Friday 9th of June 2023 03:32:34 AM
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Mombasa Markiti traders call on the county to reduce taxes

Traders in the market./COURTESY


Mombasa County traders are now urging the County government to reduce taxes paid by traders to the county.

Speaking to Baraka FM, the traders working at Mackinnon Market popularly known as Markiti said the current economic situation has affected their businesses.

“The price of various products in the market has really gone up meaning that we are also selling at higher prices than before which translates to fewer people buying,” said Abdulkadir Jeylan Murithi.

“Products such as potatoes used to be available for 3500 shillings a sack before now it is 7200. Sugar a kilo was 150 and now it is 200 thus leading products like achari to double the price,” he added.

A stall at Markiti Market./FAITH BALTAZAR

The traders say that the high cost of prices has also resulted in waste as most of their stock ends up going bad due to lack of purchase.

“The truth is that traders in Markiti are only getting money enough for pocket change and maybe paying the rent. We are also facing the challenge of goods going bad. As you know, most of the goods sold here in Markiti are perishables. We are not selling,” said Omar Abbass.

A spices stand at Markiti market./FAITH BALTAZAR

Mombasa leading in land-grabbing cases in the Coast region

Mombasa Law Courts./COURTESY

Mombasa County is leading in cases of land grabbing in the Coast region, this is according to the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission.

According to EACC, there are over 120 active civil cases going on in various courts in the coast region.

EACC Head of Corporate Affairs Eric Ngumbi said the commission is seeking to return to the public stolen property worth sh.8 billion which was fraudulently acquired and is currently in the hands of private individuals.

“In the last four years, the commission has managed to reclaim public property worth sh.23.7 billion and through Corruption Disruption EACC has managed to prevent public property worth sh.32.7 billion from being fraudulently acquired,” said Ngumbi.

Properties that the commission has managed to reclaim and return to the public in Mombasa include the Hobley Road/Buxton Government estate, Tudor Road Reserve, and Government Houses in Nyali belonging to the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority.

Below are some of the cases that are currently in the Mombasa courts;

  • Illegally acquired public land belonging to the Kenya Airports Authority (KAA), which was set aside for the expansion of the Moi International Airport worth sh.2.5 billion.
  • Illegally acquired public property including government houses for civil servants belonging to the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) with a current market value of sh.358.5 million.
  • Illegally acquired road reserve, worth sh.21 million, excised from Machakos Road in Mombasa currently used by the University of Nairobi’s Mombasa campus as a parking lot area.
  • Five parcels of land stolen from the Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC) worth sh.50 million

“There are two types of theft of public property that EACC deals with; one is when a civil servant uses his/her position to fraudulently acquire property and the other is when individuals fraudulently take over government land or even property, which may include money,” said Ngumbi.

New study shows that children living in informal settlements are more prone to develop asthma

Nairobi's Kibera slum./COURTESY

Children living in informal settlements (slums) are at a higher risk of developing lung diseases compared to those living in formal settlements.

A study by the Kenya Medical Research Institute (KEMRI) in collaboration with universities in the UK led by Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine (LSTM) has revealed.

The study christened ‘Tupumue‘ shines a light on the threat posed by pollution to children’s lungs.

Prof. Graham Devereux who led the study on behalf of LSTM said that this was the first study to show that the 350-500 million children living in informal (slum) settlements around the world are at increased risk of developing asthma.

“This is more severe and is associated with sources of indoor and outdoor air pollution. Also, those children are less likely to be diagnosed with and treated for asthma,” said Prof. Devereux.

The study team recruited more than 2,400 children aged 5-18 from schools in two closes but very different communities in Nairobi, Kenya – one an informal settlement and the other a formal gated community.

The team used scientific measures including questionnaires, lung function, and air pollution tests to quantify the children’s health, well-being, and local air quality.

“The success of the Tupumue study, even through the COVID-19 pandemic, was a result of the study acceptability and ownership by all stakeholders, the multidisciplinary approach, and a highly tenacious field team,” Dr. Hellen Meme who led the study from KEMRI said.

KEMRI Director General Prof. Elijah Songok said policymakers should use the study to find ways to reduce air pollution for the health of the children.

“KEMRI is proud to have participated in this collaborative landmark study which shows the link between air quality and children’s lung health in informal settlements. These results are highly encouraging and we hope it will further persuade policymakers to improve children’s healthcare and reduce air pollution in order to scale down cases of asthma,” said Prof. Songok.

A sentiment that was supported by Prof. Graham Devereux from LSTM who said they hope Tupumue will help provide informal settlements with the information they need to persuade policymakers to improve the care of children with lung disease and to reduce air pollution exposures.

The team also that the data contributes to identifying further areas of research and helps to target interventions that can greatly improve the lives of those in the local community.

“Even as enactment and enforcement of laws to reduce outdoor and indoor air pollution that our study showed have an association with symptoms of asthma in children is ongoing, in the short term, residents of informal settlements could be assisted to address some of the contributors to indoor air pollution that were found to be associated with symptoms of asthma such as the burning of mosquito coils through provision and use of affordable alternatives such as insecticide-treated mosquito nets,” said Dr. Meme.

Mombasa parents call on the national gov’t to disburse school funds

Grade seven students in class at Kadzandani primary school./COURTESY


Parents in Mombasa are calling on the Ministry of Education to release capitation funds for schools.

Speaking to Baraka FM, the parents said the delay in the disbursement of the funds has been an inconvenience to learners.

“We are kindly asking the government to release funds to schools in order for our children to stay in schools,” said one of the parents.

The parents claim that public schools are going through a tough time running their daily operations due to a lack of funds.

Their cries come even as Education Cabinet Secretary Ezekiel Machogu assured teachers that the funds will be allocated.

“You know the amount we give per student is 22,240 and in the coming week, I am sure teachers are anxiously waiting. I want to make an undertaking that you are going to get capitation money for senior secondary,” Machogu said.

Paul Mackenzie and 17 others to remain in custody for another 7 days

Paul Mackenzie and other co-accused at the Shanzu law courts. They will be detained for another week./COURTESY

Controversial Pastor Paul Nthenge Mackenzie, his wife Rhoda Mumbua Maweu, and 16 other people who were arrested in connection with the deaths at Shakahola will remain in custody for another week.

Shanzu Court directed that Mackenzie and the other accused be detained for another seven days to allow their lawyers time to respond to the prosecution’s application to extend their detention.

Also read: One of the Shakahola victims died from TB

The prosecution had requested that the court extend the accused detention by 60 days.

The Prosecution and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations are seeking an extension to allow the completion of investigations that they have termed as complex.

More bodies are still being exhumed, with DNA analysis ongoing.

“The investigations team has gathered sufficient and credible evidence to sustain a watertight case against Mackenzie and his collaborators. They will face among other charges, genocide and crimes against humanity,” said Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki.

Meanwhile, the construction of security roads across the more than 37,000 acres of Chakama Ranch has commenced.

Interior CS Kithure Kindiki said the roads will facilitate comprehensive, methodical, and scientific investigations and facilitate search and rescue efforts, as well as identification of graves.

“Investigations have so far established that Mackenzie extended his criminal activities beyond the 800-acre parcel of land at the Shakahola Forest,” said the CS.

Kenyans to dig deeper in their pockets for sugar

Butali sugar retailing at sh.430 for the 2kg packet./Elizabeth Mutinda


Kenyans will have to dig deeper into their pockets for a sweet cup of tea as the cost of living continues to go up.

The price of sugar has risen from an average of sh.150 at the beginning of the year to the current price of over sh.205 per kilogram, depending on the retailer.

At supermarkets here in Mombasa, the 2kg packet of sugar is selling between sh.415 to sh.430 depending on the brand and retailer.

A spot check by Baraka FM at Naivas and Quickmart supermarkets shows that the 1kg packet of sugar is retailing between sh.205 and sh.215.

Retail shops/stores are selling the ¼ kg sugar at sh.55, up from around sh.25-30 at the beginning of the year.

Meanwhile, a half litre of milk is retailing at between sh.55 and sh.70, while 400gms loaves of bread is selling at sh.65 with the 200gms selling at sh.40.

This is happening even as President William Ruto assured that his government was working to reduce the cost of living. 

COVID-19 outbreak was a learning step in enhancing our functional capacities, Health PS

Health Principal Secretary Mary Muthoni during the opening of the 9th CAPSCA Meeting./COURTESY

At least 3,986,280 positive cases of COVID-19 were reported in the country by the 5th of May 2023, out of which 5,688 succumbed to the disease.

Speaking in Mombasa during the opening of the 9th Africa Regional Meeting of the Collaborative Arrangement for the Prevention of Public Health Events in Civil Aviation (CAPSCA), Health Principal Secretary Mary Muthoni said that the outbreak of COVID-19 also acted as a learning opportunity for the country.

“The COVID-19, Ebola, and Marburg Virus Disease outbreaks and other public health events have served to underscore the importance of a whole government, whole society approach to pandemic prevention, preparedness, and response efforts,” said PS Mary Muthoni.

Speaking during the opening, the Health PS said that the outbreaks of diseases such as COVID-19, Ebola, and Marburg Disease affected the aviation industry.

“Kenya Civil Aviation Authority (KCAA) and the International Civil Aviation Organization play a critical role in ensuring multi-stakeholder involvement in planning preparedness and response strategies to public health events affecting the aviation sector,” said the Health PS.

PS Muthoni said that the three-day meeting will provide an opportunity for countries to review their pandemic preparedness and response, and document best practices and challenges in view of sustaining and building on the gains.

“As a country, we are also working closely with the international organizations to enhance global health security. We are currently serving as Vice Chair and Bureau member for the WHO AFRO region on the WHO Working Group on amendments to the International Health Regulations (WGIHR),” said PS Muthoni.

Mombasa CSO raises concerns over increased pollution in Kibarani


Activists in Mombasa County have raised concerns over the increased pollution in Kibarani, Jomvu sub-county.

While commemorating World Environment Day in Kibarani, Haki Yetu Land Department’s Coordinator John Obonyo reiterated that pollution from the industries in the area has led to health problems among the residents.

“There are increased cases of tuberculosis victims in Kibarani, based on the local clinic records there is also increased miscarriage among women,” said Obonyo.

He alleged that industry owners in the area have continuously ignored the National Environmental Management Authority regulations in their operations leaving residents vulnerable to the impacts of wastes from the industries.

“As a Non-Governmental Organization we cannot just sit back and watch residents suffer, we are going to remind NEMA and any other stakeholder of their duties,” highlighted Obonyo.

According to Obonyo, Kibarani is one of the informal neighborhoods hugely affected by clinker emissions.

He called on the government and other stakeholders to invest in public education on the environment to mitigate the impact of climate change, saying that poverty and lack of public education on the environment are among the major setbacks in environment protection.

Learners take part in the tree planting exercise while marking World Environment Day in Mombasa’s Kibarani area./COURTESY

To mark World Environment Day 2023 Haki Yetu joined the Kibarani community in planting 600 mangrove and 50 blue gum seedlings.

Speaking during the event, Jomvu constituency CDF Secretary Ganatra Robert Okochi urged the youth to fully take part in environment protection.

“I want to ask youths from all other places to join registered groups and write proposals for environmental protection initiatives and as the leaders, we will provide the necessary support,” said Okochi.

World Environment Day is celebrated every 5th June. This year’s theme was a Solution to plastic pollution.

From Messi, Benzema to Roberto Firmino here are the best free agents in the top five European Leagues

Argentina Captain Lionel Messi./COURTESY

The European top five leagues 2022/2023 season ended this weekend and the summer transfer window is now a stressful time for those involved with football, it is incredibly frantic for those players whose contracts expire at the end of this month.

Many clubs will be buzzing rebuilding their squads for the next season and some big players will leave their current clubs for free and join other clubs.

Here are some of the most valuable players who have announced their departure.

1. Lionel Messi

The Argentine forward will leave PSG this summer, after two seasons with the French Ligue 1 giants.

Messi’s contract expires this month, leaving the World Cup winner with plenty of choices on where he chooses to make his next move having been approached by Saudi Pro League side Al-Hilal and his former club Barcelona who also want to re-sign him.

2. Roberto Firmino

After eight years at Anfield, the Brazilian star leaves Liverpool as a legend having made a super trio alongside Mo Salah and Sadio Mane and winning everything with the club.

The 31-year-old has been linked with Spanish giants Real Madrid and MLS clubs.

3. Karim Benzema

The French superstar made surprising news on Saturday after announcing that he will not renew his contract.

Karim Benzema will leave Real Madrid 14 years after joining from Ligue 1 club Lyon.

The 35-year-old won La Liga four times and the Champions League five times in Santiago Bernabeu.

4. N’golo Kante

Kante is yet to announce a new deal at Chelsea, with the 32-year-old having endured an injury-hit season in which the Blues have struggled.

This summer could end a distinguished career at Stamford Bridge for the Champions League winner as Pochettino is looking for his replacement this summer.

5. Zlatan Ibrahimovic

The former PSG, Barcelona, and Manchester United star announced his retirement from football aged 41 on Sunday.  

The Swedish striker scored 511 goals in 866 club games as well as 62 in 122 for his country

Ibrahimovic struggled with injuries this season with AC Milan and after a long football career, he has decided to hang his boots.

6. Eden Hazard

Hazard terminated his contract with Real Madrid with one year left.

The Belgium winger joined Los Blancos in 2019 from Chelsea but has struggled with back-to-back injuries in Spain.

The 32-year-old is yet to decide his future having already announced his retirement from international football with Belgium last year after a horrific World Cup campaign.

Other players include; Marco Asensio (Real Madrid) who is joining PSG, Wilfred Zaha (Crystal Palace) Youri Tielemans (Leicester City) Adrien Rabiot (Juventus) Naby Keita (Liverpool) Lucas Moura (Tottenham) Yerry Mina (Everton) David de Gea (Man Utd) Adama Traore (Wolves) Toni Kroos (Real Madrid) Angel Di Maria (Juventus) and Marcus Thuram (Gladbach).

Odinga gives President Ruto until Monday to reconsider Finance Bill

Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya Alliance leaser Raila Odinga./COURTESY

Opposition chief Raila Odinga has given the Kenya Kwanza administration up to Monday next week to listen to the plight of Kenyans on the controversial Finance Bill 2023 or face the wrath. 

Odinga said it is incorrect for President William Ruto to impose undue taxes on the already overtaxed Kenyans whom he said the majority live below a dollar a day. 

Speaking at the Jaramogi Oginga Odinga Foundation Headquarters in Nairobi when he handed over tools of work worth Ksh. 20 million donated by Westlands MP Tim Wanyonyi under the Nairobi Youth and Women Empowerment Program, Odinga accused Ruto of re-introducing dictatorship in the country which he said will not go down well with the oppressed majority.

Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya Alliance leader Raila Odinga with Westlands MP Tim Wanyonyi while handing over tools of work worth sh.20./COURTESY

The opposition chief said the Kenya Kwanza administration had in only eight months reneged on their campaign promises and instead resorted to wanton theft of public money. 

“They made a million promises to the people, non of those promises has been implemented and there is no indication that they will execute them,” Odinga said.

The ODM leader said Kenyans were tired of empty promises by the Kenya Kwanza administration coupled with the increasingly high cost of living saying the time had come when they should say enough is enough. 

“We shall blow the trumpet, we will tell you what to do. That day is coming soon,” he said. 

During the occasion, over 30 groups received equipment ranging from carwash machines, blow dryers for salons, carts, tents, and seats.

Odinga urged the youth to make good use of the equipment to earn a living as a way of fighting poverty.