annual General Meeting of the society on November 11 last year by Society Secretary Daniel Kasinga.
In a statement to The Anchor, Mr Muema said he owns over 100 acres of land within the society that he had bought from original members over a long time and displayed records showing a long list of  the land parcels.”I have never been an official of the society and neither do I have the intention of ever becoming a committee member of Katelembo so as to gain advantage of proximity to grab public property”, Mr Muema charged and added that he keeps Membership Cards of members who sold the parcels of land so that he can fight off malicious allegations of some officials who do not want the truth to be known.


Kaputiei: Giving a 
smile to slum dwellers


By Emily Chapman
I
n the grassy plain lands southeast of Nairobi, the town of Kisaju seems no different from its neighboring – albeit more developed – towns.  Yet off of Mombasa Road, and after a substantial drive over dirt roads past Maasai cows, an island of red roofs appears as suddenly as an illusion on a sea of rippling grasses. 
This 300-acre compound, remote from both roads and towns and yet home to over one thousand people, is known as Kaputiei.  Its residents have a rather unique background: the majority of them relocated from slums in Nairobi, including Mathare, Soweto, MukuLu kwa Njenga, Kibera, and Rongai.  Most significantly, groups displaced by the 2007 post-election violence also inhabit Kaputiei’s many houses.
Kaputiei’s extensive establishment indicates the project’s solid support system.  Original financing came from Acumen Fund, an international venture capital firm that has invested in countless businesses in developing countries throughout the world.
In Kenya, the Fund has supported Jamii Bora, a small bank with branches throughout central and western Kenya.  Jamii Bora, in turn, has invested in the housing project at Kaputiei, supporting fledgling companies such as Jamii Bora Maccau Limited (for construction) and Jamii Bora Kaputiei Limited (for utilities).
Finally, the housing settlement is also managed through leadership on the ground.  Managing Trustee Ingrid Munro, based in Nairobi, has made significant contributions to develop Kaputiei’s resources.  Head Site Engineer Mr. Joseph Muli Ndeke has overseen all technicalities in the construction of houses and the implementation of infrastructure.
And Mr. Joseph Ole Kepiro is the Community Elder and Chairman, providing a critical foundation for the successful functioning of the settlement.  
This writer and Mr. Jude Ndambuki, native of Machakos and director of the Help Kenya Project,  made a site visit to Kaputiei and met with Mr. Ndeke and Mr. Kepiro, who narrated to us of the settlement’s history.
From late 2000 until early 2001, the community attempted to purchase the 30 acres, in the hopes of establishing a permanent settlement for Nairobi’s slum-dwellers. 
In 2002, a crucial component of infrastructure development – the drilling of the settlement’s bore hole – was completed. 
In 2003, they began to produce the cement blocks and red clay roof tiles that would serve as construction materials.  That same year, however, the project was met with a complicated legal roadblock. 
Maasai clansmen, native to the land on which Kaputiei was to be founded, claimed ownership and refused to yield.  Nevertheless, project developers went to court to secure legal rights over the plot, hoping to garner government support for the project.  After winning the case – as well as a subsequent appeal – the Kaputiei project could finally proceed uninhibited.  By then, it was already 2007.  In that year, construction finally began on the housing settlement. 
The managers of the settlement wanted to ensure that the process of construction would be beneficial for the future members of the community.  Rather than import materials from external companies and locations, the construction crew supplies them all on site.  As production began in 2003, Kaputiei still possesses a surplus of 3 million cement blocks and 1.5 million tiles despite the extensive construction of houses to date.  These materials will be used in the near future for the further building of houses over Kaputiei’s land holdings.  A hefty store of local raw materials – ballast and sand for cement – will also be stored in expanded industrial areas.
Another self-sustaining component of construction is the employment of residents as manual laborers.  Three hundred workers make the cement blocks and roof tiles, and put up the wood beams necessary to support the houses.  Such jobs are valuable sources of income for Kaputiei’s inhabitants, many of whom were previously unemployed or living in dire poverty.  Others run businesses within the settlement, including hotels and temporary shops.  Others hold private jobs in Kitengela and Nairobi, where they commute each day.
Such income generation is important for residents in order to continue living in Kaputiei.  In addition to investing in the construction and utility companies necessary for building the settlement, Jamii Bora also supports the residents and their families.  After registering with the bank, individuals take out loans to purchase a house.  At a standard 18 percent interest rate, they must pay off the loan gradually in installments.  Jobs therefore insure that residents will become financially independent.
While construction is therefore currently the primary occupation of Kaputiei’s residents, the transition in primary management from Maccau Limited to Kaputiei Limited – the utilities company – may create new jobs in infrastructure development activities.  At present, the community has already made significant progress in establishing various necessary services.
A small medical clinic attends to the resident’s minor health concerns.  In early 2009, Kaputiei established a primary and secondary school through a generous contribution by Ms. Munro.  There are currently 200 students at the primary level, and 50 students at the secondary level.  In addition to creating a large compound for both schools, Kaputiei has also constructed eight living units for teachers.  
Local engineers led by Mr. Ndeke have also transformed the surrounding wetlands into a wastewater treatment area.  In addition to maintaining public hygiene, this facility will also soon recycle water, to be used in gardens and for cleaning purposes.
As Mr. Ndeke emphasized, water is a precious resource for many towns, including Kaputiei, and the community must do everything possible to ensure none would be wasted.  Finally, in the near future, utilities managers hope to install electricity for all of Kaputiei’s houses.  Again, Kaputiei Limited will oversee such developments.
Kaputiei settlement, although a young community compared to surrounding towns, has nevertheless witnessed many significant successes.  Although too numerous to list here comprehensively, they have much to be proud of: the allocation of prime land for development, sound financial and managerial leadership, a sustainable system of construction and employment, and local infrastructure. 
Yet in this writer’s opinion, the most impressive achievement of Kaputiei settlement is one that is not readily apparent.  Mr. Kepiro, the community leader, says Kaputiei’s residents represent all 42 tribes of Kenya.  Although originally divided amongst a diverse array of Nairobi’s slums, the residents have nevertheless united to live together peacefully in this settlement.
Seeing the noble and productive outcome of the Kaputiei project,  replication of similar projects throughout the country is certainly an expectation.  In particular, discussions have already begun for the resettlement of Machakos’ slum dwellers into stable and affordable housing.
 Working with Jamii Bora’s branch in the town, plans have been set in motion for the first allocation of land.  Surely such a settlement will create a viable community for the less fortunate in Machakos.
Together, the people of Kaputiei have constructed homes, are educating their children, and formed their own businesses.  They have raised and set the standard for all communities throughout Kenya.  Kaputiei is a shining example of the potential for all Kenyans – regardless of tribal affiliation or socioeconomic status– to live together.  Indeed, more than simply coexisting, these inhabitants have worked together to build their homes and endow their community with invaluable resources. 


Local Authorities face cash
crunch as slash on LATF looms

By Martin Masai

LOCAL Authorities face a fierce financial crunch arising from slashing of the Local Authority Transfer Fund(LATF)
This looming crisis is pushing councils to swoop on banks to borrow upharzardly to cushion themselves from the effects of the LATF cuts.
This development comes at the expiry of a 10-year moratorium by the Government to Kenya’s 175 councils to clear their debts by June last year or miss out on LATF funds.
Bebt resolution to the State, partners, and businessmen was set as part of the conditionality for access to LATF and the government had to stagger its initial deadline of 2005 when it became evident that the councils were heavily laden with debt to beat the deadline.
The debt resolution period was pushed to 2010 but still scores of local authorities are crippled with debts and it appears that the government may not extend the deadline, forcing the councils to scamper into the banks to secure their livelihood.
This comes as the future of Local Authorities remains unclear, with some facing dissolution or amalgamation due to the fact that they are unviable. The situation has not been helped by the ambiguity the new constitution of Kenya bears for Local Authorities. At present, no one knows exactly the place that is occupied by councils in the new constitutional order and Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Local Government Musalia Mudavadi has put up a task force to create a basis for councils in the emerging dispensation.
Majority of these councils are under siege and have resorted to either mortgaging or disposing off their assets to repay debts and secure their LATF allocations, which provide lifelines for most of them. 
Councils use LATF for development and recurrent expenditure and over three quarters of then can not exist without these annual allocations usually released in two tranches.
The LATF core objective included improved service delivery, financial management, accountability and debt resolution. However, regulations that all debts be eliminated by June last year have been flouted. About 25 local authorities are yet to clear outstanding debts.
This is despite the fact that over Kshs 50 billion has been disbursed through LATF since inception in 1999.
Over the years, roads, education, health, water and sanitation have accounted for 66 percent of the projects implemented by local authorities through LATF. However, the disbursed funds have been diluted through the large number of projects which in some cases are too small to realize any desirable effects.
The report says there is considerable evidence from recent studies and monitoring visits that the level of physical completion of the projects in many councils is low and monitoring remains a major issue.
The impact notwithstanding, most council’s are currently awaiting ministerial approval to forge ahead with their resolutions to dispose of property to pay debts or mortgage public property to borrow from commercial banks.
Financial analysts however warn that the trend spells doom to decentralization as envisaged in the new constitution, because highly indebted councils may not yield the desired outcome since inefficiency was likely to set in and debt levels could grow to unsustainable levels.
The debt  for Local Authorities currently stand at a whooping Sh 37.9 billion up from Kshs13.6 billion during the 2007/2008 financial year.
According to the latest annual report on LATF and review of local authority financial performance, the four largest local governments namely Nairobi City Council, Mombasa Municipal Council, Kisumu Municipal Council and Nakuru Municipal Council account for a significant proportion of the outstanding debt.

KACC quiz Mbooni
CDF chairman

THE Mbooni CDF chairman Nzeki Mutulili has recorded a statement with the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission over alle-gations graft at the fund.
KACC officials swooped on Mutulili at the Kikima offices of CDF and went through  raft of issues. They include the illegal payments of two Personal Assistants of Mr Mutula Kilonzo- one C Ndeke and Duncan Kyanda.
Ndeke is on CDF payroll, drawing Sh 20,000 monthly while Mrs Kyanda gets Sh 12,500 monthly from CDF. Ndeke is designated as CDF Assistant Manager, a post that is not existent within the CDF Act. Ndeke is alleged to have told the investigators that he pays the pair on instructions of the Min-is-ter for Constitutional Affairs.
Mutula has been reported to have re-corded a statement, along with Mbooni West Dis-trict Development Officer Anne Mulea, and Mr Musee, the Mbooni Fund Manager.
Investigators also questioned Mr Mutulili, who is also a councillor in the Makueni County Council on the purchase of the CDF Grader and Land-rover. They also sought to know how the Sh 2m set aside  for emergency projects was used. The team alleges they used the cash to plant trees, yet there is no single tree that could be identified, let alone a forest.
The investigations come over one year later since The Anchor first published sto-ries of theft of cash at the kitty. Mr Kilonzo took up the issue only recently, evidence that he has been  far removed from the oprations of the fund since he removed former Chairman Peter Mwanthi at the in-sti-gation of Mr Mutulili, former CDF Man-ager, George Malinga and committee member Jackson Ngovi.
The two agencies visited certain CDF funded projects and interviewed the projects management committee offi-cials and took away some documents.
Mutulili confirmed that KACC in-ves-ti-gators recorded a statement from him in Kikima and carted away some documents.
Civic leaders from Mbooni Constituency are pressing on with calls for prosecution of anyone found liable. The civic leaders vowed not to relent on their bid to remove Mr Mutulili from the chairmanship of Mbooni CDF saying he was simply incapable of managing the fund.
Thy councilors made a fresh charge that even after Mbooni was allocated cash for the 2009-20010 Financial Year, 80 per-cent of the cash had not been allocated to projects that residents had prioritized for implementation.
A long list of officials, including Ms Mulea, former CDF Account Manager George Malinga are targeted for investigations. Residents say the officials have left a lot to be desired in use of the funds and had developed a thick skin, coated with piercing arrogance.
Mutula had written to the CDF National Management Board calling on them to in-ves-ti-gate the Kalawa Girls secondary school where close to ksh.8m has been sunk yet there is very little on the ground.”I have personally visited the project and the complaints from the local stakeholders are legitimate from what I saw on the ground’’, read his letter to the Boards CEO re-questing the probe.

Why judges refused
to eject Abed from T-Tot

 This ruling is extracted from Kenya Law Reports

WINFRED MUTUMI WAMBUA & ANOTHER v ABEDNEGO NYAMAI ARON MAKAU [2007]
eKLRREPUBLIC OF KENYA

Court of Appeal at NairobiCivil Appli 290 of 2006

1. WINFRED MUTUMI WAMBUA2. PATRICK MASAI MAKAU  …………………….……… APPLICANTSANDABEDNEGO NYAMAI ARON MAKAU …….……..….RESPONDENT(Application for interlocutory injunction pending an intended appeal from the ruling and order of the High Court of Kenya Nairobi (Kubo, J.) dated 27th September, 2006 in H.C.C.C. NO. 1395 OF 2004)********************

RULING OF THE COURT    We have before us an appli-cation brought by way of Notice of Motion pursuant to rule 5(2)(b) of the Court of Appeal Rules in which the applicants, Winfred Mutumi Wambua and Patrick Masai Makau are seeking an order that ”an interlocutory injunction order do issue to restrain the respondent herein his agents and/or servants from erecting, alienating, managing or otherwise howsoever interfering with the operations and man-agement of T-Tot Hotel, Machakos pending the hearing and de-ter-mi-nation of the intended appeal herein.  The appli-cation is brought on the following grounds:-”
1.  The applicants who have an undoubted right of appeal desire to appeal to this Honourable Court against the ruling delivered on 27th September, 2006 by the superior court.
2.  The in-tended appeal will raise substantial and arguable points of law with very high chances of success in that:-
(a)    The ruling of the superior court was delivered prematurely pending the closure of the applicants submissions in respect of the chamber summons dated 22nd December, 2004.
(b)    The decision by the superior court to rule on the above application without hearing the applicant’s submissions in full is tan-ta-mount to a denial of the right to be heard by an impartial tribunal.
(c)    The decision by the superior court to rule on the application prematurely is a mani-fes-tation of bias on the part of the superior court against the appli-cants herein.
(d)    The decision by the superior court to rule on the application pre-ma-turely without hearing the closing submissions of the applicants is tan-ta-mount to condemning the applicants without a full and fair hearing which is contrary to principles of natural justice.
3.   The respondent as a joint administrator has breached his fiduciary duty to the estate and beneficiaries of late ARON WAMBUA MAKAU by:-
(a)    Claiming own-ership of the T-Tot Hotel, Machakos which is the main income generating asset of the said estate:
(b)     Refusing to allow the applicants herein and other beneficiaries to participate in the op-erations of management of the T-Tot Hotel, Machakos since 8thJanuary, 2004:
(c)     Failing to avail the banking slips/statements with respect to the operations of the hotel to the beneficiaries of the estate:
(d)    Failing to bank all of the daily receipts and proceeds of sales of the hotel which is by far the busiest hotel of its class within Machakos town:
(e)     Failing to account to the applicants and the beneficiaries all the daily collections received from the T-Tot Hotel between January 2004 upto date:
(f)     Diverting daily sales receipts from the hotel to his own personal use:
4.   The respondent has also perpetrated a fraud on the said estate and the beneficiaries thereof by:-
(a)  Claiming ownership of the hotel since year 2001 when the respondent knew that that was untrue since the late ARON WAMBUA MAKAU never mentioned this to any family member:
(b)  Claiming own-ership of all stock, tools of trade, goodwill, movable and immovable property within the hotel to the exclusion of the appellants and all beneficiaries of the estate:
(c)  Failing to render a true and just account of the proceeds and receipts of the hotel with effect from 8th January, 2004 upto date:
(d)  Failing to bank the daily collections from the hotel in the designated account:-
(e)  Diverting daily receipts from the Hotel op-erations for his own personal reasons:
5.   The estate aforesaid has suffered and will continue to suffer irreparable loss and damage unless the defendant is restrained by an order of this Honourable court from siphoning out proceeds of sale at the hotel which are of unquantifiable value with impunity and in fragrant (sic) breach of his fiduciary duties to the estate and the beneficiaries thereof.” The application before us has its roots in High Court Civil Suit No. 1395 of 2004 filed in Nairobi.  The dispute relates to the estate of Aron Wambua Makau.  In the said civil suit, the applicants herein as the plaintiffs sued the respondent (as the defendant) seeking judgment against the said defendant as follows:-”
(a)     Special damages.
(b)      A perpetual injunction order do issue to restrain the defendant, his agents and or servants from entering, alienating, managing or otherwise howsoever interfering with the operations and the management of T-Tot Hotel, Machakos Barclays Bank of Kenya Limited.  Machakos Branch account No. 1012729 and any other property of the estate of late ARON WAMBUA MAKAU.
(c)     A mandatory injunction do issue directing the defendant to return, restitute and re-transfer all assets of the estate of the late ARON WAMBUA MAKAU illegally transferred to himself his agents and or servants.
(d)     An account of all proceeds and receipts of T-Tot Hotel.  Machakos with effect from 8th January, 2004 – 28th February, 2004 upto date of the judgment.
(e)     Costs
(f)     Any other order this Honourable court may deem fit.”As is usual with such litigation, on the same day that the plaint was filed (22nd December, 2004), the appli-cants filed a Chamber Summons appli-cation stated to have been brought under Order XXXIX rule 1 and 2 of the Civil Procedure Rules and applied vide prayer (b) of the said application for the following sub-stantive order:-”(b)  That an in-ter-locutory injunction order do issue to restrain the defendant, his agents and or servants howsoever from entering, alienating, managing or otherwise howsoever interfering with the operations and management of T-Tot Hotel, Macha-kos, the Barclays Bank of Kenya Limited, Machakos Branch Account No. 1012729 and any other property of the estate of late ARON WAMBUA MAKAU pending hearing and determination of this suit.”    It was that application that came up for hearing before the superior court (Kubo J) for determination.  It would appear that towards the end of the hearing of that chamber summons, the respondent filed a notice of motion seeking leave to re-open his sub-missions which he had closed.  That notice of motion was vehemently opposed by the applicants.  The learned Judge of the superior court decided to hear both the remaining submissions on the chamber summons and on the notice of motion.  Having done so, the learned judge delivered a ruling in which he concluded thus:-”I have given anxious consideration to the affidavit evidence on record, both in support of the application and in opposition thereto.  My overall assessment of the matter at this in-ter-locutory stage is that the two sets of affidavit evidence on record tend to balance out each other and that the issues raised thereby cannot in my respectful view be properly and au-thori-ta-tively de-ter-mined without the benefit of having the deponents appear in court at least to be cross-examined.  I am not persuaded that this is a fit case in which the interlocutory injunction sought should issue and the application therefor is hereby dismissed.The parties should proceed to take a date at the Registry for hearing and determination of the main suit.”Being dissatisfied by the foregoing the applicants, through their counsel, filed a notice of appeal and pursuant to that notice of appeal filed this notice of motion under rule 5(2)(b) of this Court’s Rules for an injunction.When the matter came up for hearing before us on 21st March, 2007, Mr. Kyalo, for the applicants, submitted that the hotel in question was still being managed by the respondent and that the application in the superior court was not fully heard.  It was Mr. Kyalo’s contention that since the ruling of the superior court was given prematurely then the applicants have an arguable appeal as they were denied the right to be heard.  On the nugatory aspect of the intended appeal Mr. Kyalo submitted that the applicants are not in a position to tell how much money was being realized from the hotel.Mrs. Mwangangi, the learned counsel for the respondent, opposed the application, mainly on the ground that the suit was still pending in the superior court.  Mrs. Mwangangi further submitted that if the order sought was to be granted it would gravely inconvenience the respondent and that the damage to be suffered by the appli-cants can be very easily assessed.This being an application under rule 5(2)(b) of this Court’s Rules, it is upon the applicants to satisfy us not only that the intended appeal is arguable, and is not frivolous, but also that the same intended appeal if successful will be rendered nugatory if stay orders are not granted at this stage.  This is a settled law and if any authority is required, it is readily available in Ruben & 9 Others  v.  Nderito & An-other [1989] KLR 459 where this Court said:-”In dealing with rule 5(2)(b) applicants, (sic) this Court exercises original jurisdiction and this has been so stated in long line of cases decided by this Court.  Once an applicant has properly come before the Court, the Court has jurisdiction to grant an in-junction or make an order for a stay on such terms as the Court may think just.  We have to apply our minds denovo (anew) on the propriety or otherwise of granting the relief sought.  And as we have always made clear, this exercise does not constitute an appeal from the trial judge’s discretion to ours.  In such an application, the applicant must show that the intended appeal is not frivolous, or put the other way round, he must satisfy the court that he has an arguable appeal.  Secondly, it must be shown that the appeal, if successful, would be rendered nugatory:  See STANLEY MUNGA GITHUNGURI  VS.  JIMBA CREDIT COR-PO-RATION LTD.  Civil Application NAI. 161 of 1988.”    And in its recent decision in BOB MORGAN SYSTEMS LTD & AN-OTHER  V.  JONES (2004) 1 KLR 194 at p. 196 this Court stated:-”The powers of the Court under rule 5(2)(b) aforesaid are specific.  The Court will grant a stay or an injunction, as the case may be if satisfied, firstly, that the appli-cant has demonstrated that his appeal or intended appeal is arguable; and secondly, that unless a stay or injunction is granted his appeal or intended appeal if successful, will be rendered nugatory.”    The application before us is rather interesting.  We have now been told from the bar that the property on which T.Tot Hotel stands is indeed the respondent’s property but the business being operated thereon is what is in dispute.  The superior court had been asked to issue an injunction against the respondent as already stated else-where in this ruling.  That is the application that the applicants claim was prematurely terminated.  But it is to be observed that the learned Judge being alive to the nature of the dispute before him directed the parties to proceed to the Registry and take a hearing date for the determination of the main suit.  It would appear that the learned judge had in mind the guiding principles in granting or refusing applications for injunctions as enunciated in GIELLA  V.  CASSMAN BROWN & CO. LTD. [1973] E.A. 358 where it was stated, among other things, that when the Court is in doubt, it will decide an application on the balance of convenience.    We have anxiously considered the application and we are of the firm view that granting the injunctive orders sought would create more prob-lems to what is on the ground.  Since the dispute relates to a hotel business should the applicants eventually succeed in their intended appeal, it would not be difficult to assess the average income of the hotel for whatever period that the respondent would have operated the business.  We shudder to think of what chaos would ensue if we were to grant the orders sought.    For the foregoing reasons, we must decline to grant the injunction sought.  The application is accordingly dismissed.  Costs of the application shall be in the intended appeal.
   Dated and delivered at Nairobi this 30th day of March, 2007.P.K. TUNOI……………….....JUDGE OF APPEAL E.O. O’KUBASU…………………..JUDGE OF APPEAL E.M. GITHINJI……………………JUDGE OF APPEAL    I certify that this is a true copy of the original.DEPUTY REGISTRAR
Kabaa: A big school
that has become
a heap of shame,
needing quick help
Kabaa boys’ high School is one of the oldest institutions in Kenya . 
It was started by the Holy Ghost mission-aries’ congregation in 1924, according to a brief on its genesis and history posted in the school’s website.
 It was borne out establishment of a trading centre at Kabaa area in Mbiuni lo-cation of Mwala district. It was the brain child of a Dutch missionary father Michael Witte.
In 1924, Fr. Witte of the Holy Ghost con-gre-gation took over the mission the white preachers were spear-heading at Kabaa and es-tab-lished Kabaa primary which years later evolved to be the present day Kabaa High School.
In addition to spearheading God’s work, the Dutch’s eyes were also trained on pro-moting education amongst the local community with special emphasis on the boys initially.
He wanted to have the boys im-parted with skills in various fields including carpentry, tailoring and shoe craft among others so that they could exploit their energy into their own benefit and that of the other members of the community.
He was also interested in having the youth tipped on better farming practices. To achieve this, ex-peri-men-tal plots were ini-tiated at the school for practical learning by the students who were coached on planting of cabbages, tomatoes and on-ions among other horticultural crops.
The school administration offered market by purchasing the foodstuff produced by the students with the intention of en-abling them to generate income as part of the missionary’s enticement policy for more locals to enroll for learning.
However, the community did not buy the idea much and to counter the in-difference Fr Witte started throwing parties inviting the old men where he offered them food-stuff and other goodies with the aim of encouraging them to send their chil-dren to the school.
With time, his efforts started bearing fruit and enrollment started rising which later saw the institution become cos-mo-poli-tan admitting children from other tribes in-cluding the Kikuyus and Luos among others.
Impressed by Fr. Witte’s efforts to foster education amongst the locals and uplift the only school within the region, the co-lo-nial government chipped in and ren-dered immense material and moral support to fast truck literacy amongst the villagers.
This saw the school converted into a boarding primary school in 1938 and an intermediate soon after and relocated this section of the School to Mang’u in Central Province in 1939. Thereafter it became a seminary and later upgraded to Riuki Teachers’ Training College and thereafter renamed St. John ’s Kilimambogo TTC in the present Thika East district.
The remaining section became an In-ter-me-diate School until 1954 when it became a Secondary School under Fr. Mark, also of the Holy Ghost con-gre-gation. Form 1 and 2 classes were started during the transition period between 1954 and 1960 after which the government granted it license to have Form 1 to 4 classes as well. This saw all the intermediate stu-dents sent to Kalia Kundu.
Among prominent personalities who stud-ied at the school included the slain former planning minister and trade unionist Tom Mboya, as well as Mr. George Muhoho, Peter Nyakiamo and Bob Wood who were to become Cabinet Ministers in later years. Others were the first African priest Fr. Paul Njoroge who was ordained in Rome in 1939 and the retired Arch Bishop Ndingi Mwana Nzeki who seconded Fr. Njoroge for the priesthood ordination in Italy .
His eminence the late Cardinal Maurice Otunga and the late Rt. Reverend Bishop Urbanus Kioko also studied at the school while the current crop of leaders serving in the public and private sectors include, the Director of Information and Public Communications Mr Ezekiel Mutua among others.
 Kabaa High, whose history is syn-ony-mous with the white missionaries, became a National School in 1997 following en-dorsement by retired President Daniel Arap Moi. That made it the only in-sti-tution in Eastern Province to enjoy the national status. Moi’s gesture 13 years ago el-evated the school to the ranking of others like Alliance , Starehe, Mang’u, Lenana, Nairobi school, Maseno and Mary Hill [Thika].
But a visit to the school depicts a collapsing institution characterized by years of ne-glect, mismanagement and past epi-sodes of students’ indiscipline. Cer-tainly, it is a misnomer to think of it as a national entity considering the di-lapi-dated and old buildings put up during the colonial era some of which still serve as the students’ classrooms, dormitories, dining hall and administration block for the teaching fraternity. Being a national school, its performance in the Kenya Certificate of Secondary Examination has also been a let down over the years as per the records seen  by this writer.
Some of the structures ought to be con-demned and pulled down and in place new ones build to restore the dignity and credibility of the institution.  The current PTA chairman Mr. Benard Kavoo blamed the rot on poor leadership and mis-man-agement by former principals. He also blamed the local leaders for failing to push for infrastructural uplift and equipping of the school after Moi up-graded the school.
‘’Some have been wondering what went wrong with Kabaa, but who else was to engineer its development apart from the local leaders, members of the board of governors, parents teachers association and the alumni fraternity,’’ the PTA chairman posed during an interview re-calling the institution has been in ex-istence for over 86.
Mr. Kavoo said local politicians failed to take advantage of the Moi’s fundraising activities to mobilize resource to re-invent the school. ‘’All local leaders neglected the facility culminating in its decline,’’ Mr. Kavoo regretted.
However, the new school Principal Mr. Elijah Munyao says he had begun an im-provement policy to rehabilitate the di-lapi-dated structures and foster aca-demic performance and discipline amongst the students through partnership with the school management committees, teachers, education officials and local leaders.
‘’The first step in restoring  the institution  was the major fundraising meeting held September 18 this year where over Sh 4.9 million was netted,’’ Mr. Munyao told  reporters at the school. The harambee was presided over by the Vice President Hon. Stephen Kalonzo Musyoka and the former Managing Director of Kenya Airports Authority Mr. George Muhoho who is an alumnus of the school. Other contributors included area MP Mr. Daniel Muoki and his Kangundo counterpart Johnson Muthama. A bout Sh 15 million is required for rehabilitation of the entity, according to Mr. Munyao and Mr. Kavoo the PTA chairman.
Speaking before he presented his personal donation of Sh 200,000, Mr. Musyoka deplored stagnation of the institution and pledged to champion resource mobilization for its uplifting. ‘’Its not Kabaa high school only which needs re-invention but other  leading and  pioneer secondary schools in Ukambani like Kitui and Machakos boys too,’’ the VP said.
After fading into oblivion for many years,Kabaa high school only bounced back to limelight recently when it scooped position one during this year’s national secondary schools’ drama festival awards with the recitation ‘’Post Matialyo’’ which highlighted the disagreements in the coa-lition government on the new con-sti-tution and whether the prominent Kenyans indicted over the post election violence should be tried locally or at the International Criminal Court at the Hague. The students were among those who qualified to entertain president Kibaki at state house, Nairobi .
The students themselves had contributed to the school’s woes through violent riots through which they engaged in more plunder of the physical and learning facilities with the recent one being early this year when they razed down the administration block. A few disgruntled of them have also posted offensive graffiti posted on walls of some of the classrooms, dormitories and other buildings exhibiting the  indiscipline problem at the school.
However, Mr. Munyao, expressed determination to address the matter through dialogue and consultative approach with the students, parents, B.O.G members. ‘’However, am not ruling out reasonable punishment for disobedient students fond of breaking school rules and regulations,’’ he warned.
He decried understaffing at the institution. “At the moment, the school has only 24 TSC employed teachers handling a population of over 800 students,’” the principal lamented and pleaded with the ministry of education to urgently post an additional 25 more to bridge the gap which he said would be part of the solution to to jumpstarting the institution. He said the shortfall contributed to some teachers’ getting overworked.  ‘’The request for more instructors had been forwarded to the ministry of education and am hoping the matter will be addressed,’’ the head teacher concluded.
 Other able leaders from the district who can be called upon to assist in rebuilding the high status institution include Judge Philip Waki, Public Service Permanent Secretary Mr. Titus Ndambuki, ex- director of intelligence Mr. William Kivuvani
 Others are lawyer Kioko Kilukumi, former  minister Mutua Katuku, former director postal corporation of Kenya Mr. luusa, former chairman of the disbanded Electoral Commission of Kenya Mr. Samuel Kivuitu and colonel Mbithi among others.

Machakos KNUT braces
for branch elections

KNUT leadership  is rushing to com-ply with a Ministry of Labour cir-cu-lar directing all trade unions to con-duct their elections which must be supervised by a labour officer by March 30 2011.
As branches stage and plan their elections, the Machakos branch is scheming from the shadows.
Teachers are planning on the succession of Machakos Branch Sec-re-tary Albanas Mutisya, who re-cently was appointed as Acting Na-tional Treasurer of the union.
No matter who is elected, the task ahead of the new officials is well cut out for them.The teachers have complained about their Sacco which has been mis-managed beyond repair and teachers are blocked from withdrawing hence they are forced to remain as passive mem-bers.
They are grieving about the edu-cation scheme which is supposed to lend teachers loans for their children and their own education. They are de-ducted Sh 550/-monthly and none can access a small loan of Sh 30,000 or even less. This is the scheme believed to have swindled teachers close to Sh 800 million.
Members of the scheme were pre-viously drawn from the larger Macha-kos (Machakos County) and to date no teacher from the county has ever been refunded his/her shares or given a loan.
The Machakos Teachers Plaza is another thorny issue to the current KNUT leadership. They either colluded with the directors of the company to loot all the proceeds as teachers complain on lack of dividends. One wonders why a house being rented can fail to make profit. The plaza houses the sacco and the sacco pays rent worth Sh 280,000 per month. It is ri-dicu-lous how such monies fail to reach the owners.
The Machakos teacher has also in-vested in Kibwezi. They have built an ultra modern mortuary and it has been operational for the last two (2) years. The mortuary has two hearse mini-buses. Sur-prisingly the mortuary made a loss according to figures available and mem-bers have no idea where their in-vestment is located.
It remains to be seen what happens to the die-hard opposition led by Mr. S. P. Muthengi after his long time comrade in arms Nicholas Musyoka in August last year.
It remains to be seen who will step forward from the Mutisya camp to face Mr Muthengi and his team as they seek to address the plight of teachers in Macha-kos County
Mr. S. P. has the capacity to launch a well oiled campaign that can easily trounce the incumbents and take the lead-ership of the branch. Teachers should stand to be counted and clearly show their stand in true colours and defend their in-vestments. Stay Anchored!martinnmasai@yahoo.com
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