Join our Telegram community for political discussions in real time with Kumekucha Chris. Click on the link below;

Monday, August 18, 2008

Kenya Wins Two Olympic Gold Medals

Kenya’s athletes have this afternoon set the Olympic athletic stadium in Beijing alight by winning two gold medals, one silver and one bronze.

First it was Brimin Kiprop Kipruto who won the men’s 3000 meters steeple-chase event while Richard Mateelong of Kenya grabbed the bronze after failing to catch-up with Frenchman Mahiedine Mekhissi-Benabbad who won the silver.

Olympic champion in Athens four years ago Ezekiel Kemboi faded to finish in seventh place.

A few moments later, the ‘Nandi Express’ Pamela Jelimo led her compatriot ‘Eldoret Express’ Janeth Jepkosgei Busienei in a one-two finish of the women’s 800 meters final winning the gold and silver medals respectively.

Kenya has won seven straight medals in the men's 3,000-meters steeple chase since the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, while this is the first time Kenyans are participating in the women’s 800 metres event final.

The win catapults Kenya to the highest ranking African nation position 17th on the medals standings with a total of seven medals two gold, three silver and two bronze.

Kenya's Brimin Kiprop Kipruto celebrates after winning the men's 3000-meter steeplechase final during the athletics competitions in the National Stadium at the Beijing 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

Kenya's gold medalist Brimin Kiprop Kipruto, left, silver medal winner Richard Kipkemboi Mateelong, right, and Ezekiel Kemboi run with Kenya's national flag after the men's 3000-meter steeplechase final in the National Stadium at the Beijing 2008

Kenya's Pamela Jelimo celebrates winning the gold in the women's 800-meter final during the athletics competitions in the National Stadium at the Beijing 2008 Olympics in Beijing.

Second-placed Janeth Jepkosgei Busienei (L) of Kenya celebrates with team-mate and winner Pamela Jelimo after their women's 800m final of the athletics competition in the National Stadium at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Games August 18, 2008.


Taabu said...

Eldoret Express and Kenya’s Moment of Glory
Wapi huyo Phelps tumuonyeshe?

At long last Kenya’s moment of glory is here and the GOLD MEDAL HAUL begins in earnest. In the last few hours Eldoret Express Pamela Jelimo has powered to a brilliant 800m victory to become the first Kenyan woman to win an Olympic title. Jelimo set the Bird’s Nest stadium in Beijing a light with a devastating pace to win in one minute 54.87 seconds. Janeth Jepkosgei added the sweet icing on the Kenyan cake by taking silver. Poor Maria Mutola. The hitherto invincible Maputo Express could only window shop by finishing sixth.

Hold your breath we are not done yet. Brand new unstoppable Nandi Express Brimin Kiprop Kipruto added Olympic gold to his world championship title by winning the men's 3000m steeplechase. And as if the tradition 1-2-3 was becoming our middle name in long distance running, compatriot Richard Kipkemboi Mateelong bagged the steeplechase’s bronze .

Michael Phelp may have been the winingest of all Olympians in water but these our own Kenyans have made history of sorts. Kipruto’s win ensured the 3000m steeplechase title has gone to a Kenyan at every Games since 1980. Mark you the last non-Kenyan to win the event (Poland's Bronislaw Malinowski) only managed the gold at the 1980 Moscow Games because Kenya boycotted the games. Just imagine the counterfactual what if.

As Beijing extravaganza comes to a close, we can afford the last and longest laughs all the way to the podium. Hard work pays and in athletic no shortcuts can take you anywhere. Congratulations to these gallant Kenyans for doing us proud. Hongera.

Anonymous said...

Go Kenya!!! Hope we can now "Michael Phelps" all those long distance races. I guess this are the times we should all say "Najuvunia kuwa Mkenya"!!!

JEFF said...


If there is one single unifier of Kenyans then it's sports. All the athletes become our heroes (and especially when they are winning). How can we translate this unity into our politics? In my own estimation our athletes are some of the few kenyans who have earned whatever they have through hard work and own effort. By this criteria alone they qualify to be our role models in society. But why has this not happened? Our role models are instead people of questionable character whose source of wealth is not clean. What is wrong with Kenya?

Hongera our athletes. You make us proud. Keep the Gold coming!

Anonymous said...

Am proud to be kenyan and kakenjin for that matter!!! congrats to all. i wonder how that woman slipped away to rip Ndereba her title??

Anonymous said...

I have never be prouder to be Kenyan than today. Go go the 'Expresses hard workers are here'

Mwawile Bi'Tok said...

People, Phil is simply reacting from intense exposure. Today he even denies being a Luo. Maajabu ya Musa. Now that Raila has ordered all Luo men to face the knife or die, Phil is trying to deflect things here by posting Olympic news that's been all over the TVs, Internet for many hours. He is trying to ensure no discussion on the 'cut' progresses.

And then, he jumps from nowhere trying to promote a kiosk on Kimathi street. Wacha hiyo upuzi. Last I heard, it is Luos who are predominantly struggling to speak with British/American accents. Phil, please stop your diversionary tactics.

I'm not saying that Luos are lousy lays but they are no better than anyone else. The power of the dick is an individual trait. No amount of fish, githeri or chicken will give you an automatic boost.

So if the PM is going to advice on the cut, he must also address wife inheritance, sex for fish and general ignorance around the shores of lake Victoria. It's about time millions of condoms were dropped from helicopters all over Nyanza. If you think I'm lying, please visit Russia hospital. Nobody cries for the dead here. It's normal.

Before I finish, I must address the number one killer of Luo men: Intergalactic False Pride. I say this because you can search the entire universe and fail to find a group of people who have chosen to tightly bind themselves with absolute falsehood. Here, the PM tries to unintelligently reduce the spread of HIV, as he does so, suddenly exposed Phil focuses on the improvable sexual prowess of Luo men. By doing so, Phil is directly encouraging his fellow tribes men to jump into bed severally to enjoy their prowess. He has no foresight to see that by cheating himself and his friends, he is going against what his hero is trying to preach.

Seriously, how can we help our brothers from the lake? How can we push the powerless Luo council of elders to discourage wife inheritance and encourage condom use? How about the 'one partner at a time' philosophy? Must every Luo, the Phil version, prove their prowess by marrying four wives and sleeping with widows and any woman with a round onion butt?

Phil, wacha hiyo false pride. Ati Kisumu is for Luos. The reality is that very few Luos own anything in Kisumu. Most are renters. Even the most popular drinking pubs (most prominent business in a town of drunkards and ohangla dancers) are co-owned and financed by non-Luos. Even the matatu business is Kisii operated.

Phil, Kisumu has it's owners.

Mwawile Bi'Tok said...

As for incest in the Kikuyu community, we all know it's prevalent. Especially in poor slum areas like Mathare, Dagoretti, Mukuru-ini etc. This appears to be accepted by those societies.

FACT: Kikuyu fathers sleeping with their daughters is not a big deal. That of uncles sleeping with poor nieces is almost embraced in places like Thika and Kiambu. I do not think it's cultural. I think it's really about money and power. Again, this is mostly within the poorest of the poor. Lastly, of all cultures in Kenya, this is the only one where 'virginity' is not revered.

Shiko-Msa said...

Kudos to our stars. May this open the floodgates for more medals in the remaining races.

Proud Kikuyu Woman said...

I'm almost sure I saw Catherine Ndereba win a silver at the marathon.
Jason Dunford also did us proud in the pool. Oh well, you missed all this.

Taabu said...

Mwawile Bi'Tok said, they have to prove their prowess by marrying four wives and sleeping with widows and any woman with a round onion butt?.......

Can somebody stop this man, my ribs are threatening to snap. Man you have away with your words. Only that you chose the wrong thread. Please repost in the thread before this one.

Phil, wacha hiyo false pride. Ati Kisumu is for Luos. The reality is that very few Luos own anything in Kisumu. Most are renters. Even the most popular drinking pubs (most prominent business in a town of drunkards and ohangla dancers) are co-owned and financed by non-Luos. Even the matatu business is Kisii operated.

Phil, Kisumu has it's owners.

10:03 AM


Taabu said...

Not so fast. Please just scroll down and jana Phil had a whole post on Catherine Ndereva. Why point the finger so fast and falsely accuse while it you have not read the post? Just scrol down it only jana ama click

Anonymous said...

Yes, Pamela won and it was fanatastic but why such poor spoken English? She was interviewed after the race and all you could from hear "actually, actually..."

kalamari said...

Go Kenya!! Go!! Our athletes have made us proud.

Mwawile..why come here to spoil the celebration party? Cant you see we are basking in pride here. Why unleash a tirade of tribalism concocted with malice and innuendo on a day when 'Kenya" means something.

Kwani Phil aliiba ngombe yako?

Taabu said...

Anon 10.53,
What is the beef with English? Last time I checked language WAS NOT part of the qualification, ama? Please spare us that bull. Would you say the same about Chinese athletes who CANNOT even say actually? We are celebrating victory on the track and not flawless English please.

enyambu said...

there is a clone at who is killing me. check it out when you wanna laugh lol

E-Cop said...

anon@11:10 please stop advertising CLONE site here, the original is still up and running providing strong foundation for copy cats to paste sweatlessly another man's sweat and build a name on popularity by proximity
Kenya is winning gold medals while you are promoting copy medals

Anonymous said...

taabu, its good to see you celebrating your fellow tribesmen after they earned a bad name as killers and ethnic cleansers.

Kwale said...

I would rather watch Brazilian women beach volley team than watch those Kalenjin warriors!

Anonymous said...

Mwasomething bitok,

You seem to know more about Luos than the luos themselves. How does a round onion butt look like?
You sound like a sore looser who is trying to massage his ego after a humiliating rejection by a luo woman - not surprising because you don't seem to measure up.
We wouldn't touch idiots like you even with millions as 'nyongesa'.

Proud Kikuyu Woman said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Proud Kikuyu Woman said...

Taabu, sorry, and thanks for pointing that out. I've been away from the blogosphere for a little while and just read today's post. I apologize.
Kenya hoiyee!

Anonymous said...


Raila reignites debate on youth held over poll violence

Published on 19/08/2008

By David Ohito

Prime Minister Raila Odinga kicked a fresh storm demanding the unconditional release of over 300 post-election violence suspects.

In a new twist, Raila called for an independent authority to investigate and prosecute cases related to the post-election violence.

Speaking at an international conference on Restorative Justice and National Humanitarian Law today, Raila said peace and justice go together and is crucial to the healing process.

"It is not about amnesty but about justice. The people must be released without conditions," Raila said.

"We are not calling for amnesty. The youths are not guilty. There is no evidence but just trumped-up charges against the innocent ODM supporters," Raila said.

"Amnesty presupposes guilt. There are two sides to the conflict. Security forces were following orders of the PNU as their masters but they also killed nearly half of those who died in the violence," Raila said.

He accused Party of National Unity (PNU) as being partisan and said the party controlled all instruments of coercion during the violence.

"The police are partisan in their arrests and cannot prosecute the suspects in this case. They are themselves suspects," Raila said.

"Those police officers should be similarly arrested and charges preferred against them." Raila charged.

While Government records peg the figure of the dead at 1,020, politicians have claimed about 1,500 people lost their lives.

Taabu said...

You didn't disappoint and true to character you would rather watch EXOTIC Brazilians playing beach volleyball. FYI they speak Portuguese and not SLANG. You know you are among the few coastals who cannot ask MWAVULI by his name in NBO instead you stick to BROLLY. You are more Brazilian bro than Kenyan and next time don't waste your valuable time cloning yourself as one, won't you?

Anonymous said...

Kwale it was very disappointing to read that demeaning thread from you. Were you not the one who was advertising yourself as authentic, unique and you now you are saying that you would rather watch some Brazilian women volley-ballers in skimpy dresses than your own country men and women? Shame on you!

Anonymous said...





Ex-ministers grapple with life out of power

Published on 19/08/2008

By Standard Team

Former Finance minister, Mr David Mwiraria, has 24-hour security at his home in Meru and bodyguards. Four of the officers who guard Mwiraria led by a corporal and three constables are assigned to guard the former minister’s rural home while a senior sergeant and a sergeant are still his bodyguards.

Two were his bodyguards even when he served in the Finance and Environment ministries.

Mwiraria still maintains his closeness to President Kibaki.

"He is still in close contact with the President. They still consult and meet even after mzee was defeated in last year’s General Election," said one of his allies.

hosted delegates

Though Mwiraria appears to have abandoned active politics, he is still handling Narc-Kenya and PNU affairs in North Imenti. He recently hosted a delegates meeting at his home.

The former minister who retreats from Nairobi to his rural home in Meru almost every weekend is an active member of the Karen Golf club where he plays when in Nairobi.

He concentrates on wheat farming in Timau Division, where he also keeps merino sheep and some dairy cows. He also practices horticulture and produces mangoes for export from his Mulika Farm in Meru North District.

Anonymous said...








Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

Now they are surely enjoying the presidency. Karua is now shamelessly courting votes from people she helped steal from.
Meanwhile, Kivuitu is trying to play innocent...

....ECK chairman Samuel Kivuitu told the Kriegler commission he was rushed to State House to GIVE presidential victory to Mwai Kibaki.

Kivuitu said he was shocked when he arrived at State House to find the stage set for the swearing-in minutes after he announced the results.

UrXlnc said...

kudos to the winners

this however is not right, these guys (managers and administrators) had months to prepare for these events,

i think a lot of good athletes are denied opportunity to represent Kenya

Anonymous said...

Anyone willing and able to join the league of the 'hardworking, rich and famous?'

FEELANGA FREE - Thieves are shaking off some of their loot before 'olengo' catches up with them.

Location: The Great Rift Valley
Latitude: -0.6000 Longitude: 36.000
Altitude: 8,700 feet (2,652 meters)
Time Zone: UTC+3


4,000 Acres of Land for Sale. The property lies on the gentle slopes along the crest of the Mau Escarpment to the west of The Great Rift Valley, an area of extremely high agricultural potential. This rich agricultural land is suitable for cereals, horticulture, floriculture, and a whole array of rain-fed agriculture and livestock farming.

Rainfall is 1,000mm per year. During the colonial days this ranch was exclusively reserved as part of the White Highlands and is the last property that is still maintained in this glory. It is found within what is classified as Ecological Zone Two giving it international recognition as an ecologically well preserved area of extremely high potential. It is one of the least polluted areas in the world. Indeed, just 30km away are the Mara Springs that are the source of the Nile.

Land Topography:

The vast ranch predominantly consists of undulating hills with gentle slopes that converge at the streams that bisect through it.

Vegetation found on the Ranch:

Currently the land is under large-scale cereal cultivation. However, certain sections have tracts of trees and shrubs. There is also small-scale cultivation of rain-fed horticultural products that thrive well in the rich soil. The land is adjacent to natural forest.

Wildlife Found on/near the Ranch:

The property is on the Mau Escarpment and borders the Mau Forest, which has an abundance of wildlife that would roam freely into the property from the world famous Maasai Mara Game Reserve. These include elephant, lion, cheetah, leopard, rhino, giraffe, hyena, buffalo, waterbuck and a host of others.

Birds Found in the Mau Narok Area:

Mau Narok is internationally recognized as an IBA (important bird area). The following birds can be found here either as resident or migratory; Moorland Francolin, Lesser Kestrel, Mountain Buzzard, Great Snipe, Montane Nightjar, Nyanza Swift, Hunter's Cisticola, Aberdare Cisticola, Brown Warbler, Tacazze Sunbird, Bronze Sunbird, Golden-winged Sunbird, Baglafecht Weaver, Jackson's Widowbird, Sharpe's Longclaw, Streaky Seedeater.


The property is a wet high altitude area, comparable to European highlands in summer; that enjoys substantial perennial rains and sunshine throughout the year. It is only 80km from the equator and therefore enjoys having equal day and night.

Brief History of the Land:

British settlers initially acquired the property in the early 40s and used it mainly for rearing sheep for wool. Ownership changed hands in the early 60s to German settlers who similarly used it for animal husbandry but also later introduced the lucrative large-scale cultivation of cereal. The government of Kenya purchased the ranch and later sold it to indigenous investors on basis of ability to preserve it 'as is' ecologically.

Natural and Artificial Water Bodies:

The ranch has two natural water springs and two streams that lazily meander through it. Four boreholes have been sunk strategically across the property.

Existing Structures:

An eight bed roomed colonial house in its original architectural form sits to one end of the property, flanked by domestic staff quarters. Other smaller structures of a semi-permanent nature also exist. An airstrip runs along one end. These structures however require refurbishment.

Neighboring Communities:

The Maasai, Kisii and Kikuyu communities live in this locality, presenting an enriched diversity of cultures and customs.


Distances from the ranch:

To Maasai Mara Game Reserve;

By helicopter; 12 minutes, by fixed wing; 7 minutes, by road; 30 minutes
An all weather road links The Ranch to the Maasai Mara Game Reserve.
This world famous game reserve is an attraction for its abundance in diverse wildlife. It is from here that the great wildebeest migration begins and ends. Hot air ballooning is very popular especially during the migration.

To Aberdare National Park;
By helicopter; 18 minutes, By fixed wing; 11 minutes, By road; 45 minutes
This is a densely forested area which is popular with wildlife for its perpetual green vegetation.

To Nairobi; (Capital city of Kenya and Commercial Capital for East & Central Africa)
By helicopter; 45 minutes, By fixed wing; 20 minutes, By road; 90 minutes
The capital city of the country. Kenyas main international airport - The Jomo Kenyatta International Airport is located here and so is Wilson Airport from where most local flights depart.

To Lake Naivasha;
By helicopter; 10 minutes, by fixed wing; 6 minutes, by road; 30 minutes

To Lake Nakuru;
By helicopter; 8 minutes, by fixed wing; 5 minutes, by road; 25 minutes

To Lake Elementaita;
By helicopter; 8 minutes, by fixed wing; 5 minutes, by road; 25 minutes
The Ranch is spectacularly surrounded by these three lakes that collectively have a rich diversity of birds and wildlife.

To Egerton University;
By helicopter; 5 minutes, by road; 20 minutes
This is a well known agricultural college with professionals equipped with expertise in agro-forestry, livestock and fisheries dating back to 1939. Their wealth of experience offers skilled manpower for professional and manual agri-related skills.

Potential Developments:

Sports and Recreational Industry:

The size, location and topography make this property the ideal site for a sporting ranch. This would accommodate a complete array of sporting activities including:

- 18 hole golf course.
- A safari rally / motor cross circuit.
- Polo and horse back riding.
- A myriad of indoor games.

As a high altitude training camp - the area makes this locality excellent for the mentoring and training of both amateur and professional sporting greats.

Hotel Industry:

Picture an African safari blended with a bit of modern day spice. Unlike the typical Las Vegas scene, a well-hidden nondescript gambler

Anonymous said...

The ODM's Concept of Democracy

My understanding of true democracy tells me that people should be given a free will to elect their leaders and in the event that their choices lose, then they should concede defeat, congratulate and embrace the winner and respect the choice of their opponents. Losing graciously not only earns you respect, it gets you more admiration.

Like I have said elsewhere, no one can really tell who won last year’s polls. That election was pretty much a split decision and it actually doesn’t make a lot of sense dwelling on it. This uncertainty has been compounded by the seeming incompetence of the Electoral Commission and the security forces.

Now because this is about grace and civility, I will not rub it upon the disciples of the ODM that they lost, or at least that some evidence suggests they did so fair and square. That, I will pass for now. I will, however, point out that the chief embarrassment was how they reacted to the announcement of the results by the body that is solely constitutionally mandated to announce the results.

The usual way of handling conflicts is through the discourse of the court. No one should buy the crap that the compromised nature of our court system stopped them from seeking justice there because this same party filed the highest number of parliamentary petitions by any one single party in the history of our multi-party electoral politics. Considering the ODM gave the handling of the parliamentary and local authority elections a clean bill of health, this high number of petitions not only points to a party acutely reluctant to concede defeat, it also shows an inexplicable level of double standards. No wonder they are doing absolutely nothing to bring sanity to the courts if they truly believe the courts dance to the whims of the executive. They are not only occupying a central position in government, they also control the legislature. Why the lull?

Come the by-elections. When the PNU coalition lost the Wajir seat against all reasonable expectations, their candidate hugged and congratulated the winner. He promised to do everything he could to help the elected opponent in his bid to make the constituency better. PNU and its partners, of course performed dismally in Emuhaya and Ainamoi and they accepted the verdict of the voter. The ODM’s reaction to the losses in Embakasi and Kipkelion, on the other hand, was not surprising. Their Embakasi candidate declared herself the winner and then proceeded to court. Kipkelion was blamed on negative ethnicity as if this was not ODM’s prime principle—as if this is not what keeps the party going.

Yesterday, we were treated to the same old defeatist antics once again. The same party marauders who stopped the tallying of votes in Kamukunji in December were at it again trying to intimidate everybody. The returning officer and the winning candidate were called all kinds of names. People threatened violence and were it not for the heavy police presence, there would have been serious bloodshed.

Which brings me to the questions; when are this party and its omnipotent caudillo ever going to lose a fair contest? When are they ever going to acknowledge the rationale behind competitive politics? Are they ever going to learn to respect the fact that their opponents can also get the better of them? Are they willing to upgrade their understanding of democracy?

My conclusion which is in actual fact a belief I have always held is that the ODM does not defend its members; it preys on their ignorance and vulnerability. It does not stand for democracy; it perverts democracy. It desires not to free its members from political bondage; it desires to imprison its members within its own fascist, unorthodox and utterly misplaced conception of democracy.

But then again, even Machiavelli would have appreciated all this!

copied from hakujakucha; you didn't miss this (goggle it for amazing uncorrupted analysis)

Anonymous said...


kikuyus=circumcised=aids free


no wonder carl max, molasses raila sonm had to face the knife before marrying shiro. the boy cried and urinated on himself for 2 weeks.

Anonymous said...


Kwale is entitled to prefer bazillians to kaleos(kenyans). Patriotism is false. No one chose to be born in a particular country and to therefore be proud of being kenyan(or whatever) is ridiculous. I highly doubt many kenyans, if they had the choice, would have chosen to be born in kenya (or africa for that matter).

Anonymous said...

For Jaluo's like Sam Okello, who shiver at the mention of circumcision...just JIK it!!!

peel of the smelly foreskin and pour conc jik and it will be sterilised.

Just JIK it with 'powerfoom' for uncircumcised luo's.

bwa ha ha ha...

can the ihii (uncut lads) in Kumekucha raise their hands uP!!!

Anonymous said...

seems every one has gone to hakujakucha...let me run there also

saomcol said...

Good win for Kenya but it's time for the AK management to start thinking seriously of the running of the competitive athletics affairs. Kenyans who watch news can remember Kipsiele Koech complaining about Ezekiel Kemboi which were never attended to by AK. After failing to win even a bronze medal at Beijing, we can now believe Koech about claims about Kemboi. Surely Kemboi used unsportsman tactics against Kipsiele at the qualifies!

Anonymous said...

A number of comments on circumcision...let me add my peni mbili.

Is circumcision an act of bravery or is it another fear-conquering activity just like being able to fearlessly walk in the dark?

I say this because my son was circumcised when he was just ONE day old-which is now common pratice. Should I go announcing to everyone how brave he is, or is he justified in jeering at his uncircumcised peers later in life?

Of course the motivation in doing it at this age is because one does not understand the concept of fear, and therefore it isn't a bog deal. If this was such unbearble pain, then I doubt any doctor would be willing to perform it on a baby.

For those that try to jeer at the uncircumcised. I think you ought to be 'proud' that you conqured your FEAR of the knife just like someone conqured their fear by immigrating to some foreign land, or by eating frog meat.

All the hype about circumcision was the opportunity to feast and nothing more.

Ok,all you 'brave' men can now eat me.

Anonymous said...

uncircumsed men have smaller dicks than the circumsed ones.

Anonymous said...

Raira, Kifukky et al should all go to Jommo Kenyatta International Airport and welcome our atheletes and sportsmen on their return trip. Ministry of Sports, where are you? Arrange this fete kabisa.

We should be ashamed that always, after these people lift up the banner of Kenya, and make Kenyan National anthem played at the international level. (Was anyone emotional as I was ...?), they are welcomed by only relas carrying calabashes of mursik.

Where are those state cars to transfer them from the airport to their destinations and give them a state banquet, coz they surely deserve it!


Anonymous said...

They can go to hell with their stupid medals. Bunch of bloodied murderers. Kenya can rot too while they are at it.

I have never hated being a Kenyan as I am now. simply disgusting.

Anonymous said...

Why don't you talk about gays in Kenya responsible for so much of HIV infection.
or you live in denial there are no gays in Kenya?
Well, we have few gay bloggers here like the likes of
Papa plus
... And maybe many others.
So you can imagine if we have that number of gays here, how many are they in the country.

Anonymous said...

Kenya: Struggling for peace

"My family perished from an election related incident but people were elected on that account have never come back and said this happened because of us," he says.

By Karen Allen
BBC News, Nairobi

When Raila Odinga and President Mwai Kibaki signed a peace deal on 27 February, ending Kenya's post-election violence, people took to the streets to celebrate.

The agreement, hammered out by Kofi Annan after weeks of political wrangling, paved the way for a grand coalition government. It was a breakthrough in a part of the world where traditionally winner takes all.

Kenya, of enormous strategic influence in the "war on terror", found itself under pressure from the international community to secure a deal that would quickly restore its status as one of Africa's most stable states.

Eventually the rivals relented and signed a deal that brought the country back from the brink of civil war.

Violence in Kenya sparked fears of a civil war

Six months on and the coalition is still intact, the western backers have sighed with relief but the fissures that fuelled the violence are still there.

Tens of thousands of displaced people are still in tented camps.

Others have been forced to return to their "homelands", chased away after the election because their grandparents were not born in the place they chose to farm.

This is one of the biggest challenges the new coalition government now faces.

Violence probe

"We are under pressure to behave like a coherent nation… but the truth is those issues remain very much unresolved," says political commentator Parselelo Kantai.

Commissions of enquiry have been established to examine the circumstances of the disputed election and the violence that quickly followed.

But many Kenyans have little faith that their recommendations will be adopted, given past experience of such tribunals.

Land, ethnicity and the distribution of power are key areas that Kenya's politicians ignore at their peril.

Around 600,000 people were displaced due to the unrest

Land lies at the heart of Kenya's historic grievances. Three-quarters of the population still lives in rural areas, many relying on what they grow to survive. But land is also about ethnic identity and ancestry.

Joseph Wanjama is a living example of that. He is among the many people chased away from the Rift Valley Town of Kericho back in January. He is Kikuyu - a member of President Kibaki's tribe. An entire community held responsible for an election widely seen as a fraud.

Mr Wanjama's home is now a tented camp in the town of Nakuru.

But he agreed to venture back for a few hours to Kericho - the place which he fled. It was not his ancestral heartland but he had made a life for himself there, employing dozens of people from outside his own tribe.

Within minutes of arriving in what is still a tense town, we find members of the rival Kalenjin community now occupying his business.

And the staff quarters where dozens of craftsmen once lived are now partially destroyed and being looked after by a Kalenjin friend.

"They tell us it isn't over yet," Mr Wanjama whispers. "If we come back, something bad will happen."

This is not paranoia, it is the aftershocks that follow when a country, once a model of peace, crosses the line.

Land reform

In many places communities are forbidden to return, their tormentors saying that only once amnesty is granted to those accused of post election crimes will real peace be restored.

Extra security has been put in place to try to entice communities back. But it is not working.

About 1,500 people died in clashes after December's presidential poll.

Many Kenyans harbour dreams of land reform.

There are huge expectations that a wholesale distribution of land may be in the pipeline - a dream nurtured by politicians at election time.

Managing such expectations will require courage and statesmanship on a massive scale.

For Prime Minister Odinga, it is time to deliver some hard truths.

"We need to be frank with our people," he said.

"What we need to come up [with is] a system whereby land is used as a means of production… it should not be used for speculative purposes. It's only that way that we will develop this country."

Land is one of the most fertile areas for corruption. Deeds are often sold to people for the same piece of land and in Kenya land has long been a form of political patronage. Reversing this will be like trying to turn a tanker around.

Proud people

Now more than ever before, Kenyans are craving more political engagement with their leaders - calling on them to take their messages of reconciliation to the field rather than remain in the comfort of the capital.

In Yamumbe camp for displaced people near the town of Eldoret, Rosemary Wambui is in charge of the cleaning rota. These are proud people and though they may be confined to tents, there are standards to be kept.

Yamumbe is a satellite camp, a little closer to the farm Ms Wambui was forced to leave six months ago. But she is exasperated by Kenya's politicians.

"They're already talking about 2012," she explodes.

That is the date for the next round of elections.

"They just want us to unite but how can we be reunited when they are divided over 2012."

There is a real fear that Kenya's leaders will take their eye off the ball, get distracted by political ambition rather than address the realities on the ground.

There was a lot of talk about "one Kenya" during the honeymoon period that followed the peace deal. A Kenya where you put your nationality first and your tribal loyalties last.

Bernard, a survivor's story

But Bernard Ndege paid a heavy price for practicing that principle. A member of the Luo community - Mr Odinga's group - he saw all of his eight children burnt to death when their house was set alight in the town of Naivasha.

It was clearly a reprisal attack for the thousands of Kikuyus who had been killed or displaced in the weeks before. Yet the bitter irony of Mr Ndege's story, is that he voted for someone from a different community in the parliamentary vote and a fellow tribesman in the presidential vote.

He has now been forced to retreat to the place he was born on the shores of Lake Victoria.

He is a lonely and isolated figure who would vote the same way again if there was an election tomorrow.

But he is angry that no politician has taken responsibility for what happened: violence promoted from the top with hate speech and cash, and executed at the grassroots to deadly effect.

"My family perished from an election related incident but people were elected on that account have never come back and said this happened because of us," he says.

Kenya is now going through a period of quiet self reflection. A vast coalition cabinet is trying to hold the country together in this transitional phase.

An emboldened parliament and press is now under pressure to hold the executive in check and deliver on one of the key promises - a new constitution by the middle of next year.

Kenya may be on a path towards restoring normality, but it is not yet out of the woods

UrXlnc said...

anon 9:45

thank you for that article. the annoying thing is that almost all findings are courtesy of a foreign correspondent for a foreign media house. when will we get objective and factual reporting from our own journalists and in real time, complete with comprehensive analysis or summary with pictorial evidence, i.e News we can believe to be as seen through the eyes of locals. we either have politically correct reporting i.e glossing over or hiding the truth or on the other extreme sensational journalism coupled with rumours where trivia is blown out of proportion as the media toys with public emotion/mood to generate revenue.

In the meantime anyone with an Olympic update

Anonymous said...



Genetic modification can't deliver a safe, secure future food supply. Here's why...

1. Failure to deliver

Despite the hype, genetic modification consistently fails to live up to industry claims. Only two GM traits have ever made it to market: herbicide resistance and BT toxin expression (see below). Other promises of genetic modification have failed to materialise. The much vaunted GM ‘golden rice’ – hailed as a cure to vitamin A deficiency – has never made it out of the laboratory, partly because in order to meet recommended levels of vitamin A intake, consumers would need to eat 12 bowls of the rice every day.1 In 2004, the Kenyan government admitted that Monsanto’s GM sweet potatoes were no more resistant to feathery mottle virus than ordinary strains, and in fact produced lower yields.2 And in January 2008, news that scientists had modified a carrot to cure osteoporosis by providing calcium had to be weighed against the fact that you would need to eat 1.6 kilograms of these vegetables each day to meet your recommended calcium intake.3

2. Costing the Earth

GM crops are costing farmers and governments more money than they are making. In 2003, a report by the Soil Association estimated the cost to the US economy of GM crops at around $12 billion (£6 billion) since 1999, on account of inflated farm subsidies, loss of export orders and various seed recalls.4 A study in Iowa found that GM soyabeans required all the same costs as conventional farming but, because they produced lower yields (see below), the farmers ended up making no profit at all.5 In India, an independent study found that BT cotton crops were costing farmers 10 per cent more than non-BT variants and bringing in 40 per cent lower profits.6 Between 2001 and 2005, more than 32,000 Indian farmers committed suicide, most as a result of mounting debts caused by inadequate crops.7

3. Contamination and gene escape

No matter how hard you try, you can never be sure that what you are eating is GM-free. In a recent article, the New Scientist admitted that contamination and cross-fertilisation between GM and non-GM crops ‘has happened on many occasions already’.8 In late 2007, US company Scotts Miracle-Gro was fined $500,000 by the US Department of Agriculture when genetic material from a new golf-course grass Scotts had been testing was found in native grasses as far as 13 miles away from the test sites, apparently released when freshly cut grass was caught and blown by the wind.9 In 2006, an analysis of 40 Spanish conventional and organic farms found that eight were contaminated with GM corn varieties, including one farmer whose crop contained 12.6 per cent GM plants.

4. Reliance on pesticides

Far from reducing dependency on pesticides and fertilisers, GM crops frequently increase farmers’ reliance on these products. Herbicide-resistant crops can be sprayed indiscriminately with weedkillers such as Monsanto’s ‘Roundup’ because they are engineered to withstand the effect of the chemical. This means that significantly higher levels of herbicide are found in the final food product, however, and often a second herbicide is used in the late stages of the crop to promote ‘dessication’ or drying, meaning these crops receive a double dose of harmful chemicals.10 BT maize, engineered to produce an insecticidal toxin, has never eliminated the use of pesticides,11 and because the BT gene cannot be ‘switched off’ the crops continue to produce the toxin right up until harvest, reaching the consumer at its highest possible concentrations.12

5. ‘Frankenfoods’

Despite the best efforts of the biotech industry, consumers remain staunchly opposed to GM food. In 2007, the vast majority of 11,700 responses to the Government’s consultation on whether contamination of organic food with traces of GM crops should be allowed were strongly negative. The Government’s own ‘GM Nation’ debate in 2003 discovered that half of its participants ‘never want to see GM crops grown in the United Kingdom under any circumstances’, and 96 per cent thought that society knew too little about the health impacts of genetic modification. In India, farmers’ experience of BT cotton has been so disastrous that the Maharashtra government now advises that farmers grow soybeans instead. And in Australia, over 250 food companies lodged appeals with the state governments of New South Wales and Victoria over the lifting of bans against growing GM canola crops.13

6. Breeding resistance

Nature is smart, and there are already reports of species resistant to GM crops emerging. This is seen in the emergence of new ‘superweeds’ on farms in North America – plants that have evolved the ability to withstand the industry’s chemicals. A report by then UK conservation body English Nature (now Natural England), in 2002, revealed that oilseed rape plants that had developed resistance to three or more herbicides were ‘not uncommon’ in Canada.14 The superweeds had been created through random crosses between neighbouring GM crops. In order to tackle these superweeds, Canadian farmers were forced to resort to even stronger, more toxic herbicides.15 Similarly, pests (notably the diamondback moth) have been quick to develop resistance to BT toxin, and in 2007 swarms of mealy bugs began attacking supposedly pest-resistant Indian cotton.

7. Creating problems for solutions

Many of the so-called ‘problems’ for which the biotechnology industry develops ‘solutions’ seem to be notions of PR rather than science. Herbicide-resistance was sold under the claim that because crops could be doused in chemicals, there would be much less need to weed mechanically or plough the soil, keeping more carbon and nitrates under the surface. But a new long-term study by the US Agricultural Research Service has shown that organic farming, even with ploughing, stores more carbon than the GM crops save.16 BT cotton was claimed to increase resistance to pests, but farmers in East Africa discovered that by planting a local weed amid their corn crop, they could lure pests to lay their eggs on the weed and not the crop.17

8. Health risks

The results of tests on animals exposed to GM crops give serious cause for concern over their safety. In 1998, Scottish scientists found damage to every single internal organ in rats fed blightresistant GM potatoes. In a 2006 experiment, female rats fed on herbicide-resistant soybeans gave birth to severely stunted pups, of which half died within three weeks. The survivors were sterile. In the same year, Indian news agencies reported that thousands of sheep allowed to graze on BT cotton crop residues had died suddenly. Further cases of livestock deaths followed in 2007. There have also been reports of allergy-like symptoms among Indian labourers in BT cotton fields. In 2002, the only trial ever to involve human beings appeared to show that altered genetic material from GM soybeans not only survives in the human gut, but may even pass its genetic material to bacteria within the digestive system.18

9. Left hungry

GM crops have always come with promises of increased yields for farmers, but this has rarely been the case. A three-year study of 87 villages in India found that non-BT cotton consistently produced 30 per cent higher yields than the (more expensive) GM alternative.19 It is now widely accepted that GM soybeans produce consistently lower yields than conventional varieties. In 1992, Monsanto’s own trials showed that the company’s Roundup Ready soybeans yield 11.5 per cent less on harvest. Later Monsanto studies went on to reveal that some trials of GM canola crops in Australia actually produced yields 16 per cent below the non-GM national average.20

10. Wedded to fertilisers and fossil fuels

No genetically modified crop has yet eliminated the need for chemical fertilisers in order to achieve expected yields. Although the industry has made much of the possibility of splicing nitrogen-fixing genes into commercial food crops in order to boost yields, there has so far been little success. This means that GM crops are just as dependent on fossil fuels to make fertilisers as conventional agriculture. In addition to this, GM traits are often specifically designed to fit with large-scale industrial agriculture. Herbicide resistance is of no real benefit unless your farm is too vast to weed mechanically, and it presumes that the farmers already farm in a way that involves the chemical spraying of their crops. Similarly, BT toxin expression is designed to counteract the problem of pest control in vast monocultures, which encourage infestations. In a world that will soon have to change its view of farming – facing as it does the twin challenges of climate change and peak oil – GM crops will soon come to look like a relic of bygone practices.

Mark Anslow is the Ecologist’s senior reporter




3 Telegraph, 14th January 2008,

4 Soil Association, 2007,



7 Indian Muslims, 20th November 2007,

8 New Scientist, ‘Genes for Greens’, 5th January 2007, Issue 2637, Vol 197







15 Innovations Report, 20th June 2005,



18 All references from ‘GM Food Nightmare Unfolding in the Regulatory Sham’, Mae-Wan Ho, Joe Cummins, Peter Saunders, ISIS report.




Anonymous said...

My question is on all rumors flying around that Kenya now is going to start Producing GM crops in a major scale?? Why would Kenya Government agriculture Minister take that route - when reports and study indicate GM Crops are no good -looking at all the countries especially India that tried growing GM crops and hit a disaster and farmers committing suicide?? why should Kenya government allow this??

Genetic modification can't deliver a safe, secure future food supply. Here's why...Despite the hype, genetic modification consistently fails to live up to industry claims.

All references from ‘GM Food Nightmare Unfolding in the Regulatory Sham’, Mae-Wan Ho, Joe Cummins, Peter Saunders, ISIS report.

Failure to deliver

Costing the Earth

Contamination and gene escape

Reliance on pesticides


Breeding resistance

Creating problems for solutions

Health risks
Soil Association, 2007,
Indian Muslims, 20th November 2007,

Anonymous said...

Kwani there's no news in Kenya today.

Chris, ebu wake up. Niggaz need to blog!!!

Anonymous said...

Anon 12:53

This blog is going down. It has breach terms and condition of google blogger by publishing articles and comments which are racists, tribalistic and offensive.

Anonymous said...

anon2:00 PM

yup from kikuyu malaya's central kenya....

Anonymous said...

Hitch as Wanjohi fails to hand over at varsity

Kwani, does kenya belong to 'them'? Look at mumunya - 'stepping aside', and then expecting to pick up from where he left!

Anonymous said...

Anon 2:24, Chris is in bed with a Kikuyu malaya.

UrXlnc said...

after many comments about his return

isnt it amazing that we can only see pictures and not a word

Anonymous said...

'So my friends who run away at the sight of a knife, take courage, look the knife in the eye and tell it you are ready to tango. Once that piece is sliced off, run with it to the lake and watch as the waves sail away with it. Or you may ask our friends from Sotik and Bungoma and Voi and Nyeri and Kangundo what they did with theirs.'

sam okello could not have put it better. hope he took the cue to rid himself off the smelly partner!!

bwa ha ha ha

lucy said...

am really proud of my country,n the medals they have won, 4 those pple complaining abt their poor english, no-one was born perfect.

Anonymous said...

Often we forget the little guy, the SMB, in our discussions of the comings and goings of the Internet marketing industry. Sure there are times like this when a report surfaces talking about their issues and concerns but, for the most part, we like to talk about big brands and how they do the Internet marketing thing well or not so well.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...