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Monday, June 30, 2008

Grand Regency Hotel Scam: What Kenyans Still Don’t Know

Is The “Blood” Hotel also the Cursed Hotel?

There are many folks who have left comments in this blog trying to suggest that there is no big deal with the sale of the Grand Regency hotel to Libyans.

These sentiments no doubt come from a position of ignorance.

There are many very important facts that these good Kenyans do not realize.

And my list does NOT include the obvious fact that public property must be sold openly to the highest bidder. Not secretly with the transaction finalized in Amos Kimunya’s favourite bar to avoid the attention of other nosy cabinet colleagues.

Firstly it is important to note that the Kshs 2.9 billion paid will NOT go to the public coffers. In fact this is cash that has mostly already been spent in PNU campaigns in the last ill-fated general elections of last December. In other words the hotel was traded for party politics.

As we pointed out in our earlier article (which was rubbished by most commentators as usual, but has now come to pass) this is a deal that was sealed in June 2007 when your duly elected president went to beg for presidential campaign funds in Libya. Since then Kibaki has been under such intense pressure from Col. Muammar Gaddafi to honour the deal and Kimunya “accidentally” alluded to that during the press conference where he confirmed that the secret sale had taken place after all. And after earlier appearing on national TV to tell Kenyans that the Grand Regency sale saga was a rumour from some bar.

To make matters worse the Grand Regency did not even rightfully belong to Paul Pattni (or Kamlesh Pattni, or whatever you want to call him) in the first place. While he did pay some money to gain control of it, the truth is that part of the purchase price was paid in human blood. The legitimate owners of the hotel were the Aslam family (remember the former majority shareholder and owner of Pan African bank, Mohammed Aslam who “conveniently” died under mysterious circumstances the day before he was supposed to give evidence in the Ouko commission investigating the still unsolved murder of the late foreign affairs minister?). Aslam’s wife was hurriedly given a pittance in cash to flee the country with her frightened children and forget about the hotel. Which she did.

Impeccable sources assure me (sorry to use this nasty American expression) that the human waste is about to hit the fan. Other political fires that have been quietly burning for quite a while are now well above boiling point. Top ODM party officials are livid because Francis Muthaura, on instructions from the duly elected president, has been transferring civil servants seen to be sympathetic to ODM all over the place. This Grand Regency saga would seem to be the perfect opportunity for them to go for PNU’s jugular. There is no doubt on my mind, based on the information that I have, that ODM are planning something BIG. I have no idea what it is, but this has to be a tense moment for the nation and our infant coalition government.

The words of South African judge Yohann Kriegler last week are still echoing in my mind.

The judge said (while hitting out at political parties for sending hecklers to his public hearings at the KICC last week in an effort to swing the commissions’ sentiments in their favour); “Politics is not for sissies.”

How true.


Kenyans and others abroad can now operate as if they were in Kenya. Invest, supervise their investments, find a clean budget hotel, buy land, pay their old mother’s electricity bills etc.

P.S. Exactly how much did Presidential candidate Mwai Kibaki spend on his presidential campaign last year? The latest Kumekucha’s raw notes explores that question in great detail but what will shock most Kenyans is the other source of those funds (apart from the Libyans) according to knowledgeable sources.

52 comments:

Ngunyi Ngunjiri said...

The culture of impunity has to stop, and the time is NOW!!!

It is most unfortunate that this could be happening in our country at such a time as this, and the perpetrators are elected representatives of the people. I am utterly disgusted to say the least.

The situation at hand is redeemable. The political class must come out strongly to censure the President- both sides of the political divide must do this, or else the faith of the people will be lost.

My greatest fear is the possibility of inaction from the political class, or a sense of complicity( Achievable by arm twisting The Baks to surrender some dockets to RAO in exchange for political 'quiet' and a possible deal regarding elections 2012)

Personally, as citizens and tax payers I believe we should hold mass protests outside Harambee House.

If need be, I can clear my schedule to attend/organise such a protest. Let him who hears the call, answer it.

Je, umeitwa???

Anonymous said...

What more is remaining? Gaddafi financing your campaigns for a mere 2b or 2.9b...BIG NO!!!Trust me their is more to come. Watch the space.
I am disappointed of being an ICPAK member, i am hoping and praying that my chairman (Steve Lugalia) will condemn such acts of impunity. I mean si Kimunya is a member and he pledged to uphold integrity and transparency in all that he does!!!
Do you remember when Gaddafi and his security detail goofed in UG when he was going to open a mosque in Champala (kampala, I am sure that is the day our "duly" elected president went to ask for more time. It is payback time, I am hoping that this fellow didn't sell our birthright

Ivy

Phil said...

Chris, quite right.

You have heard the captain say it many times over. He has a lot of respect for the former finance minister Daudi Mwiraria who made history by stepping aside to facilitate investigations into the anglo-leasing scam. Unlike Murungaru with his visa bans and Kiraitu with his Kroll report, no one has quite actually been able to directly nail Mwiraria with treasury mega scams.

That aside, the real captain (forget the fake ones - I understand some people are trying very hard to earn this title in Mwingi) had a one on one meeting with Kibaki on Saturday before heading to Nyayo Stadium. Heads will certainly roll and Kibaki will have to make sacrifices for the sake of his own regime's stability. There's no two ways about it, heads have to roll and if need be (there's a lot of need) some big fish will find themselves in an anti-corruption court sooner rather than later. Unfortunately, as history shows, Kibaki is not known to have outrightly sacked any minister apart from Wycliff Osundwa. Recall the ODM were edged out of cabinet by a major cabinet overhaul following the referendum. The three M's were actually forced to hand in resig' letters. What the captain is telling Kibaki, political friends must be made to understand this is now a grand coalition and no more underhand deals will be tolerated. Orengo's own personal security has had to be enhanced because he is obviously stepping on very powerful toes.

Additionally, ODM is walking the talk on the anti-corruption pledge. Unlike fake ODM cloned parties who are so fond of giving pledges they do not intend to keep, ODM is living up to its pledge to zero tolerance to corruption.

The long and short of the captain's message to Kibaki: Kimunya, Ndungu and Ringera (and the junior officers at the Lands ministry) had better resign immediately, or you sack them, or you forget about this Grand Coalition with US in it. Which means Kibaki will be left on his own to tackle issues of resettling IDPs, constitutional review and all the political tensions arising out of it as well as a real threat of having a minority in parliament because NOT all PNU MPs will support Kibaki/Kimunya axis on this GR scam.

Marianne Briner said...

Chris - I am glad that you still read my messages and comments and incorporated the information on Mohammed Aslam here. As I told you, I had met him and his family several times also at their house. They were good people. But it was obvious (already early 1989 when I last saw him) that he was a haunted man. He got into the hands of the Biwott-led clique and was forced to put his Panafrican Bank at their disposal to deal with their corruption money. They felt safe with him since as a foreigner he could easily be threatened to have to leave the country if he did not 'behave'.

It was therefore a great shock for me when John Troon called me from Kisumu during the Gichuru-Hearings and told me about his death (it was actually Biwott's lawyer, Kapila, who brought the news to Troon the evening before Aslam wanted to give evidence. Kapila was shocked and shaking as Troon told me).

I was at that time in Tanzania, ready to also go to Kisumu. Troon together with Paul Muite (who was my lawyer at that time) had convinced the Public Prosecutor Chunga to sign the Summon for me although Moi had put pressure on him not to do it. So when Moi heard that Chunga had allowed that I was coming, he stopped the hearings and disbandened the Commission. Just as a farce, Biwott and Oyugi were then arrested and set free after two weeks because of 'lack of evidence'. - John Troon's comment: "Lack of evidence? Shame on you, Your Excellency".

Coming back to the Grand Regency. I find it more than disgusting that Mutula Kilonzo now comes out to critisize the deal. He is the last who should open his mouth. He says that he acted as a lawyer when Pattni 'paid' 4 Billion for the hotel in 1994.

We all know that Mutula was and most probably still is Moi's private lawyer and we all know that Pattni never paid this money. The Grand Regency was given to him for services rendered in connection with the Goldenberg Scam.

But Moi, Biwott and all the other crooks (including Mutula) needed a neutral face and a reason why then the Aslam family (Mrs. Aslam had run away to London with her children after her husband was killed) received 7 Million $ to make sure that they kept quiet. It was Abraham Kiptanui who brought the money to them as he confirmed later in connection with the Goldenberg Hearings.

Do you understand the whole dirty trick? It is even worse than the public and you could ever imagine.

I therefore also agree with you that this Hotel is cursed since it is covered with blood (Robert Ouko, Mohammed Aslam and all the others who died in this connection). And last but not least it is covered with the sweat and blood of the Kenyan people since it was built with the money stolen from them.

Regarding the new owners: They have already arrived in Nairobi and were introduced to the Hotel Management on Saturday. Ghadaffi acted very fast.

It is said that he signed other deals with Kibaki last year. These include:

Kenya Refinery (although an Indian Company had won the tender)

East African Marine Cable

Kenya Pipeline Eldoret-Kampala

The new LPG Handling and Storage Facilities in Mombasa

Kenya Petroleum Refineries etc.

But worst of all: they have been promised 51 % shares in all this which would make them the majority partner, the one who makes all the decisions.

This is very unusual since it is normally always the Government who continues being the major share holder, giving the others max. 49 %. The Kenyan Government would therefore give up all their controlling rights, any influence on the work force (the Lybians could bring in whoever and whatever they want) and most of all, the Kenyan Government would not have any control on the management, money flow etc.

Do you understand how dangerous this could be for Kenya?

As much as I support foreign investment - a call done by Raila whereever he goes -, the Kenyan Government should never dispose of their assets like this. These are not private deals. This is the future of their people which they play with.

The Lybians will control the whole economy of the country since they will import only their oil, sell it for the price they want etc. - it is rumoured that Biwott wants to sell also his Petrol Stations, Hotels etc. and also Moi is interested to deal with them for some of his properties.

Maybe this was the shady deal behind the curtain done last year when all of the sudden Moi, Biwott etc. started to support Kibaki to be re-elected.

So if Mutula wants to come out clean now and wants to demonstrate that he is ' not carrying anybody's bags, not even Moi's' as he once wrote to me, he should tell us what he knows. All of it and not just some selective details letting him look like Mr. Clean now.

He should confess all his sins and not spare anybody - not even himself.

The same applies to James Orengo. It is nice to hear him shouting now. But also he knows more than what he they tells us now. I know, he will try to hide behind his 'lawyer-client keeping secrets' rubbish. But either he opens his mouth or should shut up once and for all. When I heard him complain that the Grand Regency deal was done without informing him, I was just laughing. The people who did it, knew exactly that Orengo had some dirty linen in his own cabinet (or better had protected and defended some very dirty clients and maybe still does). So why bother about him?

Like somebody once said: Politics is a very dirty game ..... Orengo and others are only just about to learn this.

Let's wait and see if they come out with clean hands. I doubt, they will.

Phil said...

PS

Chris Just a correction!

The funds received by CBK for sale of Grand Regency is in the region of Kshs. 7 billion! Thats right Chris, this is closer to the REAL value of this asset. Remember it is a highly profitable going concern.
However, on the sale agreement with Libyans, the value penned in in 2.9 billion.

The balance is what was used to pay commissions to senior people in the then GNU government, finance PNU & NARC-Kenya campaigns and also split the once united ODM-K, then continue financing it.

Recall the many trips to state house by you-know-who, even after numerous opinion polls had shown who was winning and who was trailing by a wide margin but still insisted on enslaving a whole ethnic group into his ill-fated mission?

M-Pesa said...

This is a national mega corruption scandal and not a PANUA/DOMO shouting match to see who scores most points. We have only one government not two and to be fair, Kimunya's scandalous and arrogant sale of Grand Regency Hotel has been blasted by all sides and anyone sane.

Kibaki is not known for loyalty, so don't expect him to defend Kimunya when worse comes to worst. This is pure corruption which stinks to high heavens, pure and simple.

Something else which many Kenyans seem to forget is that when Grand Regency was snatched from Bro Kamlesh, it had over 300 millioin bob in it's accounts. When Receiver Manager handed the hotel back to Central Bank, it had over 250 million in the accounts. All that money -as you may have rightly guessed by now- has since disappeared in thin air and various files have evaporated.

Aaron Ringera's infamous finger prints can be seen allover these scandals despite being paid a montly salary of Sh 2.5M to do absolutely nothing. This time Kibaki's legendary aloofness won't save him and well done to Martha for reminding the president that the Treasury is indeed a den of thieves, liars and cheats. Heads must roll.

Anonymous said...

Phil - since I see you busy posting comments. Could you please also enlighten us on who was the Senior Government Official caught in Oslo frequenting a prostitute without using condoms while being on a official mission to that country?

Up to now the Norwegian Media did not disclose the name because of the embarrassment this would cause to the Kenyan Government. But the girl has announced that she will give the whole story to the Media if she is not paid what the Kenyan has promised her to keep quiet.

If you keep quiet on this story, we have to assume that it is a friend of yours belonging to the ODM group. I sincerely hope that this is not the case. But anyway, what a shame for Kenya to be in the news again like this after similar cases had been reported in the past (starting with Biwott caught while on an official visit in New Zealand, the Kenyan Ambassador in Washington etc. etc.).

Anonymous said...

According to the official ODM list of who contributed to their Election Campaign, also Ghadaffi's son appears here for having given them money and it is exactly this son who owns the company which now bought the Grand Regency and signed a deal for seven more investments in Kenya.

Could somebody please clarify this point?

Ngunyi Ngunjiri said...

Phil,

I hope that the ODM brigade is serious about the fight on corruption. It is clear that The Baks has to be seriously censured in a language that he can understand-more or less political consequences.

The larger problem at hand, impunity, should be fought by all, and if RAO is willing to do it, then by all means I shall support him and his quest.

We(as Kenyans)should learn a lesson from this-Power corrupts. We, as a matter of urgency, need to curtail executive powers, or at the very least devolve the powers to parliament.

BTW, I can see this replaying come 2012.

Or what do you think?

Msema Kweli said...

Crazy things - FRAUD, STEALING and DECEPTION - are happening in Kenya from certain members of a certain tribe (the Mt Kenya one). I just thought I'd post this observation here(and as you read it, remember what a certain tribe tries to FALSELY portray itself as industrious, enterprising and hardworking - superior to other Kenyan tribes. A big load of NONSENSE)

HERE IS MY OBSERVATION:

I've read some fascinating books about the concept of "self-deception", and I've come to
realize that the Mt Kenya fellows have an amazing capacity
for not seeing what's there... to the point where it can be very bad for them.

Like I just said, they often ARGUE about things that are OBVIOUS to others - like whether the Dec '07 elections were STOLEN or not, which makes it even
worse.

This "crazy mechanism" is, of course, a "survival" mechanism that falsely "helps" them to weed out all of the "scary" information (eg any mention of Raila) that's coming in through their senses at any given time, it usually goes overboard and prevents them from seeing TRUTHFUL information

Next Point: A lot of their cultural and social programming is "off-base" to a large degree e.g, their core values of FRAUD, DECEPTION and STEALING which
causes them to see things and interpret things incorrectly e.g that a Luo is not fit to be President of Kenya.

Finally, they don't like to change their outdated beliefs about things. They don't like to admit that they might be wrong in the first place, and feel unstable or insecure when they realize that a "fundamental truth" they have held all their lives is INCORRECT.

PS: For those of you who might think that I am saying the above because I am a Luo, I am not. I am a Kenyan who happens to come from western province.

Anonymous said...

On June 5 2008, Phil posted an article "Raila Enters Global Political Arena in Style" in reference to his appearance to World Economic Forum in Cape Town, South Africa. Well, President Kibaki is in Egypt to attend the 11th Ordinary Session of the Summit of African Heads of State and Government. No-one is talking about it here; selective journalism or just another prove Kumekucha is for Raila worshippers only?

Anonymous said...

Chris: So much for your blind winger. But hey "maybe" it's part of this government style. Shine the light on someone, give plenty of media coverage, caress some emotions all the while something else is becoming the blind winger. U can bet on one thing, something else is being done and other issues will continue being ignored. Just out of curiosity, do u think it's a ploy that the issue of amnesty has taken a backside to a freaking hotel?!

Marianne Briner said...

Just in case, certain people feel that I should not write here anything regarding Kenya - before sending your comments hare, please write to me directly.

So, just in case you have any questions regarding Robert Ouko, Moi and also JK: you can easily do it - without bothering Kumekuchans with your ever tiring hate comments.

Just write to mariannebriner@hotmail.com

Phil said...

Anonymous@3.32AM – I am not in any way whatsoever, obligated to name the government official you purport visited a prostitute in Oslo. It would be much more useful for your time and ours if you direct your enquiries to the owners of the site you read that information. I take great exception in your demands that I should name a person who is adversely mentioned at a site that is completely independent of this one.

Ngunyi Ngunjiri@3.53AM – I agree with your comments. I have no reason to doubt the resolve of ODM to fight high level corruption. Like I said in my previous comments, if this had happened in the previous regime, you can be sure it would have gone without much ado. What Kimunya underestimated or failed to note is that this is now a Grand Coalition Government in which ODM is an equal partner and the message Kibaki has been given is; its either we are out of this government and back to square one; or you sack and have these criminals arrested and charged in court. Meanwhile the hotel, it seems, is GONE forever and does not belong to Kenya anymore! How sad!

Anonymous@5.14 – Please note during the same time I posted that article you refer to, Kibaki was in Japan for a heads of state meeting and I did not report that. The omission is intentional. I had my reasons for posting that article on Raila. If I were to draw a comparison in the official performances of Mzee Kibaki with those of Captain Raila, the duly erected president would be put to shame. In case you are not aware, I did not vote for Kibaki in 2007 and do NOT accept that he is my president. He forced himself upon this nation through deception, fraud and state sponsored terrorism. I can only but write articles on the person I voted for and I believe won the presidency in 2007 and that is Raila Odinga.

Sio kwa ubaya lakini, I voted for Kibaki in 2002, and the betrayal that followed his swearing in then left a very bitter after-taste in my mouth that has refused to go despite many mouthwashes. Kibaki's actions and inactions are well recorded in history and I need not mention them here.

With all due respect,I have a suggestion for you and all those who want to read pro-Kibaki articles. Why don’t you ask the many ‘prominent and intelligent’ Kibaki supporters here at this blog to file reports on his performances in Egypt and elsewhere and them published here? They have equal publishing rights too. OR better still, why don’t you log on to the state house website and read despatches filed by the PPS from Egypt. You can also try the PNU spokesman’s website that is to be found at the same link as the government spokesman, or the national broadcaster KBC. I am sorry to say but I find it difficult to pinpoint anything positively newsworthy about Kibaki’s presidency – so far.

Anonymous said...

Well here we go again anglo leasing 2 and 3 coming up

Thanks

Phil said...

PS

Anon@5.14am

Yes indeed - "Raila Enters Global Political Arena in Style"....that was then. He is now putting the so called African statesmen like Mbeki, Museveni and their ilk to shame over the EYESORE that is Zimbabwe.

FYI - Kibaki ENTERED the gobal political arena in the 1960s and he is still straddling the government system to date. I leave you to judge whether his input during this time has benefited kenya or put us deeper into a hole. OMG! Wacha tu.

Anonymous said...

Phil - please don't be a coward - if it was an ODM-Official who visited that prostitute in Oslo, dont protect him. The truth will come out anyway.

So why are you reacting like that?

Maybe, because this man caught in Oslo is one of 'yours'?

Just remember: All men (and women) are only human.

Didn't you know this? You should ....

Just remember your visits to K-Street a short while ago.

Nyakamlago said...

Anon @5.14... if you have nothing to say, please spare us. Do you see any media house giving the thief-in-chief coverage? Wake up! I really feel sorry for the likes of you who are feeling left out by the local and international media... no mention of kibs since the RELUCTANT signing of the agreement. Na bado!

Anonymous said...

Phil, first I am not Anon 5:14 but I would like to make it clear to you, Kibaki did not force himself to anyone. He was voted in by more than half of Kenyan electorate. If ODM tally was to be believed Kibaki won by 46% of the vote, so are you trying to tell us the votes for these people does not matter, the only votes that matters is for Raila?

I would like you to tell us plainly here how Kibaki rigged the vote. No bullshits, no rumours, no lies just facts.

FYI, Raila entered politics in 1970s and he has always been a bridesmaid and never a bride. Do you ever ask yourself why?
I will give you the answer when you tell us how Kibaki rigged the election.

Marianne Briner said...

Phil - please don't feel like having to defend the new course Kenya is going - or better - struggling to go.

Because you - like all of us - know that it will not be easy to follow this new road which will lead Kenya and Kenyans into a - hopefully - more successful future.

But you - and all Kumekuchans and all Kenyans looking for a change - also know that although the road could be 'bumpy' sometimes, it is worth taking the risk.

Because we all know that we have no other choice if we - and please allow me to use this word, at least for once - we have to find a way to overcome the past.

The past which meant killing those who could speak, to silence those who could talk..... let their suffering for all of us not have been in vain.

And let us join in the fight to disclose the names of those responsible. Let us join - all of us - to call that justice finally will prevail.

Kenyans and Kenya have suffered enough. It is time - finally - to call for an end. The looting of the country has to stop, once and for all.

Make people like Mutula Kilonzo, James Orengo and others who know the 'hidden' secrets of the past open their mouth.

If they are serious about a change, about their campaign for a better Kenya - let them tell us all they know.

Don't allow them to spare anybody.

This is the campaign I want - or better: I dream of - all Kumekuchans should engage in.

Am I just dreaming? I hope - no I am sure - I am not.....

MB

Anonymous said...

Phil, If Raila did not defect from KANU to Narc in 2002, Moi would have made him the Prime Minister serving alongside Uhuru Kenya as the president. Bad choices he had made in years have costed him the residency at the house of the hill.

Bryo said...

Isn't this Grand Coalition good for the country in terms of accountability? Now, Ministers are speaking out against corruptions in the higher echelons. The opposition would have made some noise. The media would get bored with the story and life would continue. I don't see that happening this time. Methinks this saga will be a lesson to all those given to,or indeed entertaining any thoughts on Grand Larceny of public resources. They know they will be whipped by the same Nyaunyos out to get Kimunya.
Further from the ODM/PNU debate, this is a great development for the nation in terms of standing up for accountability and transparency in government.

Marianne Briner said...

Phil - there is a lot to say about Raila Odinga - positive and negative - but in one point I could agree with you:

In whatever Raila Odinga did or tried to do, it was because be had Kenya and Kenyans at his mind.

Although in my opinion - and please forgive me for saying this - Raila made a lof of mistakes.

First he had to struggle with the overwhelming figure of his father - he then had to overcome his imprisonment and the feeling that his family had to survive without him.

This is why I even could forgive him to have fallen into the trap which Moi laid out for him afterwards - I could also forgive him to try to taste the sweetness of honey, i.e. making a fortune when Moi offered him the Molasses Plant and the business for Spectre for the Gas Cylinders on a platter - and the political position of becoming a Minister in his (Moi's) Cabinet.

But the way I see it, all this is past now.

Raila Odinga has matured and he finally has outgrown his father's 'footsteps' - in other words: Raila Odinga has finally found out what his father had been fighting for. And now Raila Odinga has made it his own cause:

The future of Kenya and its people. The future not only for himself but for all generations to come.

The husband and father (and grandfather) Raila Odinga has learned what his own father tried to teach him all those years ago:

It is the future of your children and grandchildren you are responsible to take care of. This is what it is all about - nothing else and nothing less.

And I think, this is what Raila Odinga has learned and has in mind from now on.

I hope ........

MB

Mwarang'ethe said...

MB has said:

Make people like Mutula Kilonzo, James Orengo and others who know the 'hidden' secrets of the past open their mouth.

Our comment:

Most Kenyans do know enough about Mutula Kilonzo. Thus, they can make their judgments.

You have also referred to Orengo two times and the 'secrets he knows.'

Two questions follow from the above:

(a) How do you suggest we make them 'open their mouths'?

(b) You have referred to Orengo two times now. However, you have enlightened no one in the process.

Why don't you say what he has done? Otherwise, it makes no sense to keep on referring to his name, while not educating us.

Anonymous said...

someone lamented why the Kenyan DULY ELECTED is not being covered in the press in Egypt.

Loo, The PM is Grabbing headlines all the way from Nairobi!

Kenya urges AU to suspend Mugabe- BBC

African leaders are discussing what position to take on Zimbabwe
Kenyan PM Raila Odinga has urged the African Union to suspend Robert Mugabe from the bloc until he allows free and fair elections in Zimbabwe.

The situation in Zimbabwe, where Mr Mugabe was sworn in again as president on Sunday, has overshadowed a key summit of African leaders in Egypt.

African observers said the vote had been undermined by pre-poll violence.

Correspondents say the AU's response to the Zimbabwe crisis will be a major test of the bloc's effectiveness.

Speaking to reporters in Nairobi, Mr Odinga said: "They should suspend him and send peace forces to Zimbabwe to ensure free and fair elections."

Mr Odinga, a vocal critic of Mr Mugabe, says the AU would set a dangerous precedent by accepting him as "a duly elected president".

The UN has urged African leaders to try to negotiate a solution to the crisis.

Mr Mugabe claimed a landslide victory as the sole candidate in the presidential election re-run after the leader of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC), Morgan Tsvangirai, withdrew.

The South African presidency said it would consider reports from election observers together with other members of the Southern African Development Community (Sadc) before adopting a unified position regarding the result.

Anonymous said...

Kimunya got a good deal for Kenyans

According to the Nairobi Stock Exchange, TPS Eastern Africa had a market value of KSh 7.62bn as as 27/6/08. And according to the 2007 annual report of the company, it owned 11 hotels and lodges in East Africa and had an equity of KSh 3.68 billion and assets of KSh 6.78 billion as at 31/12/07.

http://www.serenahotels.com/news.asp?tri=archives

The hotels and lodges it owns in Kenya are Nairobi Serena, Serena Beach, Amboseli Serena, Samburu Serena, Mara Serena, and Kilaguni Serena. In Tanzania, it owns Kirawira Luxury Tented Camp, Lake Manyara Serena, Serengeti Serena, Ngorongoro Serena, and Zanzibar Serena.

So how can the Grand Regency Hotel be worth KSh 7-7.5 billion as claimed by some politicians and the press and yet it's only one hotel? The Libyans definitely overpaid for it. They should have spent the KSh 2.9 billion on TPS Eastern Africa shares but I guess they're flashy with oil dollars. Kimunya got a good deal for Kenyans but is hated for his success.

Missbamba said...

Thanks Kumekucha for the insights that you give.It is great to expose these Kibaki folks for who they are. Kimunya is just but a tip of the icebag. And this is what ODM supporters have been saying.We don't support RAO because he is luo but rather because of the intergrity that he and his team bring to the job.
Kibaki has failed the country again and again but yet PNU supporters blinded by sheer deeply ingrained tribalism support him and his ilk.It is unfortunate but times are changing. The rest of Kenya is awake and they say that no one can stand in the way of change - when its time has come

Anonymous said...

to anon 8:16pm

since when do president moi's promises and words ever fulfilled?

how many politicians (e.g. kibaki, saitoti, nyachae, mudavadi, etc) did moi waste with promises that he never fuilfilled.

what didnt happen can never be said to be "could have happened".

what we know is that once moi was leaving office, he would have no power to make anybody anyhting let alone a PM.

or you think we would be fools to believe that Uhuru would not have pulled the same political betrayal like kibaki and his mt. kenya mafia?

the kikuyus and lies, conning and deception cant help it. iko kwa damu.

Wanjiku Unlimited said...

Now Orengo says the Grand Regency was sold for 1.8 Billion. So it's 2.9 Billion from Kimuya to the media and the public, 1.8 Billion in the official documents??

Marianne Briner said...

The matter becomes worse and worse - all these figures mean nothing since they are only meant to dilude or better change attention -

This is worse than what has happened during Moi's times.

What a shame.

And as I said before, Pattni never really paid for the Hotel - he just covered as a proxy for Moi - and worse: Mutula Kilonzo knows it and now he tries to wash his hands cleaning himself from all the dirty and deadly deals he was involved with in the past.

It is Mutula Kilonzo you should chase - because it's him who can tell you all the secrets.

Dont' let him off the hook.....because if you do, Kenya will continue being in the hands of these criminals of the past with Mutula having been their 'lawyer', i.e. arranging the deals which allowed them to loot the country.

MB

Anonymous said...

Wanjiku

Whats your source, could you kindly publish for those of us in diaspora who are keenly following this shameful saga

Thanks

Anonymous said...

HERE IS THE PLAN OF MASS PROTESTS BY mp'S CALLING ON ALL KENYANS TO JOIN IN- i APPLAUD THEM- WE AS KENYANS MUST MOVE FAST BEFORE THEY HIDE AGAIN-

RAILA IS LETTING US DOWN WHAT IS HIS PROBLEM??WHAT COMMITTEE?? DIDN'T OKEMO'S COMMITTEE FAIL TO STOP HIM?? HE KIMUNYA AND CRONIES SOLD IT UNDER THIS COMMITTEE'S NOISE AND REFUSED TO APPEAR TO ANSWER CHARGES??

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFij4C6eXwo

Anonymous said...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFij4C6eXwo

Anonymous said...

Kumekucha can you post this- so that the kenyans on ground can watch and join in the protest march-
kibaki if you are listening - i do not expect you to send your killer police to shoot innocent kenyans protesting like last time!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFij4C6eXwo

Anonymous said...

Wanjiku Unlimited I invite you to join our march and all other kenyans who don't just piga domo on kumekucha and if you are abroad do encourage your relatives in kenya to join in- it is not only the grand regency we are fighting for sold in a shady deal to Libya it is also the other deals that Libya and countried like China signed on between 2002-2007

It is said that he signed other deals with Kibaki last year. These include:

Kenya Refinery (although an Indian Company had won the tender)

East African Marine Cable

Kenya Pipeline Eldoret-Kampala

The new LPG Handling and Storage Facilities in Mombasa

Kenya Petroleum Refineries etc.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tFij4C6eXwo

Anonymous said...

Mt. Elgon Forest soon to Haunt all Kenyans- discovery of mass graves- who did it???army ?? police?? WHO???

Anonymous said...

1)KAZI IENDELEE
..meaning stealing should continue.


2)6% Growth
.... means: Grand corruption to make Kibaki 3billion, Kimunnyua 2billion, Prof Ndungu 2bill, Ringera 2 billion, etc richer p.a.. The whole Mt Kenya region will be 6% richer p.a.

3)A working nation
... means, if you can, steal during day time using your office. Otherwise rob at night. Be rich or die trying is the motto of Mt Kenya. No ethics, no morals when money is concerned.

This is why votes were stolen.

Kazi bure IENDELEE JAMENI.

Thuku wa Kieni

Anonymous said...

Libya paid 2.9bill but the real value is over 9 bill. Because of the bargain Kibaki made to the Libyans,
rumours say the Libyans have paid Kibaki 2 billion, Kimunyua 1 billion, Prof Ndungu 1 billion and Ringera 1 bill kshs. The Arabs have saved more than 3 billions.

Where are all these thugs coming from? Is it not self explanatory?

Wako pleaded to get even a quarter. They kicked his ass.

If we cant throw these Kikuyu Mafia from power as soon as possible, Kenya will be bankrupt by 2010.

Anonymous said...

Said like a true chris, your articles are always witty , fun and intellectual .I enjoyed every word of this post untill now for the first time i feel strongly persuaded to give in to this raw notes thing , it better be good, just keep oscar out of it!

Anonymous said...

Tell me why kimunya appeared in the presence of Raila at a press conference today , i hate to say it but i think Raial has been compromised, this is the guy he should avoid the most right now yet he had the guts to sit alongside him for a press conference.

Abass said...

Anon 10:33, the source is The Standard. Here is the link http://www.eastandard.net/

Anonymous said...

http://www.eastandard.net/columnists/?id=1143989270&cid=190

Why is Kimunya bent on toppling President Kibaki?

Published on June 29, 2008, 12:00 am


By Abdulahi Ahmednasir

There is a ‘mutiny’ within President Kibaki’s inner circle of trusted lieutenants that will test his resolve to crush the rebellion.

The rebellion is led by Finance Minister Amos Kimunya. Despite Kibaki’s known pronouncement in the fight against graft and the need to keep the Government clean, Kimunya seems to have defied the President.

Kimunya is leading a raging rebellion that is attempting to overthrow the ethos Kibaki built, his lifelong reputation and even his presidency.

The rebellion may have far reaching ramifications on both the leader of the rebellion, the lifespan of Kibaki’s administration and the historic legacy Kibaki wants to bequeath. In any regimented regime, defying the order of a superior and leading an uprising is a treasonable offence.

However, at times the leader tacitly instigates the rebellion or blesses it so as to force the hands of any pretender to the throne or test the loyalty of his lieutenants. So is Kimunya’s rebellion State managed or is it a mutiny in the classical sense?

The Finance Minister is embroiled in two intriguing scandals. In both, he pontificates as if he is the paragon of virtues, while dismissing his critics as a bunch of ignoramus miscreants.

The arrogance and disdain he manifests in discharging the public duty he is privileged to have is quite astounding.

In the first one, when this column exclusively revealed two months ago that Grand Regency Hotel had been sold to a Libyan company, the minister went ballistic.

He ranted and revved that nothing of the sort happened. He facetiously averred that all those who claim that the hotel has been sold must have "heard it in a bar or a rumour mill".

He assured Kenyans that the hotel will only be sold in an open and transparent manner.

Two months later, and with his tail between his legs, the minister humiliatingly now admits that he lied to the country and breached public trust.

He has literally been caught with his pants down. He cuts an object of real pity and the bubble is busted.

The second scandal the minister is fire fighting involves De le Rue and the saga of printing currency notes. De le Rue and the printing of currency have a long secret and controversial association.

For many years, De le Rue had a monopoly in printing currency. The contract that allowed it to exclusively print money for ten years was widely acknowledged to be lopsided and unfair. It was signed in December 2002 a few days before President Moi’s second term ended.

Then Finance Minister David Mwiraria cancelled the same and subjected the currency printing to a competitive bidding. Many reputable companies took part in the bid. De Le Rue won the bid. It did so by drastically reducing the printing charges and the contract drawn between the parties was this time favourable saving the country billions of shillings.

De Le Rue saga

Kimunya, in unexplained circumstances, has ordered the Central Bank to shelf the favourable contract, waived its right against De Le Rue’s breach and/or refusal to print the new generation notes and strangely allowed De Le Rue to continue printing the old notes at the rate which it contracted to charge printing the new generation notes.

In the process the Government will loss billions of shillings. De Le Rue will save billions and…

The two scandals raise scary scenarios. First, there is a feeling that the Treasury is forcefully reasserting itself as the epicentre of corruption.

Ninety per cent of corrupt deals are usually cooked at the Treasury. Kibaki, despite his previous efforts and pronouncements on graft, seems either to have lost control of the affairs of the Treasury, is completely unaware of the on-goings there or is part of the eminent chefs at work.

It is inconceivable that President Kibaki could give the go-a-head to the clandestine sale of the Grand Regency Hotel and the currency printing scandal.

There are many scandals ministers and senior civil servants pull right under the nose of the President.

In such instances Kenyans rightly give the President the benefit of doubt.

However, it is entirely another proposition, when the President is informed of a scandal, knows that billions are lost, understands the cost benefit analysis of corruption and fails to act.

In such an instance, Kenyans are entirely correct to make their own deductions that such corruption has full presidential blessings.

Since the formation of the Grand Coalition Government, incidents of grand corruption highlighted by the media relate entirely to individuals close to Kibaki.

The President’s men have put their hands in every till that makes the round.

This will have two profound political effects on Kibaki’s presidency.

First, due to the high levels or incidents of corruption, the regime may soon be written off as being synonymous with grand corruption. The tipping point to make that pronouncement may be hastened by the two incidents the Treasury is involved in.

Second, these incidents are having corrosive effects on Kibaki’s prestige vis-‡-vis Raila as the Prime Minister. The more the President’s men are involved in graft and the more the Prime Minister and his ‘alternative government’ will be seen in good light and the more the loyalty and esteem of the citizenry shifts to the PM.

President Kibaki must act, and act soon to crush Kimunya’s mutiny against his pledge to fight corruption.

—The writer (ahmednasir@ahmedabdi.com) is a lawyer and former Law Society of Kenya chairman.

Anonymous said...

Karua an open book to voters on ethnicity
Published on June 30, 2008, 12:00 am
http://www.eastandard.net/letters/?id=1143989358&cid=17

Martha Karua has distinguished herself as a shrewd politician.

Not long after taking over Narc-Kenya, her intended vehicle to the presidency in 2012, the Justice Minister was quoted in the Press as appealing to voters to see her as an individual and not a Kikuyu. But if you are short in height, you cannot convince anyone to regard you as tall. This is exactly what Karua is trying to do.

It is through her actions, utterances, what she stands for and leadership qualities, among other factors, that people will judge her. It is, therefore, unnecessary for her to ask voters to view her in a certain perspective.

It is very easy for people to tell whether Karua stands for her ethnic community or for the nation. It is like telling between day and night.

It is too late in the day for her to try and convince us to see her in a different light.


James O Kihali,

Bungoma

Anonymous said...

Grand Regency.Very sad indeed

Now Bring Safaricom and the fake Kimunya Budget sacandal now


New twist in hotel saga

Published on July 1, 2008, 12:00 am


By Standard Team

The Grand Regency Hotel sale saga took a new twist as it emerged that the hotel changed hands at Sh1.85 billion and not Sh2.9 billion as claimed by the beleaguered Finance Minister Amos Kimunya.

The Minister for Lands James Orengo made the revelations late at a news conference, even as Prime Minister Raila Odinga and Kimunya, who is at the centre of the storm over the controversial sale of the hotel, remained locked up in a meeting at Treasury building in Nairobi.


The directors of Libyan Arab African Investments that bought the hotel, holder of Passport No 004428, holder of ID Card No 6104260, holder of Passport No 298071 and CBK Governor Njuguna Ndung’u who witnessed the sale agreement.

Orengo made the revelation against a backdrop of a flurry of activities at the Grand Regency Hotel as the new owners scrambled to formally take over the hotel. The hotel managers were kept busy the entire day and late into the night as they engaged in stocktaking.

Orengo, who first blew the whistle over the secret sale, opened a new dimension by claiming that the firm that bought the hotel is Kenyan.

Documents released last night by Orengo show that Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) sold the land and building to a locally registered company, Libyan Arab African Investments Company Kenya Limited.

Unmasked

Addressing a press conference at Ardhi House, Orengo also released pictures of the company directors one of whom is a well-known local contractor and has previously been involved in shady deals.


Attorney-General Amos Wako (centre) with Law Society of Kenya Chairman Okong’o Omogeni (left) and LSK Council member Evans Monari head to the AG’S boardroom on Monday. Picture by Collins Kweyu

The directors — whose names were not appended — had their Identification and Passport Numbers listed as 6104260, 298071 and 001428.

Orengo said it was clear from the documents that the deal was not between the Government of Kenya and the Libyan Government.

The minister said the company was incorporated and registered in Kenya. "Two characters are in the letters of transfer are indeed Kenyans," said Orengo.

The minister also revealed in the registration of title, a registrar at the Lands office — a Mr Mulee — changed the sum of figure from Sh2.5 billion to Sh1.85 billion without endorsing the changes.

Interestingly, one firm of advocates handled the sale transaction for both Central Bank of Kenya and the Libya Arab African Investment Company Kenya Limited.

Orengo said the firm of Wetangula, Adan, Makokha and Company Advocates were the same for the CBK and the new owners.

He stated that Attorney General would have been the one to act on behalf of the CBK (read Government) and not a private firm.

In the documents the Libyan Arab African Investment Company Kenya Limited has its registered office in Nairobi at P O Box 10902-00400.

The transfer was effected on June 20th this year and was witnessed by the CBK Governor Prof Njuguna Ndungu.

New owners start work

The hotel’s new owners officially installed a new Libyan financial controller, Mr Cairo Makhzoun Gilani and a Ugandan Chief Engineer, Mr John Kubarigire who supervised the stock taking exercise of all the hotel’s assets.

The new financial manager had visited a local bank earlier in the day for details on the hotel’s financial position.

The take-over and the stock taking was being executed in a hurry against fears that the Lands Minister would cancel the deal and revert the hotel to Kenyans.

The new managers walked into the hotel in the morning, minutes after the workers were hurriedly told that new directors would be coming to the hotel, causing anxiety among the members of staff. To outsiders and visitors, the entry of the new managers went unnoticed.

Security Intelligence sources told the Standard that the formal hand-over was to take place at around midnight last night.

"We are informed the handover ceremony will take place tonight (lastnight) but I do not think they have invited the media," said a security source that sought anonymity.

The hurried hand-over was being done against the backdrop of a cabinet sub-committee convened by Raila and which plans to grill Kimunya on the sale that has had the entire country focussed on the matter.

The handover was also done on the eve of planned demonstrations by a section of MPs who plan to hold a protest march to register their displeasure at the controversial sale.

Police bar demo

Their attempt to hand over an application to the police at Central Police Station was snubbed and told the face the demo will not be allowed.

Attorney General Amos Wako also met with members of the Law Society of Kenya after which he demanded from Kimunya for all documents on the sale of the hotel.

He said he needed to study the controversial sale to be able to give a concrete way forward on the same.

The chief Government advisor who was not party to the signing of the sale said he would advise Government accordingly on the action to be taken on the sale of the hotel that has put the Finance minister on the spot.

He at the same time reiterated that businessmen Kamlesh Pattni has not been granted pardon and his court cases are still on track.

"The issue is being handled now by the Prime minister Raila Odinga. I assure you after receiving all the documents on the sale I will then tell you the action to take. I do not want to injure the advocate client confidentiality," he said.

He said full details would emerge at today’s meeting of the cabinet sub-committee, where the directors of the said company will be revealed.

Impunity

Former Trade minister Mukhisa Kituyi also stepped into the raging saga saying the sale was an unfortunate statement of impunity by Kimunya.

He called for a revocation of the sale and the property returned to the public.

North Imenti MP Gitobu Imanyara who plans to sponsor a censure motion against Kimunya in Parliament Tuesday afternoon said the matter forms top agenda when the house convenes this afternoon

Imanyara said he has already drafted the requisite motion and held discussions with the two chief whips, Mr George Thuo and Mr Jakoyo Midiyo over the matter.

Imanyara said that they will move a motion of no confidence in Kimunya as Finance Minister and added that they have the support of Ministers, Assistant minister and backbenchers.

"We will not allow him to continue enjoying the status of a Finance Minister since he lied to Parliament over the sale of the hotel,’’ Imanyara said.









--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
COMMENTS 1. On Monday June 30, 2008, 21:19 PM , Ongeri O., United States wrote:
If Kenyans can over subscribe in trying to buy safaricom, why did the Government deny the public the opportunity to buy the Grand Regency? Hon. Kimunya and company must have forgotten or under estimated public emotions invested in Goldenberg and the Grand Regency. Hon. Kimunya promised Kenyans that there won’t be any scandals under his watch at the treasury – what happened? Why the double talk, spin and lies and then admission? For generations to come, the hotel will be seen as a monument of theft within Government by two successful administrations. How sad!!!

Anonymous said...

I was worried that Kenya did not have an opposition after the coalition agreement.

However, Orengo's conduct has given me hope. Thank you Mr. Orengo for blowing the whistle on Kimunya and his cronies.

Daniel Waweru said...

So how can the Grand Regency Hotel be worth KSh 7-7.5 billion as claimed by some politicians and the press and yet it's only one hotel? The Libyans definitely overpaid for it.

It's situated on rpime land in the city centre; it;s unlikely that the rate of appreciation of land in the city centre is below the rate of appreciation outside the city centre. Since land prices have roughly doubled since the GRH was assessed at approximately KES 2B, there's no difficulty seeing how it could be that the hotel is now worth at least KES 6B if not a lot more.

But in any case, the fact that Kimunya failed to obtain the best price for the hotel is not the key thing that is wrong. The sale was done in an opaque, shady, and quite probably illegal way. Since the GRH is (or was) a very valuable public asset that's cause for serious concern. The flack that Kimunya is getting is entirely deserved.

Anonymous said...

To Daniel Waweru

Remember that one of the the 11 hotels and lodges owned by TPS Eastern Africa is Nairobi Serena which is practically in the CBD yet the stockmarket value of TPS Eastern Africa is around KSh 7.62bn (refer a Tuesday Nation). Apart from the Nairobi Serena being practically in the CBD, visitors prefer it to the Grand Regency because of its gardens, parking space, serenity, and management. When international bigshots like Condi Rice and Annan are in town, where do they stay?

The hotels and lodges TPS Eastern Africa owns in Kenya are Nairobi Serena, Serena Beach, Amboseli Serena, Samburu Serena, Mara Serena, and Kilaguni Serena. In Tanzania, it owns Kirawira Luxury Tented Camp, Lake Manyara Serena, Serengeti Serena, Ngorongoro Serena, and Zanzibar Serena. Please check out the 2007 annual report below.

http://www.serenahotels.com/company.htm

So how can the Grand Regency be worth KSh7-7.5bn as alleged by some politicians and the press when TPS Eastern Africa with 11 first-class hotels and lodges has a stockmarket value of around KSh 7.62bn, assets of KSh 6.78bn, and an equity of KSh 3.68bn? Be honest with me and tell me right now whether you'd prefer to buy Grand Regency shares at a KSh 7bn valuation or TPS Eastern Africa shares at a KSh 7.62bn valuation.

The reason why the average Kenyan will never be a successful employer is because he/she is totally clueless at spotting and retaining hot talent like Amos Kimunya, the consummate dealmaker.

Anonymous said...

Phil,

I used to rely on you for info on odm, but i have now concluded you have no clue on what goes on there. Watch it, rao will do nothing about this deal. In fact I think he is either part of it or the libyans have blackmailed him. Dont you see how confident kimunya is? Just as with safaricom!

Mwarang'ethe said...

Mr/Ms/ Anonymous said @10:35 PM said:

To Daniel Waweru

Remember that one of the the 11 hotels and lodges owned by TPS Eastern Africa is Nairobi Serena which is practically in the CBD yet the stockmarket value of TPS Eastern Africa is around KSh 7.62bn

Our comments:

You know, there is something like kupigia mbuzi guitar? It is the same when arguing with people like thee.

Anonymous said...

Grand Regency is actually worth less than the KSh 1.8bn that Orengo claims it was bought for

TPS Eastern Africa has a market value of KSh 7.62bn (see Tuesday's Nation) and sales of KSh 3.91bn (see annual report below).

http://www.serenahotels.com/company.htm

That's a P/S ratio of 1.95. The Institute of Surveyors of Kenya (ISK) claims that Grand Regency is valued at KSh 4.5bn. If that's true, then the hotel would need to have annual sales of KSh 2.31bn in order to have the same P/S ratio as TPS Eastern Africa. According to Trip Advisor, the hotel has 194 rooms and average daily rates of $275 per room.

http://www.tripadvisor.com/Hotel_Review-g294207-d305105-Reviews-Grand_Regency_Hotel-Nairobi.html

Assuming that the hotel operates at 100% capacity, 365 days a year (wishful thinking even during the 2007 boom), it would have sales of KSh 1.26bn a year (275 x 65 x 194 x 365). Multiply that by the P/S ratio of TPS Eastern Africa and you have a valuation of KSh 2.46bn. So where does the ISK valuation of KSh 4.5-5bn or the valuation of KSh 7-7.5bn given by politicians and the press come from? The ISK is wrong just like the way they're wrong about a 3br flat in a nice Nairobi area being worth KSh 11m while the reality is that they're actually changing hands at KSh 6-6.5m.

Even if the hotel was bought at KSh 1.8bn as claimed by Orengo, that price assumed a 73.17% average capacity per annum which is still wishful thinking because of the post-election slump and the lousy customer reviews on the Internet (see above link).

Anonymous said...

People! , do not copy paste newspaper articcles in the comment section , everyone here has acess to the newspapers if you must then just post a link , let us engage in positive discussion not time wasting stale newspaper articles.

Anonymous said...

Marrianne Briner is trying to get attention she is missing from all those fiascos with African men, from Jeff to Biwott et all, and is horny for Phil.
Phil, take care.

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