Monday, May 13, 2013

An Inspiring Story on Prof Kindiki-Home Background Importance?


The man from Tharaka with a big job

Meru Senator Kiraitu Murungi (left) and Tharaka Nithi senator Prof Kindiki Kithure during a news conference after the Mt Kenya East political caucus meeting at Karen Holiday Homes in Nairobi April 4, 2013. PHOTO/FILE
Meru Senator Kiraitu Murungi (left) and Tharaka Nithi senator Prof Kindiki Kithure during a news conference after the Mt Kenya East political caucus meeting at Karen Holiday Homes in Nairobi April 4, 2013. PHOTO/FILE  NATION
Posted  Sunday, May 12  2013 at  00:10
  • The Tharaka Nithi senator’s role in scheduling government Bills and Motions and determining the order in which they will be presented will see the 40-year-old interact frequently with the President and Mr Ruto.
  • Described by those who know him as a man who has outgrown his age at every level, at 32 Prof Kindiki became the associate dean at the University of Nairobi’s School of Law.
One of the most memorable scenes in the 10th Parliament was the day in August 2009 when then Ikolomani MP Boni Khalwale led the charge to censure Finance minister Amos Kimunya over the controversial sale of the Grand Regency Hotel.
The MP’s performance and his passionate refrain “Kimunya must go” established the gynaecologist as one of the leading lawmakers of the 10th Parliament. He has since taken the battle to anybody who challenged him -- and won.
So it must have been humbling for the “bullfighter” to be taken by the horns on Wednesday as senators voted to replace him on the key Finance, Commerce and Economic Affairs committee -- which he had intended to chair -- and by the team on Implementation, which will ensure resolutions of the House are carried out by the Executive.
The man who led the initiative to tackle Dr Khalwale was Senate Majority Leader Abraham Kithure Kindiki, a political greenhorn whose meteoric rise has confounded both friend and foe.
Seen as the small man in the big office because of his diminutive frame and boyish looks, the charming teacher-turned-politician has, in a year, pulled a fast one to become one of the most influential people in Uhuru Kenyatta’s administration.
His position in the Senate, the institution that can impeach the Head of State, accords him direct access to the President and his Deputy William Ruto.
The Tharaka Nithi senator’s role in scheduling government Bills and Motions and determining the order in which they will be presented will see the 40-year-old interact frequently with the President and Mr Ruto.
Perhaps it is with this in mind that he felt that his role was being undermined by Dr Khalwale who had switched loyalty to the rival Cord coalition even though the Kakamega senator was nominated to the two committees on the basis of a deal between Jubilee and Musalia Mudavadi’s United Democratic Forum, the party on whose ticket Dr Khalwale was elected.
“The most grievous of crimes, according to us, which is against the spirit of democracy and the Political Parties Act, is that despite an existing agreement between UDF and the Jubilee coalition, Dr Khalwale actually proposed and supported the minority candidates for both the chair and the vice-chair in the Implementation Committee,” charged Prof Kindiki.
Not even Dr Khalwale’s defence that co-operation did not amount to a coalition could save him from the wrath of the former lecturer at the University of Nairobi’s Public Law Department who was the Jubilee pointman in the Mt Kenya East region during the campaigns.
His position is seen as a reward for braving the onslaught from Kiraitu Murungi’s Alliance Party of Kenya, which threatened to sweep the Meru, Tharaka-Nithi and Embu counties.
The senator is the son of a Methodist cleric and a housewife, a background that points to a disciplined upbringing, a virtue he enlisted to excel in his academic work.
Described by those who know him as a man who has outgrown his age at every level, at 32 Prof Kindiki became the associate dean at the University of Nairobi’s School of Law.
“In Standard Eight he scored straight As in all subjects and was the best pupil in Meru. Like Okonkwo who had washed his hands and could dine with kings, Kithure could sit with elders in marriage negotiations. His opinions were respected at an early age,” his elder brother, Prof Nyagah Kindiki of Moi University, told the Sunday Nation.
He would later return to test his popularity when he vied for the Senate, and he passed the test, securing 94 per cent of the vote.
Back in his Irunduni village in Mukothima Ward in Tharaka, Kindiki senior’s family established a niche for themselves as one of the most learned in the region, with all the nine siblings attaining at least a Master’s degree.
After finishing top in the pioneer Moi University law class in 1998, Kithure was retained as a graduate assistant before receiving a scholarship to study for his Master of Law and Ph.D at the University of Pretoria.
There, his name is perched at the top of a roll of honour for setting the record of completing his doctorate degree in two-and-half years.
“That record has not been broken since the inception of the school in 1918. And mark you, I was not a full-time student, and I was newly married,” he told the Sunday Nation in his spacious office on the third floor of the Kenyatta International Conference Centre.
Fast forward to 2008 and Prof Kindiki, in another first, would resign from a senior government position “as a matter of principle” after only 100 days in office.
He had been appointed Secretary of Cohesion in the Justice Ministry at a salary of Sh500,000, but complained there was no political will to address the huge challenges facing the country at the time, including the resettlement of Internally Displaced Persons.
“Even my minister Martha Karua at that time was not concerned with the resettlement of IDPs. She had just missed the Deputy Prime Minister’s job and was sulking all over town.”
He went back to his teaching job at the university on “a salary of about Sh100,000”. But even as he scaled the academic heights, he did not lose sight of his legal work. “I practise law but only on a selective basis and take only the most serious cases.”
In addition to the charges facing Mr Ruto at the International Criminal Court, he has taken up work at the International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes in Washington, the Comesa Court of Justice in Lusaka and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda.
He has also had teaching consultancies at institutions like the Central European University in Budapest and the University of Sao Paulo in Brazil.
Prof Kindiki had earlier been expected to vie for the Tharaka parliamentary seat, but his driving ambition led him to the Senate. Area MP Mburi Muiru had received praise from constituents for improving education standards so Prof Kindiki decided to support him for a second term while he went for the Senate seat.
The need for regional balancing further favoured him. Tharaka Nithi is basically divided into two: the agriculturally rich zones Maara and Chuka-Igambang’ombe constituencies and the drier Tharaka Constituency.
With the strong gubernatorial candidates, TNA’s Samuel Ragwa (the eventual winner) and APK’s Petkay Miriti coming from Maara and Chuka-Igambang’ombe respectively, natural justice suggested the senator ought to have come from the lower side. He easily defeated APK’s Kaburu Njeru.
But party intrigues bothered him. He was torn between The National Alliance and the United Republican Party which had both seconded him to the technical team during the negotiations that gave birth to the Jubilee coalition. He settled on TNA.
On Friday, Mr Muiru (URP) said of his senator. “As my constituent, I saw a sharp mind. The courage of even thinking of taking on other Tharaka-Nithi politicians for the big Senate seat was commendable for a person new to the rough and tumble of politics.”
But it is the whipping of Mr Khalwale that revealed the tougher side of Prof Kindiki. It also showed the determination that saw him land the plum position of Majority Leader.
From the corridors of Parliament to hotel lounges and secret rendezvous, the Senator did not miss a chance to meet and mobilise support from whoever he thought was important in his quest, even though the seat was not elective as such.
With fellow senators to MPs from the larger Meru region, he deftly crafted a lobbying machine that was hard to beat.
By the time the experienced and more- oiled senators such as Meru’s Kiraitu Murungi and Nyeri’s Mutahi Kagwe knew it, he had crossed the political rubicon.
His closeness to the President and Mr Ruto also helped. Prof Kindiki says that while he has always been a public-spirited man, he credits Mr Ruto for edging him into politics.
“It was while we were tabling the National Cohesion and Integration Bill which gave birth to the National Cohesion and Integration Commission that Mr Ruto walked to where we were sitting and told me: “Congratulations on your appointment, but I think you are in the wrong place. You will serve this country better if you join politics.” Then they parted ways.
Two years later, Mr Ruto would enrol him as one of his lawyers at the International Criminal Court where he faces crimes against humanity charges, a development that propelled Prof Kindiki to national fame because of the publicity the case attracted.
One of the most trusted men to whom the President assigns critical matters, he spoke of how he first met the future Head of State. “It was when I joined the legal team. At first, he did not strike me as an outstanding person. But as we later interacted, I have come to know him as a most honest, sincere person who means well for Kenya. He has a fairly concrete clarity of mind.”
He said he was proud of the pair — President Kenyatta and Mr Ruto — and is looking forward to a “significant recreation of some of our sectors like agriculture”.
Prof Kindiki and his wife Joyce, a university lecturer, have two children.

When will Kenyan Government Start Acting on Elephant, Rhino Massacres?

Group fights to save the elephant

PHOTO | CARL DE SOUZA Chinese actress Li Bingbing at the Samburu game reserve during an official visit on May 8, 2013. Li Bingbing is a Unep goodwill ambassador and was in Kenya to highlight Africa’s poaching crisis.
PHOTO | CARL DE SOUZA Chinese actress Li Bingbing at the Samburu game reserve during an official visit on May 8, 2013. Li Bingbing is a Unep goodwill ambassador and was in Kenya to highlight Africa’s poaching crisis.  AFP
  • Walk meant is to sensitise Kenyans on the drawbacks of killing wildlife
Some 500 conservationists kicked off the second leg of the Elephants and Rhino Anti-poaching Walk at the world famous Maasai Mara Game Reserve over the weekend.
The awareness campaign dubbed ‘Ivory Belongs to Elephants’ is intended to cover 1,050 kilometres in areas with national parks, game reserves and animal sanctuaries all over the country before it ends in Nairobi.
The event was flagged off at Sekenani gate by Narok deputy governor, Everline Aruasa and preceded to Ngoswani and Narok town, before it proceeded to Mai Mahiu, Naivasha, Nyahururu, Rimuruti, Isiolo, Embu, Kirinyaga and Nairobi.
The walk, which is expected to take 30 days, is the second leg after the first one was held with people walking from Mombasa to Nairobi.
The event was organised by the Elephants Neighbours Centre and sponsored by World Wide Fund for nature, Sarova Hotels, Maniango Safaris and International Fund for Animal Welfare.
The executive director of Elephant Neighbours centre, Mr Jim Nyamu, said they want to create awareness on the value of elephants by educating local communities on the dangers of poaching.
Mr Nyamu urged MPs to uphold the proposed Wildlife Bill.
“We want to create a platform where we educate people living around wildlife to see the importance of wild animals,” he said.
The conservationist noted that tourists visit the country to see animals like elephants but if the numbers dwindled, they would opt for other countries and the nation would lose on revenue.
“Maasai Mara risks losing its glory if the runaway poaching is not brought to an end,” he said.
Mr Patrick Wanjohi of Mountain Rock Camps said when the animal survival is threatened, business people in the industry are also threatened.
“We really support the conservation of wildlife and encourage locals to help in fighting the poaching menace,” said Mr Wanjohi.
Maasai Mara senior warden Stephen Minis, said it was everyone’s responsibility to ensure that poaching is brought to end because it was threatening revenue from the tourism sector.
“Poaching is being done in conservancies. The animals are safer in the parks because we have beefed up security,” said Mr Minis.
He also noted the animals were important resource that generates revenue to the locals’ people and used in the implementation of various projects in the region.
Siana Wildlife Trust chairman Sammy Nkoitoi said that poaching for elephant tusks in the Mara-Serengeti region in the recent past across the border was on the increase and said that there was need to take quick and decisive measures to curb the poaching that is geared towards reducing the animal population.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The harassment Egyptian women undergo daily

Egyptian man disguised as woman is harassed

Associated Press/Courtesy of Awel el Kheit - In this undated image made from video released by the producers of "Awel el Kheit," or "the Thread," which aired in May 2013 on the private TV station ONTV, Waleed Hammad walks in a busy shopping district in Cairo, Egypt, dressed as a woman, as a hidden camera crew films him for an investigative story on sexual harassment. The 24-year-old actor dressed conservatively for his mission into the secret world of sexual harassment and abuse on the streets of Cairo, donning a long skirt and sleeved shirt and covering his head like many Egyptian women. (AP Photo/Courtesy of Awel el Kheit)

CAIRO (AP) — Waleed Hammad dressed conservatively for his secret mission into the world of sexual harassment and abuse on the streets of Cairo, donning a long tan skirt and sleeved shirt, and at times covering his head like many Egyptian women.
The 24-year-old actor walked the sidewalks, hidden cameras in tow, for an investigative television report, hoping the broadcast would enlighten national debate about how to combat deep-rooted day-to-day sexual harassment and abuse in this patriarchal society.
Initiatives to counter the problem have mushroomed in recent months. Vigilantes groups have started protecting women at gatherings, particularly at large protests or during national holidays when groping and harassment in crowds is at an all-time high. Activists have offered self-defense classes for women. Social network sites have been started where women can "name and shame" their harassers.
On the other side of the debate are conservative religious clerics and some government officials who blame women, saying they invite harassment and sexual abuse by mixing with men. Their comments have inflamed the discourse, particularly at a time when Egypt's volatile and polarized politics blur social and political issues following the 2011 uprising that ousted longtime autocrat Hosni Mubarak.
As he strolled, Hammad, who wore light makeup to conceal hints of facial hair and accentuate his eyes, was hissed at and verbally abused. In one instance — when he was wearing a head veil — he was taken for a prostitute and offered up to 4,000 Egyptian pounds ($575) for one night.
"I can go wherever I want, do whatever I want very simply, very easily, very casually," Hammad said. "For a woman, it boils down to her having to focus on how she breathes while she is walking. It is not just the walk. It is not just the clothes. It is not what she says or how she looks."
As a woman walking down the street, "you have to be in a constant state of alertness."
What Hammad experienced is something Egyptian women endure every day. While not new to Egypt's conservative society, sexual harassment has grown increasingly violent and visible in the nation, which has an embattled police force and an absence of legislation to address it. Egyptian law defines and criminalizes assault, but not sexual harassment.
"What I learned is that this definitely is not a problem with men only," Hammad said. "It is a problem, a deficiency in the entire society."
A report last month carried out by a U.N. Women agency, Egypt's Demographic Center, and the National Planning Institute found that more than 99 percent of hundreds of women surveyed in seven of the country's 27 provinces reported experiencing some form of sexual harassment ranging from minor harassment to rape.
Mozn Hassan, a women rights activist who works with the victims of sexual abuse, said the problem will fester as long as there are no laws to punish harassers, no investigations into violent abuse and the government fails to admit there is a problem.
This week, at a public meeting to make recommendations to Egyptian President Morsi Mohammed on how to address the problem, Omaima Kamel, presidential adviser on women affairs, said she was seeking realistic statistics on violence against women because she sensed real exaggeration of the numbers reported by some research centers, comments she repeated in media interviews.
Kamel is a leading member of the Muslim Brotherhood, which emerged as the most powerful political faction in Egypt since the uprising. The group has recently criticized a U.N. document being drafted on violence against women. The Brotherhood said it was "deceitful," clashed with Islamic principles and undermined family values. The Brotherhood said it advocated sexual freedoms for women and the right to abortion "under the guise of sexual and reproductive rights."
Besides the daily experience of harassment on the streets of Egypt, sexual assaults at anti-government protests, where women have been groped, stripped and even raped, have risen both in number and intensity during the past year of continued unrest in Egypt.
The United Nations said it had reports of 25 sexual assaults on women at political rallies at Tahrir Square, the center of the uprising, in one week early this year. Operation Anti-Sexual Harassment/Assault, which patrolled the square, reported 19 incidents alone on Jan. 25 — the second anniversary of the start of the uprising — including a case of a teenager raped with a bladed instrument.
Abuse at political events has emboldened activists who seek change, but the television program wanted to show how all Egyptian women live daily with the fear of being sexually harassed or abused.
The program was an online hit, shared by thousands of viewers and lauded as brave, creative, and sparked a comparison between Egypt and other Arab countries.
Lena el-Ghadban, the senior reporter on the program, "Awel el Kheit" or "the Thread" which aired earlier this month on the private TV station ONTV, said the program sought to offer a fresh glimpse into the problem through the eyes of men.
"We want them to try to feel how women feel about sexual harassment," el-Ghadban said. "If the man sees himself as the victim of sexual harassment maybe this could get him to think, 'What am I doing?'"
Men interviewed for the program commonly blamed women for dressing or looking in ways that invited sexual harassment. At the same time, they disclosed how men bribed a coffee shop owner to spray water on the pavement so women would be prompted to lift their long conservative dresses.
They wanted to get a peek at their legs.

Friday, April 5, 2013

A good book on plagiarism and fabrication from

For those who still uphold the truth and honesty in their writing, this could be an extra on your list.

Scroll through the story 
 “Telling the Truth and Nothing But" to get it

Enjoy reading.