Posts Tagged ‘kenya’

Majok Guandong Reacts to Kenyan Government’s Protest Letter

Posted: August 22, 2012 by PaanLuel Wël Media Ltd. in Junub Sudan
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22 August 2012—(Nairobi) — South Sudan has responded to Kenyan government’s protest letter, expressing concerns over killing of its citizens in the world’s newest state.

In the letter sent last week, Kenya warned that the killings could lead to revenge attacks in the country.

Addressing a press conference in Nairobi on Wednesday, South Sudan ambassador to Kenya, Majok Guandong referred to the killings as isolated cases.

He said the government is looking into the matter.

[Majok Guandong]: “We have seen in the press for the last few days, weeks, the question of Kenyans that have died in South Sudan. Indeed it is sad to lose lives. But this are isolated cases. These are cases that are committed by individuals and the government of the Republic of South Sudan has already taken some measures. All the culprits that committed such crimes are now under law. The law will take its cause.”

According to a statement presented in Parliament by Kenya’s Foreign minister Sam Ongeri, 24 Kenyans have been killed in South Sudan since 2008.

The recent uproar was sparked off by the death of a Kenyan pharmacist, Joseph Matu who died after he was tortured while under police custody after he resisted arrest on allegations of selling counterfeit drugs.

The media quoted Kenya’ assistant minister of Foreign Affairs, Richard Onyonka as saying that Kenya hosts hundreds of South Sudanese in the country and they are concerned that the killings in South Sudan could see the same reciprocated in Kenya.

22 August 2012—(Nairobi) — A South Sudanese diplomat has denied media reports that South Sudan had written a letter to the AU and UN saying that the contentious Ilemi Triangle belongs to it.

The two countries claim ownership of the mineral-rich area.

On Tuesday, Kenya’s NTV quoted   assistant Foreign Affairs minister, Richard Onyonka as saying that Kenya was planning to hold talks with South Sudan, and that the triangle would remain Kenyan territory, as it is depicted on Kenyan maps.

In response to the claim, South Sudan’s Ambassador to Kenya, Majok Guandong denied having written any letter to the United Nations and the African Union.

[Majok Guandong]: “The media is trying to magnify issues, trying to bring about some difficulties between the two counties. There is no such claim. We have not claimed this. Both sides know the position of the Ilemi Triangle. When we demarcated our borders with other states, we did not demarcate our borders with Kenya and Ethiopia. And we knew it because they are our brothers. I don’t think there will be any problem at all on this issue.”

When asked where the Ilemi Triangle is exactly located, Guandong response was,

[Majok Guandong]: “You know the answer yourself, why do you ask for something that you already know.”

Named after Anyuak chief Ilemi Akwon, the Ilemi Triangle is an area of disputed land at the South Sudan – Kenya border.

Forget those you see flossing at social scenes or in music videos, these are the Kenyans living a life on the fabulous lane. DAVID ODONGO reveals some of Kenya’s young self-made tycoons.

They claim to have come a long way. They all hail from humble backgrounds and claim to be involved in legitimate businesses. These relatively unknown but wealthy Kenyans under 40 are going places. Whoever said that life begins at 40 might have not considered about these daredevils who a living large under 40 and own a fortune. We look at entrepreneurs who have made it against all odds.

In showbiz circles, the story of Homeboyz Entertainment is well documented. The company owned by the Rabar brothers is a now a conglomerate which rakes in good cash from events, radios, animations et al. Then there are the likes of DJ Stylez-led Code Red, Blackstar Entertainment and Kevin Ombajo’s Trublaq, which are making a kill.

Individual musicians like Nameless and Jaguar are also laughing all the way to the bank.

Away from entertainment there are young men and women doing well. Lawyers like Don Kipkorir are living large. Well, are these Kenyans the richest under 40?

Brian Gacara

Age: 27 years

Title: Managing Partner at Property Reality and Cape Gardens, a real estate firm.

Background: At 23 years, was the regional director for Tetra Pak, West Africa. Ventured in timber business, before eventually branching into real estate. Currently building a 120 units estate along Mombasa Road valued at Sh800 million. Also building luxury apartments in Kiambu and Nakuru. Gacara has also spread his wings to Rwanda where he is building a hotel. He is also involved in commodity importation. His other businesses include packaging and selling locally produced rice as well as large-scale farming.

First business venture: Selling timber.

Advice to the youth: As a young person you bubble with energy and ideas and it is the best time to get into business.

Holiday destinations: Any place in Kenya does it for me.

Residence: A penthouse in Keleleshwa.

Ride: A Mercedes Kompressor

Marital status: Single and not searching. I am too busy. It will be unfair to have a girlfriend whom I never get time to spend with. But definitely, I plan to get married and raise a family. However, I must be able to provide for them.

Most expensive habit: Treating friends and clients. I once spent 1,000 dollars (Sh82,000) a night.

Net worth: Below Sh600 million.

Contacts: My contacts are at

Kevin Muringa

Age: 40

Title: Group Chief Executive Officer of several companies with interests in construction, transport, real estate, import and export of cereals, large scale farming in Sudan and Angola. Dealing with Petroleum Products.

Background: As a high school pupil he started buying cows and selling them to Kenya Meat Commission. He made his first million at 20 years. He bought his first car at 21 and it was a Mercedes S Class. At 23 years he bought his first house in South B.

First business venture: Selling cows.

Advice to youth: Nothing comes easy. Dreams can only be true if you wake up and work on them. I am a staunch Catholic and prayers work miracles. I thank God for all I have. And as Steve Jobs said, why should I be the richest man in the cemetery? I give back to the society as well.

Holiday destinations: Two holidays per year to Bahamas, Dubai, Turkey or Mombasa. This Easter he plans to travel to Israel with his family.

Residences: Several homes in Kenya but currently moving to a Sh270 million house with expansive gardens in Westlands area.

Ride: Owns a cargo Boeing 767 and a 10,000 tonnes ocean liner. His collection of cars includes BMW 3 Series, BMW X5, Range Rover Sports, two Ford Off Road, a H2 Hummer and convertible Mustang.

Marital status: Married.

Most expensive habit: When young, I used to hire choppers every weekend to fly me out of Nairobi with a few friends. I am now too old for that. I would rather spend the money on charity.

Net worth: My war chest to campaign for Nairobi Governor is Sh2 billion, so you can guess my net worth.

Hussein Mohammed

Age: 34 years

Title: CEO

Company: Humora Holdings with interest in real estate, green energy, construction, stocks and securities and hospitality.

Background: I come from a humble background, grew up in the slums. I know what hard life is.

First business venture: Designing and selling uniforms while still in high school. There after, I got employed. At 25, I was the national head of sales for Safaricom. I resigned a year later to focus on my business and I have no regrets.

Advice to the youth: Believe in yourself. Never give up. I have failed so many times than I have succeeded, but the successes have been astounding! It’s never too late or too early to start a business.

Holiday destinations: Two holidays a year. We love Cape Town, Thailand, or the United States.

Residence: Own house, a four-bedroom home in Westlands.

Ride: Prado TX and Mercedes E-Class

Marital Status: I am married with two lovely kids.

Most expensive habit: CSR, as a company, we have spent more than Sh50 million on Xtreme Sports, which is the charity venture for my businesses.

Net worth: Below Sh600 million.

Stephen Chorio

Age: 27 years

Title: Managing Director

Company: Lace Group, which has interest in luxury beauty products, chain of salons, Real estate, supply of electricity poles in Uganda and South Sudan and Car hire.

Background: Marketing degree for Methodist University. Worked at Barclays for five years before venturing into business.

First business venture: Hair salon along Ngong Road.

Advice to youth: You can have all the money in the world but no peace of mind, so do what you enjoy.

Holiday destinations: Dubai. I love desert safaris. Locally, Mombasa does it for me.

Residence: Sh12 million house in Riara.

Ride: Toyota Prado TX and 2010 Range Rover Sports

Marital status: Married with one daughter.

Most expensive habit: Clothes, hosting parties, and membership to private and exclusive golf and leisure clubs.

Mwanga Steve

Age: 36 years

Title: Managing Director at Huddersfield Group, with interests in Aviation, Agriculture, Transport, Farm machinery and equipment

Background: Business Administration degree from a US university. Started business in early 20s.

First business venture: Farming

Advice to youth: Since the youth constitute 70 per cent of the population we have the power to change Kenya. Work hard. Holiday destinations: Turkey, where I usually shop

How an alleged gun drama between Deputy Chief Justice of Kenya, Nancy Baraza, and a female security guard, Rebecca Kerubo, is a classic case study of the proverbial wisdom of “Pride comes before the fall”.

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By PaanLuel Wël, Washington DC, USA.

I was born in South Sudan, raised in Kenya, and currently schooling in the US. Naturally, anything of interest happening in these three countries does arouse my curiosity and pique my imagination. One such typical incident occurred about a week ago in Nairobi, Kenya, as Lady Nancy Baraza, the newly appointed Deputy Chief Justice (DCJ) of Kenya, was fetching some drug from the Village Market shopping mall — in the upmarket Gigiri area in Nairobi.

But as fate would have it, that decision by DCJ Nancy Baraza to procure some drug from that particular store on that particular day at that particular time has become the first sensational landmark events of the year 2012 in Kenya. The “patient” seeking the succor of the medication at the mall ended up in an ugly drama in which she is alleged to have publicly drawn a gun, ready to “finish” the female security guard who had asked her to undergo security check—frisking, just like everybody else entering the mall. The security measures were duly instituted in the wake of terrorism challenge pose by Somali Al-shabaab militants who have recently carried out bombing activities in Kenya.

The reported altercation between Nancy Baraza—the Deputy Chief Justice of Kenya, and Rebecca Kerubo—the female security guard at the mall, has Kenyans glued unto their TV sets every evening. Writing for the, Alex Kiprotich and Kenfrey Kiberenge, in an article entitled Kerubo: My Encpounter with Baraza”report thus:

The saga surrounding an alleged gun drama between Deputy Chief Justice (DCJ) Nancy Baraza and a security guard, Rebecca Kerubo, is shaping up to be a duel of the biblical David versus Goliath.
Justice Baraza has been put in the dock by Ms Kerubo in an incident that has captured the imagination of the nation.
Already, calls for the resignation of Baraza are getting louder by the day, ahead of a crucial emergency meeting convened tomorrow by Chief Justice Dr Willy Mutunga to discuss the matter.
For Kerubo, December 31 is a day she will now never forget.
It all started like a normal day with no notable events but what happened later that day would snowball into one of the most intriguing stories so far this year.
Kerubo left her Sh4,000-a-month, two-roomed house in the peri-urban Gachie after bidding goodbye to her three children and unemployed husband, Morara Ogweche.
In an interview with The Standard On Sunday, under cover of darkness for fear of being monitored, Kerubo said she arrived at work at 8am and took her position at the security desk outside the Nakumatt supermarket at the Village Market shopping mall — in the upmarket Gigiri area in Nairobi. She assumed the day would go as planned – extend up to 1am because of the many people coming for New Year’s shopping – and later join her family before merry-making at dawn.
During the interview heavily punctuated by phrases of mnyonge hana haki (the weak have no rights) and sobs, she says trouble started at around 6pm when “an ordinary shopper” came and insisted on passing without being frisked.
“In such instances, you have your supervisor scolding you for not doing your work. So I stood my grounds,” recalled Kerubo.
At this moment, she claims the shopper pinched her nose telling her “you need to “know people.”
For a moment, Kerubo was shaken but says she did not put up a fight as she did not know who the shopper was. “After she pinched my nose at the security desk, she proceeded to the pharmacy and beckoned me,” she recalled with tears flowing down her cheeks.
Learn to respect people
Kerubo says by then, she assumed the DCJ had calmed down but on reaching where she was, she told her to learn to respect people.
“I told her respect is two way and left the chemist for the security desk where I continued screening customers,” she said.
But this seems to have rubbed Baraza the wrong way. Kerubo alleges on her way out, the DCJ came to her desk and ordered her security detail to shoot her.
“I did not know she had a bodyguard and only realised when she told a man following her closely to shoot me,” she said.
By then, Kerubo said she did not take it seriously and went on with screening clients only to see the lady reappear pointing a pistol at her.
“I knelt down begging her to spare my life. I could not hear what she was saying but as soon as she lowered the gun, I fled to the security office up stairs where I found one of the senior security officers,” she said.
After reporting the incident to her supervisor, Kerubo, whose father was shot dead by unknown assailants as he guarded a Karen home in 2000, requested to be allowed time off as she could not continue with her work.
Recollecting the events of the day, Ogweche said on the evening of December 31, Kerubo returned home earlier than expected.
“Unlike the normal days, she came and did not even greet me and I knew there was a problem as she began to cry,” he said.
He said the following day, after disclosing her tribulations, she refused to go to work but convinced her for the sake of the family.
Since then, the events ensuing events have been intriguing. Kerubo has been shuttling from one Gigiri police station office to another recording statements.
She and her family have also been lured into a reconciliatory meeting with Baraza, which was set for Thursday at their home.
Ogweche says he received a call from a person speaking in Kisii dialect telling him to convene his relatives and wait for Baraza, who was to apologise on Thursday at 9am.
“We waited up to the evening and a woman claiming to be Baraza’s relative appeared,” said Ogweche.
As it seems, the frantic efforts to reconcile the two women – already far apart in the social standing – has only raised temperatures and widened the rift further.
The emissary allegedly sent by the DCJ failed to convince the family after they insisted Baraza herself meets them to apologise.
He added the woman, who did not even provide her name, rang someone whom she said was Baraza and told her not to proceed with the meeting because journalists were in the vicinity.
He said the woman brought them two loaves of bread, three packets of milk, two kilos of sugar, two kilos of rice, three packets of maize flour and four litres of soda.
Kerubo is a casual labourer earning Sh2,400 per week while Baraza enjoys a security of tenure and takes home monthly emoluments of over Sh1 million, all paid by taxpayers.
On the other hand, Kerubo rents a Sh4,000 two-roomed house where she shares with her family of five.
“We just moved from a Sh1,800-a-month one-roomed iron sheet shanty because our family is now big,” said Ogweche.
She said after the incident, she is no longer sure of the future of her job because of fear.
“My husband is a mason and when there is no construction work we all depend on my meagre earnings,” she said.
Ogweche, 38, said he has not known Kerubo to be combative or argumentative in their relationship spanning 17 years – 12 of them as a married couple.
“Everyone needs to be respected in his or her work and it is unfortunate that some people look down upon others. It is even worse when it comes from the custodian of our justice system,” he said.
The family says they are willing to forgive Baraza unconditionally if she offers a genuine apology.
“I am willing to forgive her if she apologises. But if she cannot, she told me we meet in court which is still okay for me,” said Kerubo.

Besides being an archetypal instance of a pride coming before the fall, this alleged gun drama happenstance also touches on the question of (1) the rule of law, especially when it comes to top government officials, (2) the empowerment of women in Africa, and (3) the relationship between the haves and the haves-not, in as far as the former should expect to be treated by the latter in situation in which their roles are reversed.

First and foremost, Lady Nancy Baraza was appointed last year to be the deputy chief justice of Kenya as well as the vice president of the supreme court of Kenya. Her appointment stemmed from two main factors: her reformist credentials that had convinced majority of Kenyans that she would strictly adhere to the rule of law and uphold the constitution plus her being a female to fulfill the constitutional requirement that a third of public appointment must be filled by women. Her selection by the Judicial Services Commission, appointment by President Kibaki and PM Odinga and confirmation by the National Assembly made her the most top ranking woman in Kenya.

But if Baraza’s appointment was to safeguard the constitution, instill the rule of law and to showcase the empowerment of women in a patriarchical society, then her alleged public bearing have fallen short of the mark. Her refusal to have her frisked, her pinching of the security guard’s nose and her drawing of the gun, threating the life of the security guard place there purposely to protect people like her from danger, all smack in the face of the rule of law. As the guardian of the justice system in Kenya, she has set bad example to the nation.

Moreover, she has let down her womenfolk who have long maintain that a society manage by women would be a law-abiding and peaceful one. The sight of a female deputy chief justice of the nation, drawing a gun on unarmed and innocent security guard, is a godsend opportunity for male chauvinists who have been arguing that women are too arrogant to be bestowed with power and trusted with weighty matters touching the nation. In a society deep in ancient myth of women riding on the back of men when they were given leadership position in antiquity, Baraza’s conducts would only confirm the pre-conceived fear of the male chauvinists.

This is principally too bad considering that the root cause of the drama is not necessarily the fact that the security guard ask her to undergo security check, rather, Baraza was incensed by the fact that the security guard failed to recognize her as the Deputy Chief Justice of Kenya to the extent that she subjected her to frisking like a commoner. The security guard sin is her apparent failure to “know people.”

And of course, there is the other side of the haves and the haves-not. While the female security guard is reported to be earning Ksh 2,400 per week, DCJ Baraza earn upto Ksh one million per month. The female security guard live in a two-bed room house with other five members of the family, a rent of Ksh 4,000 per month, while DCJ Baraza live in a mansion, probably all by herself. The stark differences couldn’t be higher. For the Baraza, the idea of submitting to such “wretched” clouded her thinking to pull out a gun, forgetting the consequences of her action.

But as the call for her to resign, paving way to an investigation of her conduct, becoming louder and clearer, her chicken have come home to roost pending clearance by the investigation. Whatever the verdict would be, the milk has been spilt and nothing will ever remain the same. Though the incident has traumatize the security guard, given the fact that she lost her father to unknown assassin, there is a hope that the “unfortunate” incident would be a blessing in disguise for the rule of law and constitutionalism in Kenya if handle well.

You can reach PaanLuel Wël at, Facebook Page, Twitter account OR at his blog:

Southern Sudanese waiving their regional flag in Juba, South Sudan.

Photo/AFP/FILE Southern Sudanese waiving their regional flag in Juba, South Sudan.The new regime in Egypt has gone on a charm offensive much like its predecessor in an effort to have the colonial-era treaty on River Nile stand.

Posted  Saturday, July 23  2011 at  22:43

The new regime in Egypt has gone on a charm offensive much like its predecessor in an effort to have the colonial-era treaty on River Nile stand.
But however hard it may try Cairo is now confronted with new realities as an independent South Sudan, which controls a substantial part of the River Nile, has been born.

South Sudan, which could choose a new slate as far as treaties are concerned, could inevitably prove to be the North African state’s biggest test over the Nile waters.
Egypt and Sudan (Khartoum) have been at odds with upriver nations over their efforts to overturn colonial era-treaties granting them the lion’s share of the river’s water.

But recent developments in the two countries and in the region have significantlyturned the tide against them. In Egypt, long-serving President Hosni Mubarak was ousted by popular protests in mid-February.

Leaked diplomatic cables

The military council that now runs the country also arrested several of Mubarak’s former ministers.As if the February regime change was not enough, South Sudan, which has been an observer at past Nile treaty negotiations, now wants to claim its rightful place at the discussions and has already applied to accede to the treaty.

Leaked US diplomatic cables revealed that in 2009 Cairo was uncomfortable with a divided Sudan, fearing an independent South would threaten its stranglehold on the River Nile waters.

In the cables published by online whistleblower WikiLeaks, a former foreign ministry official had even asked the US government to help postpone the January 2011 referendum by four to six years. The official said the creation of “a non-viable state” could threaten Egypt’s access to Nile waters so vital to the country’s agriculture.

But Egypt could renew ties with Ethiopia, which endured more than a decade of lukewarm relations with the Mubarak regime after the June 1995 attempted assassination of the Egyptian leader in Addis Ababa.

On the other hand, Khartoum, too, has been weakened by the secession of the South, with many observers almost certain that Juba will work with the upstream states to force the North and Egypt to agree to a new treaty.

The fact that South Sudan is oil rich is seen as a major reason for tension. However, some argue that the vital water resource is likely to be a far bigger bone of contention in the region long after the oil wells have dried up.

Nairobi is preparing to host the 19th Nile Council of Ministers (Nile-COM) of water affairs of the Nile Basin states on July 28 under the theme “The Nile Basin: An Imperative for Cooperation”.

The meeting will be the first for Egypt’s new man in charge of the water docket Dr Hussein Ihsan Elafty where he is expected to explain the new government’s stand to ministers from Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Sudan, Tanzania, Eritrea, Rwanda, Uganda and Kenya .

The meeting will also announce rotation in the chairmanship of the Nile Council of Ministers. Ethiopia, the current chair, will hand over to Kenya.
“To us, the independence of South Sudan is good news, and we expect they will be allowed to accede soon,” Fred Mwango, the head of Transboundary Waters at Kenya’s ministry of Water and Irrigation, said.
Retired diplomat and executive director of Africa Peace Forum Ochieng Adala believes that the Republic of South Sudan will act in good faith like the rest of the upstream states to make sure that Egypt has its fair share of the waters.

“Egypt is the gift of the Nile. Consequently, no state would want to deny Egypt of its lifeline, as long as Egypt also acknowledges the legitimate rights of all Nile Basin Countries to an equitable share and uses of the Nile Waters,” said Mr Adala.

Among the upstream states, the resolve to have the Comprehensive Framework Agreement (CFA) to replace the 1929 treaty seems unstoppable. The new agreement was opened for signature in May 2010 for a period of one year until May13, 2011 after more than a decade of negotiations through a platform provided by the Entebbe-based Nile Basin Initiative (NBI).

However, NBI suffers from a weak legal base — its existence is founded more on a gentleman’s agreement among member states than any binding agreement.

Remains in limbo

The anticipated Nile Basin Commission, whose establishment and decisions would be legally binding on members, is what is required but remains in limbo over disagreements among the riparian states.

The threshold to make the new treaty binding on all, Egypt and Sudan included, has been met after six riparian countries — Ethiopia, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania, Burundi and Uganda — signed the CFA.

They are championing a treaty that gives them unhindered access to the Nile waters so long as they do not cause “significant harm” to other members.

This is the bone of contention as Egypt and Sudan — the former depends entirely on the Nile for its water requirements — have cited historical rights that give Egypt access to more than half of the river’s annual flow.

When the matter threatened to scuttle the negotiations, Nile-COM, at a special conference in Kinshasa in May 2009, annexed the contentious Article 14(b) of the Comprehensive Framework Agreement which relates to historical water rights and uses.

The article was to be refined by an international audit committee, but to date no agreement has been reached as the two sets of countries have stuck to their guns.

And in May 2010, the CFA was opened for signatures for a year. Among the upstream states only DR Congo has not signed.
Growing defiance

Much as it appears confronted with the realities of a new state and the growing defiance of the upstream states, Egypt’s new military council appears not to have abandoned the former regime’s charm offensive.

Cairo has been sending emissaries to the upstream states to talk them out of ratifying the new treaty.

Nairobi hosted such a delegation a fortnight ago.Kenya, as the next chair of Nile-COM, is also calling on all members to cooperate to seal the deal on the non-management of the resources of River Nile.

Meanwhile, the NBI is now in the process of preparing a number of regional investments totalling Sh40.7 billion ($452 million).

In the past, the rift among the riparian countries has affected the execution of the Subsidiary Action Programmes particularly on the Eastern Nile.
About Sh88 billion ($979 million) of investment projects are now under implementation in the region.

But the continued rift over the CFA could scare off donors, some of whom are growing increasingly impatient with the NBI, a loose entity lacking in legal strength.