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Archive for January 2nd, 2008

LARA-Luos against raila abroad

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

Posted on Mzalendo on Tuesday November 20, 2007 11:54 pm

It is time for right-thinking Luos to speak. It is very unfortunate that a great lie is being told that all Luos are Raila damu and will vote as a block for him. This is coupled with the other lie that all Kenyans abroad support ODM. I can openly tell you that Raila has next to no support here in Canada and in some Luo stronghold back home. On his over-publicised visits here, he only managed to meet a handful of his supporters.

It is time we made some facts clear. For starters, not all Luos follow Raila like sheep. As we talk now, residents of my home constituency, Rarieda, are the envy of the entire Luo land. From the time they voted Honorable Raphael Tuju in, they have seen the kind of development that they only dream about come to their door step. For too long now, Luos have been cheated that the only Moses who will deliver them to Canaan is an Odinga. The success of Tuju’s effort have torn that Jaramogi mystic into shreds. It is now clear that other Luos can lead. However, instead of working with them, Raila wants to finish them. Tuju has been hands-on in the setting up of the Rarieda water project. Courtesy of the Internet, Raila can no longer hoodwink the rest of us abroad. How can we dismiss the picture we saw of Tuju in a construction worker’s overalls supervising the construction of the water pipes?

For over 40 years, Luos have blindly followed the Odinga clan, and what do they have to show for it? Nothing but abject poverty at the grass roots. In the meantime, he has been raking money in. There is no question that Raila is the richest Luo in the world. Yet his supporters in Luoland and Kibera are some of the poorest people in Kenya . In a very curious twist that only Luos can enlighten us on, while the likes of Kenyatta and Moi were handing out goodies, plots and money to the needy, poor Luos see nothing wrong in handing over their meager earnings to Raila, all in the hope that once he is president, he will magically transform Luoland into the garden of Eden. Yet it is well known that Odingas have not brought an iota of development in Luoland. Just compare Luoland to their neighboring Kisiiland. While Kisiis have never even had a president, their hard work and development conscious leadership is well-displayed by their stone houses with mabati roofs.
Now, visit Luoland and all you see are the same grass-roofed old round huts that Speke and Grant found in the late 1800’s! Yet Raila feels no shame when he drives around there in his Sh 15 Million Hummer Military vehicle for show.

In his selfish quest for the presidency, Raila has been telling blatant lies, hoping that he can develop a momentum that will usher him into the high office before the people realise his lies. By then it will be too late. Raila is a clever manipulator who is working on Kenyan’s predilection of being attracted by the grass on the other side of the river, the unknown and any idea from abroad, and sometimes mistakenly clamoring for change for the heck of change. We are therefore calling out his lies now:

1. Raila’s hatred of Kikuyus is a ploy. All he is doing is working up the politics of the 1960’s on the mindless Luo masses, yet Kenyans have been busy building barriers across tribes. If he hated Kikuyus that much, how could he let his son marry a Kikuyu just the other day? As Kenyans we have seen the kind of bloodshed that tribal conflicts can lead to. Think of the Rwanda genocide, Somali clan wars and the continuing massacre in Sudan ‘s Darfur region. Is this the kind of leadership Kenyans want? No!

2. Majimbo is a concept that has never worked anywhere in the world. Again this goes back to the Jaramogi politics of 1960. At that time the pros and cons of Majimbo were debated fair and square, and majimbo lost. Balkanisation of any country has never worked and one needs not look any futher than the Balkan states themselves. In the Euphoria of breaking up the USSR , majimbos and countries were formed along tribal lines. In less that three years, these break away countries realised their mistake and came together and formed the CIS union. Do we have to break apart, kill each other, then regret later? From an economic point of view, and the fact that in a true majimbo system, each jimbo would be allocated development funds based on their contribution to the national kitty, what does Luoland have to offer except dwindling fish supplies? Raila did not raise a voice when Moi killed the sugar, cotton and rice farming by allowing tax-free imports, in fact he
selfishly benefited from it.
Raila’s socialist ideas are outdated: Cuban’s can’t wait for Fidel Castro to die. North Korea is a dirt-poor country stuck in a time-warp. The sole purpose of creating majimbo is to provide Raila with a freedom to lord over once he leaves the presidency (assuming he gets it) in 2017.

3. Raila killed the Constitution reforms. By cleverly budding some contentious issues with the main agenda, Raila was able to hoodwink some people into voting against proposed constitution reforms during the referendum. By now, Kenyans would be reaping from the benefits of those reforms. Can he tell us why we need a figurehead president, if the Prime Minister will end up doing what the current president is doing?

4. Raila cannot deliver a new constitution in 100 days. Simple logic. A constitution reform needs two-thirds majority vote in parliament. There is now way he can gather that in 100 days knowing the hatred he is causing. The law requires a referendum and that cannot be done in 100 days.

After all Raila and his sycophants rejected a 90% proper constitution to later cry they want a 5 % section on the current constitution to be replaced with what suited them, instead of accepting the 90% and try to replace the improper sections ? Can that kind of person be trusted? isnt that an indication of pure selfishness and power hungry.

5. Raila’s fight against corruption is a lie. While on the surface it would look like Raila is out to fight corruption, the truth is that he has been eating from the same corruption plate. This is precisely why he cannot touch those he has eaten with. A case in point is the Kisumu Molasses plant. He was given this plant by Moi as a present for delivering Luos to Kanu. Then he cleverly cheated Luos to raise money to buy the plant, money that he put in his pocket, and then allocated only 5% shares to them. The rest of the 95% shares and the money he collected he kept for himself. If he was clean and above board, shares for the plant should have been floated in the open market for all Kenyans to buy. He should have mobilized the various Luo organizations and groups to buy blocks of shares so that even the simplest sugar cane farmer would have had a portion of even one share.

6. Raila is selling the country to foreigners. Just the other day Raila announced that investors would flood into Kenya when he comes into power. What he didn’t tell us is that he has been cutting deals with foreigners to sell them Kenyan assets and institutions one he comes into power. That has been a major reason for his numerous trips abroad. This cannot be allowed. While Kenyans have demonstrated a hunger to invest in the stock market, Raila is selling us back to our old Colonizers. How can we allow this?

7. Raila is very vengeful. Another lie. Reacting to talk of his intended revenge on Moi and Kikuyus, Raila has responded that he will not revenge. Yet, when he was chased out by women in Meru (for some reason reason he seems to bring out the wrath of women!), he was later quoted saying that those regions that don’t vote for him will cry come December 29th. Which begs the question, if Raila won, would he be the President of Kenya or Nyanza? We read in the bible that “Vengeance is mine, says the Lord”..Raila is certainly not God. We cannot have a president hell-bent on revenge. We saw how Moi devastated non-Kalenjins (including Raila) when he came in with the idea of revenge.

8. Secret MOUs have been signed. This is an open secret. With pro-Arab support, Raila has signed on to transform Kenya into a Muslim state, something that would put Kenya at loggerheads with our western donors and partners. This pact is in addition to the creation of a Jimbo la Pwani, where a 10-mile wide strip along the Kenyan coast would be ceded, again, to the Sultans of the gulf, whole will then appoint Balala as Sultan. This will result in the rest of Kenya being a land locked country. Taxes would levied on anything that comes through the port of Mombasa , including foodstuff. Kenya is predominantly Christian, but with freedom of worship for everybody. We do not need religious bigotry to lead us into faith-based chaos like those in Afghanistan (Taribans), and Sudan (Sharia law).

9. It is do or die for Raila. Even if that means bloodshed. Just the other day, the papers had the picture of Raila inspecting a guard of honor. Since when did a private person in Kenya have a private army? Is this not a signal for his intended take over of power by force? How can Kenyans allow one man to lead us into bloodshed? We lost our fathers, mothers, brothers, sisters and children in the Coup he led in 1982. We say, Not Again!

10. Raila is a Liar and Cannot be trusted. Very true. He tells lies knowing that the Common Mwananchi has no way to verify the truth. Sometimes this is a deft trap to get into a name-calling contest with Kibaki. Recently, Raila has been trying to woo the Muslim Vote by harping on the extradited Kenyan-Somali terrorists. Yet he knows very well that Kenya has extradition treaties with other countries (that is how “Miracle Babies” child slave trader Gilbert Deya will be brought back to Kenya to face the courts). In any case, why should the Kenyan Tax payer spend money on the terrorits’s trials when this is not our war?

The Bottom line: We need Raila to lead a strong opposition in parliament but not as president.

Please pass this message to all Luos and right-thinking Kenyans. Luos can no longer afford to be alienated from the rest of Kenyans simply for the selfish satisfaction of One Dangerous Man (ODM). We want to make it clear that not all Luos follow Raila senselessly like sheep.

You can fool some people some time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time-Bob Marley.

BY McDouglas Owino
Luos Against Raila Abroad (LARA)

Published by API/APN africanpress@chello.no source.mzalendo

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Raila and ODM Thursday rally illegal,says Kenya’s Police Commissioner

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

He says those who will attempt to attend the meeting will face the music. They will be breaking the law and will be arrested. This is a sign that the government will not give into the demands by the opposition. Instead, will deal with them with the force necessary.

The opposition will be hoping that people attend the rally so that when arrested or beaten up by riot police, then they get the limelight that they are looking for in an effort to get the west to give them support.

It is understood that many jobless supporters of ODM may decide to be brave because they feel that they have nothing to loose ifarrested. Otherwise those with responsibilities will not want to demonstrate and break the law.

If ODM supporters choose to demonstrate, breaking the law and risk arrest, it will be interesting to see if Raila and his pentagon group will dare to join them and risk the beating by police.

________________

Nation story says it all:

Ali cautions Kenyans against attending rally

Story by NATION Reporter

Police Commissioner Hussein Ali has cautioned Kenyans against attending rallies called by politicians, warning that they would be arrested. Major-General Ali outlawed a meeting called by ODM leaders at Uhuru Park on Thursday, citing the volatile security situation in the country.

The police commissioner said: After due consideration of the prevailing security situation, the meeting is illegal and any person who will attempt to attend this meeting will face the full force of the law.

He cited the law on the guidelines and regulations for organising and holding such political rallies, processions and meetings.

After all, the season for political rallies in the country is over. There will be no more rallies and we will ensure that none takes place, he told journalists at Vigilance House, the police headquarters.

On Tuesday, Government Spokesman Alfred Mutua said the police directive will be in force until the current security situation normalises.

Maj-Gen Ali warned: Anybody inciting Kenyans into violence, engaging or procuring others to commit criminal offences will be dealt with according to the law without any exception, he said.

Police Spokesman Eric Kiraithe said police will not have the capacity to cater for political rallies and at the same time monitor the security situation in the country.

Lifted and published by Korir, API/APN africanpress@chello.no source.nation.ke

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Kibaki has invited all elected MPs to State House this afternoon

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

kibaki.jpg<Kibaki says no to Raila’s demands to step down. Instead he calls a meeting to start normal government business.

All elected members of parliament have been invited to State House by the president. The country is in turmoil after the recent elections and is expected that the head of state will impress upon the Members of parliament to talk peace to their supporters.

With hopes to become president as he had planned fading, raila2.jpgRaila (left photo) looks up to the international community and asks for help to oust Kibaki.

Raila knows that this is the last time he can become the president. If he does not get it now, it is never and this is causing him and his supporters a great deal of pain. Raila as a person is good to know, but as a head of state, many people have their reservations. The fact that Raila’s party got many MPs is simply because it was a protest vote, not necessarily for love for Raila.

Raila who has demanded that the head of state resigns his post may not attend the meeting. He may also try to stop MPs aligned to him in his efforts to have Kibaki not to be recognised.

Sources close to API/APN say Raila will not like to see the MPs voted to Parliament through ODM to legitimise Kibaki’s election as president by attending the meeting.

Sources also say that the Ambassadors from the west who are based in Nairobi are asking Raila not to attend the meeting.

It is however important for the country if Railaunderstood the need to reconcile.

Published by Korir, API/APN africanpress@chello.no source.kenyanmedia

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My Meeting Mandela in Oslo in 1994 – Man of high integrity

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

I was privileged to meet Mr Mandela for the first time when he attended a Hate/Peace conference in Oslo in 1994, before becoming South Africa’s first black President on 10th May the same year.
As he came from his hotel room in SAS hotel, Oslo, headed for the conference hall to address conference delegates, I was at the conference corridor also headed for the same conference. I stopped when I saw him coming behind me and shouted for his attention by calling his name.
On doing so, Mandela, a man of integrity did not shy away. He stopped, we shook hands and exchanged words of encouragement. I was at the time the only black reporter based in Oslo filing stories for a number of African newspapers.
It was a pleasant meeting shaking hands with a man who had fought for freedom for the black South Africans and got locked up for 27 years by the then white regime in his country.
Shaking hands with Mandela was an experience. His hands so soft like that of a young baby although he had been put on hard labour by his captives. Soft hands that carried warmth, human love and peace from his heart that was transformed to total peaceful reconciliation, saving his country and his black sisters and brothers from going for revenge. I felt a bond when I shook his hands and that experience has remained in my heart until this date, the second of January 2008 when the need to recall the events of that dayis necessary. He was and still is a man of peace.
I am remembering that day of the peace conference in Oslo when I met and talked with him. This is because the same peace he talked about in the conference, the peace that South Africans needed whenblacks andwhites in his country hated one another and thoughts of reconciliationfar away, is now needed by the Kenyans after the recently held presidential elections that now causes turmoil in the country.
Just like many others, admire Mandela because he came out of prison, was elected to power, he forgave the whites who had denied him freedom and placed reconciliation as his number one agenda.
Kenyan leaders should now do the same by looking forward and give peace a priority. Those who won and those who lost should think of the people they lead and work for reconciliation and peace in the country.
By Korir, Chief Editor, API/APN
———
Mandela Story: BBC
mandela_nelson.jpgLeading anti-apartheid campaigner Nelson Mandela was freed from prison in South Africa in 1990 after 27 years.

His release follows the relaxation of apartheid laws – including lifting the ban on leading black rights party the African National Congress (ANC) – by South African President FW de Klerk.

Mr Mandela appeared at the gates of Victor-Verster Prison in Paarl at 1614 local time – an hour late – with his wife Winnie.

Holding her hand and dressed in a light brown suit and tie he smiled at the ecstatic crowds and punched the air in a victory salute before taking a silver BMW sedan to Cape Town, 40 miles away.

People danced in the streets across the country and thousands clamoured to see him at a rally in Cape Town

Nelson Mandela succeeded Oliver Tambo as president of the ANC later in 1991.He divorced Winnie the next year following her convictions for kidnapping and being accessory to an assault.Mr Mandela and FW de Klerk shared the Nobel Peace Prize in 1993 for their efforts to transform South African society.In the first multi-racial elections in the country’s history he was elected president and the ANC gained 252 of the 400 seats in the national assembly.

10th of May 1994 – becomes the first black president of South Africa

He was succeeded as ANC president by Thabo Mbeki in 1997 and stepped down in favour of Mr Mbeki as national president after the 1999 elections.

Mr Mandela re-married in 1998 and was diagnosed with prostate cancer in 2001, aged 83.

————BBC

Mandela led the struggle to replace the apartheid regime of South Africa with a multi-racial democracy. He was imprisoned for 27 years and went on to become his country’s first black president. Rolihlahla Mandela was born in Transkei, South Africa on 18 July 1918 and was given the name of Nelson by one of his teachers. His father Henry was a respected advisor to the Thembu royal family.

Mandela was educated at the University of Fort Hare and later at the University of Witwatersrand, qualifying in law in 1942. He became increasingly involved with the African National Congress (ANC), a multi-racial nationalist movement trying to bring about political change in South Africa.

In 1948, the National Party came to power and began to implement a policy of ‘apartheid’, or forced segregation on the basis of race. The ANC staged a campaign of passive resistance against apartheid laws. In 1952, Mandela became one of the ANC’s deputy presidents. By the late 1950s, faced with increasing government discrimination, Mandela, his friend Oliver Tambo, and others began to move the ANC in a more radical direction. Mandela was tried for treason in 1956, but acquitted after a five-year trial.

In March 1960, sixty-nine black anti-apartheid demonstrators were killed by police at Sharpeville. The government declared a state of emergency and banned the ANC. In response, the organisation abandoned its policy of non-violence and Mandela helped establish the ANC’s military wing ‘Umkhonto we Sizwe’ or ‘The Spear of the Nation’. He was appointed its commander-in-chief and travelled abroad to receive military training and to find support for the ANC.

On his return he was arrested and sentenced to five years in prison. In 1963, Mandela and other ANC leaders were tried for plotting to overthrow the government by violence. The following year Mandela was sentenced to life imprisonment. He was held in Robben Island prison, off the coast of Cape Town, and later in Pollsmoor Prison on the mainland. During his years in prison he became an international symbol of resistance to apartheid.

In 1990, the South African government responded to internal and international pressure and released Mandela, at the same time lifting the ban against the ANC. In 1991 Mandela became the ANC’s leader.

He was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize together with FW de Klerk, then president of South Africa, in 1993. The following year South Africa held its first multi-racial election and Mandela was elected its first black president. In 1998, he was married for the third time to Gracia Machel, the widow of the president of Mozambique. Mandela’s second wife, Winnie, whom he married in 1958 and divorced in 1996, remains a controversial anti-apartheid activist. In 1997 he stepped down as ANC leader and in 1999 his presidency of South Africa came to an end.

Mandela continues to support a variety of causes, particularly the fight against HIV-Aids. In 2004, Mandela announced he would be retiring from public life and his public appearances have become less and less frequent. On 29 August 2007, a permanent statue to Nelson Mandela was unveiled in Parliament Square, London.

Published by Korir, API/APN africanpress@chello.no

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Swede threatened for not speeding

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

This was in 2005: The Swede threatened by a restless Norwegian truck driver. He ended up being sentenced.

Now the Supreme Court has a case to decide on whether speed cameras used by the policeare reliable or not.

____________

The old story of an agitated Norwegian!:

A Swedish motorist was terrified to learn that holding to the speed limit can be risky when driving in front of an irritable Norwegian trucker. The 29-year-old Norwegian truck driver was given an 18-day suspended sentence and fined NOK 10,000 (USD 1580) for finally threatening the Swedish driver with a 30 centimeter (foot) long blade, NRK (Norwegian Broadcasting) reports.

The Swede told the court that he was aware that the speed limit of 80 kph (50 mph) was often ignored in that stretch of the E6 highway to Halden, but wanted to be safe because of the many speeding cameras in the area.

After mounting irritation, the trucker decided to try and pass the Swede on the right when the road finally branched into two lanes. At the same time, the Swedish motorist decided to move into the slower lane in order to allow the truck to pass him on the left.

The truck driver interpreted this maneuver as an attempt to block him, and began tailgating and flashing his headlights, which the Swede said both disturbed and frightened him.

When traffic ground to a halt near Halden, the Norwegian trucker sped towards the smaller vehicle, swung past and then stopped. The trucker exited, started banging on the window and finally started waving a large knife at the motorist.

The Swede called police, who stopped the Norwegian and found the knife in the truck cabin.

Halden court ruled that there were no extenuating circumstances and that a professional driver should be expected to uphold high traffic standards.

Lifted and published by Korir, API/APN africanpress@chello.no source.aftenposteneng.2005

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Speed measuring cameras unreliable? Norwegian Supreme Court to decide

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

The nation’s speed cameras will be assessed by Norway’s Supreme Court after a man caught doing 199 kilometers per hour (123.6 mph) was sentenced relatively lightly. Both the original court and a court of appeals felt that there was too great a risk of faulty reading from the photo-boxes used to track speeders, newspaper Nordlys reports.

The Automatic Traffic Control (ATK) system measured the male motorist’s speed at 199 kph on a northern Norway road. Police were convinced that the car was going at least 187 kph, but the man insisted he was not doing more than half of what the reading said.

Both courts ruled that the man was going at least 140 kph (87 mph), but both expressed doubt in the reliability of the photo-box system. The man was sentenced to 21 days in jail and the loss of his drivers license for two years.

But the prosecution was not satisfied and appealed the verdict to the Supreme Court – both prosecution and defense can appeal decisions in Norway – in order to determine the status of the measurements produced by the camera system.

“This is a rather unusual case, and the challenge lies in explaining how the technical measurements are made,” chief public prosecutor Lars Fause told the newspaper.

Lifted and published by Korir, API/APN africanpress@chello.no source.aftenposteneng

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Save Kenya from war, writes Clay in Sweden

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

Recount all the votes through the media and if possible international ambassadorsif this would save Kenya from a civil war. Kenyans are peace loving people and it takes very little reasoning to save Kenyans from the ongoing war.

The delay and some few mistakes that were made during the elections are of course the reason for the ongoing warand this can be avoided by President Kibaki.

Clay Onyango, Sweden

_____________
Claygets the response below coming from London
______________
Clay, once the president has been sworn in, it is too late – any issues arising therefore are addressed in court. The opposition does not have confidence the Kenyan law given that new judges were appointed a few days to the elections.
There has to be another way. We cannot afford this loss of innocent lives anymore. I hope all the leaders work together to bring about peace since they are the ones who spearhead tribalism.

By Cindy
London

 

Published by Korir, API/APN africanpress@chello.nosource.clay’ssite

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THE JEWEL OF EAST AFRICA COMPLETELY BLEMISHED…THE MOST STABLE COUNTRY IN EAST AFRICA IN SHAMBLES..

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

All Kenyans and the world at large MUST today rise and condemn to the highest degree the abhorable manner in which their freedom, lives and rights have been snatched away by power-hungry-heartless individuals.
Kenya being a young democracy has been appluaded; domestically and internationally in the last few years for the tremendous growth by its people politically. It is such a shame that something this valuable that Kenyans have invested so much time (decades)in can be robbed in just 48 hours.

I take this opportunity to show respect to the now over 300 hundred Kenyans that have so far lost their lives….lives that could have been saved if only cowards like the chairman of the Electoral Commission of Kenya (ECK)Mr. Kivuitu were brave enough not to give in to ‘pressure’ and stand up for Kenyans. It is such a shame that a respected institution like the ECK can let kenyans down to the level that it has; only to satisfy the greed and heartlessness of few individuals.

The ECK was a body entrusted by kenyans and even the international community to bear the electoral torch for kenya,what they have instead given kenyans is bloodshed and an uncertain future; a future that may forever be marred by an uncalled for ethnic hatred.

I hope people like Kivuitu do not sleep at night in the wake of the agony of innocent kenyans. Kivuitu’s confession today is by all means a cowardly act that only shows his level of heartlessness in the wake of despair and pain among kenyans. Lives have been lost and deep ethnic wounds opened that will take decades to heal.

We have a ‘president -elect’, who was voted in ‘freely and fairly’ by the people of Kenya. It is surprising that the same people who voted in ‘our president’ are today in the greatest pain of their lives. Their freedom of movement, freedom of information and speech have since been curtailed. These people have today been slaughtered, burnt alive, shot dead, orphaned, left homeless, so unsure of what tommorrow holds. The Kenyan people who were once proud of their peaceful country are today sent running from the same country, seeking refuge in neighbouring countries.

And the worst thing of all is that democracy and freedom may have suffered an early death in kenya FOREVER. Who will ever again get up at 4 a.m to go cast their votes when at the end of the day, their votes, voices and choices dont count?

Written by Beryl Otumba(A Kenyan living in Sweden)

Published by API/APN africanpress@chello.no

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Nigeria: Niger Delta militants kill 12 in New Year attack

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

nigeriamenin-uniform.jpgLagos (Nigeria) The Rivers State Commissioner of Police in south-eastern Nigeria, Mr. Felix Ogbaudu, Tuesday said militants attacked a police station in the Presidential Hotel in Port Harcourt and killed 12 persons.
The Rivers State Commissioner of Police in south-eastern Nigeria, Mr. Felix Ogbaudu, Tuesday said militants attacked a police station in the Presidential Hotel in Port Harcourt and killed 12 persons.

Ogbaudu told journalists in Port Harcourt; about 700km from Abuja that the attack came barely 24 hours after the Rivers State government lifted the curfew in the state.

He said that the militants launched the attack between midnight and 3 a.m. on the New Years Day.

He said the militants attacked the Borokiri and Trans-Amadi police stations. At the Borokiri station, three policemen were killed in a shoot-out with the militants. Seven civilians who were either returning from church or milling around their neigbourhoods were also killed, he said.

The police commissioner said that the police killed some of the militants and recovered three assault rifles and one machine gun from them.

He said that the militants abandoned three vehicles with which they operated. Ogbaudu said that at the Trans-Amadi police station, one police inspector was killed when the militants opened fire on the station.

He said that the militants also attacked the Presidential Hotel by opening fire on the hotels lobby, killing a security man and wounding several others.

We are still collating the casualty figures, but it was indeed a bloody New Year eve in Port Harcourt, Ogbaudu said.

Worried by the development, the governor of the state, Mr. Chibuike Amaechi summoned a security meeting on Tuesday to review the security situation in the state.

A similar event occurred last April when militants attacked the Mini Okoro and Elelenwo police stations in Port Harcourt and killed seven policemen.

In August and on Christmas Day, militants destroyed the Okrika police station with dynamite, and also three policemen were killed when militants attacked the Akinima police station in the Ahoada West Local Government area of Rivers State.

Published by Korir, API/APN africanpress@chello.no source.apa

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Kenya in flames due to greedy leadership

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

Leadership is one thing people have to be careful about. Leadership should not be acquired due to greediness. Leadership is something is noble. Leadership in Kenya, we now see is being decided by greediness.

Leadership should have people who know when statesmanship should be brought in, a thing we are not seeing happen in Kenya now after the Presidential elections.

Elections is over and people should go about their normal businesses

____________________________

Nation story:

Raid on church leaves 35 dead as chaos spreads Story by SAMUEL SIRINGI and PETER NGETICH

At least 35 people, most of them women and children, died on Tuesday in Eldoret in the most bizarre killing yet in the ongoing post-election violence.

Elizabeth Wangoi wails near the Kenya Assemblies of God church in Kiambaa, Eldoret, where more than 35 women and children were burnt beyond recognition. The women and children sought refuge there after their homes were burnt in violence over disputed presidential poll results. Photo/JARED NYATAYA

They were killed when more than 200 youths burnt down a church where residents of two villages in Eldoret South constituency had sought refuge.

The Kiambaa and Kimuri villagers were caught unawares as the youths chanted war songs and surrounded the Kenya Assemblies of God church in Kiambaa in the afternoon.

Serious burns

Those who tried to escape were waylaid and burnt in a nearby shamba.

One of the dead, police confirmed, was a disabled woman in a wheelchair.

A pregnant woman who sustained serious burns on her leg was among 20 survivors who were rushed to Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital for treatment.

According to a survivor, Mr Joseph Kamande, 47, the killers accused those camping in the church of having voted for President Mwai Kibaki.

They said we must pay for our decision to vote for President Kibaki, he said.

Mr Kamande said he was lucky to be alive after he fell into a ditch, leading the killers to believe he had died.

But he lost his wife, three children and two grand-children in the incident.

Another survivor, Mrs Elizabeth Wangui Kimunya, 102, had gone to answer a call of nature when the attack occurred.

Peter Munderu, 44, said he lost his three children. Many bodies are still buried in the debris, he said.

The killings brought to 50 the number of deaths reported around the town on Tuesday alone.

Eleven others had been killed in Langas estate early Tuesday morning.

Humanitarian crisis

The town is experiencing one of the worst humanitarian crisis in its history.

Kenya Red Cross officials estimated that more than 30,000 families had been forced out of their homes.

The displaced families have packed into police station compounds, churches, schools and mosques to capacity.

But the families, mainly women and children, are facing a serious shortage of food and water as all shops and supermarkets remained closed.

Uchumi Supermarket, which had remained the only open shopping outlet, was closed yesterday after it ran out of stocks. There is also a shortage of medicine and sanitation.

We are kindly appealing to donors and humanitarian organisations to help supply food items to the women and children that are facing starvation, said Mrs Mary Kiptanui, a volunteer with the Kenya Red Cross.

Calls were being made yesterday that a way be cleared to enable displaced people travel to their rural areas.

We are facing a critical humanitarian and security situation in Eldoret, said Mr Mohamud Jama an elder in the town.

There is heavy fighting in the outskirts and there are no signs that the flare-ups will end any time soon, he added.

Many bodies lay at the Moi University Teaching and Referral Hospital mortuary.

We need urgent measures to help us collect the bodies from the mortuary for burial, said Mr Jama.

Provided refuge

Former State House Comptroller Ibrahim Kiptanui, who helped rescue two children from the hand of killers, described the situation as grave.

In Kisumu, at least 56 people have died and 1,500 others displaced following skirmishes that have rocked the area in the last five days.

Kisumu central and Kondele police stations provided refuge to many of the displaced while others camped at the Kisumu West DCs office after groups of people destroyed their homes and threatened to lynch them.

Their attempts to secure transport back to their ancestral homes hit a snag after vehicle owners refused to ferry them, fearing that they may be attacked along the way.

Nyanza PC Paul Olando said a group of residents had requested the administration to assist them move out of Kisumu.

He said security arrangements had been made among three PCs to hand over the people at their boundaries.

Kisumu DC Jamleck Mbaruga was holed up in a meeting with the vehicle owners for the better part of the morning.

When the press called on him in his office, he said, We are discussing how to get these people out of this place to a safer zone.

He, however, did not elaborate whether the Government will provide alternative means if they fail to reach an agreement.

The riots that entered the fifth day yesterday have left a lot of damage in their wake. The protesters burnt down several residential and commercial buildings in the town, looted from shops and injured several people.

Mr Mbaruga described the situation as terrible but assured that the Government was doing everything possible to restore normalcy.

Additional reporting by Walter Menya

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Mombasa Bishop wants poll losers to pull up their socks and preach peace

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

The Bishop wants peace to continue. He wants ODM to grow up and face the reality now that they have lost the elections. If they want to be elected, they should come back in in the next election, after president Kibaki has completed his second term in office.

If the ODM group is for peace and the prosperity of theKenyan people, they should listen to the Bishop and concede defeat immediately.

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Standard story:

Bishop urges poll losers to accept defeat

By Amos Kareithi Mombasa Anglican Bishop Julius Kalu has urged Kenyans not to let the gains of 44 years go to waste because of an election.

He appealed to winners and losers to preach peace and reconciliation so that the country did not plunge into chaos.

He said although the election results did not meet the expectations of some Kenyans, it was important that people rededicate themselves to nation building.

“Accept the results as announced by the ECK Chairman, Mr Samuel Kivuitu,” he appealed.

Kalu expressed disappointment at the way the winner in the presidential poll was announced and then sworn in.

“We went to the polls to get a Government. We were not expecting what happened. The swearing in should have been done in the open as the President is for the country,” the bishop said.

Kalu added that Kenyans should also accept the results so that people could go on with their lives.

“If losers are dissatisfied with the results, they should complain through the courts,” he advised. “In every election, there are winners and losers. They should call for peace even as they pursue the matter,” he added.

Uncertainty in some parts of the country, the bishop said, had an adverse effect on the lives of ordinary people.

“As I speak, shops are closed or have been raided,” he added.

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Courts is the only way forward, Kenya minister tells the ODM leaders

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

It is correct. The ODM group should seek legal redress in the courts. There is no needfor them to continue encouraging their supporters to cause chaos in the country by keeping quiet. They must call upon their supporters to stop causing chaos.

Kenyamust continue the peaceful path as has been for many years. Leaders who have been defeated must allow the winner to lead.They can come back and try againafter 5 years.

As Karua says,the results cannot be changed by anyone apart from the courts. The International community represented by the white ambassadors based in Kenya should keep off the runnig of the country.

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The standard story:

Seek legal redress, says Karua

 

By Joseph Murimi Justice and Constitutional Affairs minister, Ms Martha Karua, has called for national reconciliation and asked ODM to seek judicial redress over the disputed presidential vote.

Karua said both winners and losers of the election needed each other and asked ODM to drop its hard-line stance.

He told the party leaders to take the overture for reconciliations seriously.

Karua said the gesture for reconciliation should not be trivialised by asking President Kibaki to resign, saying the results of the election could only be altered by a court of law once the Electoral Commission had declared them.

Speaking at her office in Nairobi on Tuesday, Karua said the law did not provide for formation of a commission of inquiry to audit the results.

“Inquiry is done by a court of law where the aggrieved party opens a petition. We cannot alter the results. Only a court can do so, Karua said.

The minister said it was not true that there was abnormal high voter turnout in President Kibakis stronghold, adding that even experts had predicted that many people would cast their votes.

Karua said she was present when ECK scrutinised the results from the 210 constituencies where ODM and PNU were represented and it was agreed that the results be announced.

She, however, called for calm and end to the violence.

Karua said PNU and ODM must find a way of moving forward for the sake of the country. “Winners and losers must forge ahead. We still need to work together. Even in Parliament we need to have Government and Opposition, Karua said.

She said even pollsters had predicted presidency could go either way.

Karua said voter turnout was higher in ODM stronghold than PNUs and that nobody raised eyebrows.

Present at her office were Assistant ministers, Mr Mwangi Kiunjuri, Mr A A Hassan and Mr Stephen Tarus, MP-elects Mr Eugene Wamalwa, Mr Ken Nzioka and Mr George Nyamweya.

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Kivuitu, seems to be having a second thought about the presidential results

Posted by African Press International on January 2, 2008

He has told journalists that he announced the results under duress. He may be changing his mind because of the pressure from the west. It is too late now to look back.

The country should move forward and let the president embark on the job that is waiting and continue to serve the Kenyan people.

Violence must be condemned by all peace loving people. The police has done the right thing by refusing parties to have political meetings and rallies.

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The standard story:

I acted under a pressure, says Kivuitu

By Isaac OngiriOn Tuesday night, Mr Samuel Kivuitu made a damning admission that he announced results of the fiercely contested presidential election under pressure.The announcement plunged the country into a post-election violence of a scale never witnessed before.The magnitude of the Electoral Commission chairmans admission and the further dent on the credibility of the election was captured in his answer when asked if indeed President Kibaki won the elections: “I do not know whether Kibaki won the election”.Kivuitu continued with his stunning revelations when he said he took the presidential election winners certificate to State House, Nairobi, after “some people threatened to collect it while Im the one mandated by law to do so”.

“I arrived at State House to take the certificate and I found the Chief Justice there, ready to swear-in Kibaki,” Kivuitu said.

On claims that he was under undue pressure to declare results, Kivuitu said: “Some PNU (Party of National Unity) and ODM-Kenya leaders put me under pressure by calling me frequently, asking me to announce the results immediately”.

President Kibaki ran for re-election on a Party of National Unity ticket, while Mr Kalonzo Musyoka, made his bid on an ODM-Kenya ticket. Mr Raila Odinga, who has said he was robbed of victory, ran on an Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) ticket.

On Tuesday, Kivuitu said the alleged pressure to declare results came in the wake of parallel pressure from a number of ambassadors from the European Union countries and Mr Maina Kiai of the Kenya National Commission on Human Rights not to announce the results until complaints, which arose, were addressed.

“I had thought of resigning, but thought against it because I dont want people to say Im a coward,” he said. The embattled ECK chairman made the revelations shortly after meeting with 22 ECK commissioners.

On Tuesday, Kivuitu conceded that matters that arose from the poll results were so urgent that they should be taken to court, and the ruling done with minimum delay to ease national tension.

Court settlement

“If this matter is finally taken to court, the ruling should be made urgently so that if it were decided that Raila is the President, so be it. If it is Kibaki, so be it,” he added. Kivuitu said he made the decision, whose far-reaching implications are now being felt across the country. He said he announced the results because the commission had no legal mandate to investigate complaints raised by the opposition immediately.Kivuitu fell short of naming the individuals from the two parties PNU and ODM-Kenya who coerced him to announce the disputed poll outcome, but went on to announce that the commission was consulting eminent lawyers over the next course of action “so that its actions remain within the law”.

The EU observer team has discredited the poll results and urged for an independent audit.

On his part, Kivuitu said he backed independent investigation into what may have happened, but added that this would be only if the law would provide for it.

“We are culprits as a commission. We have to leave it to an independent group to investigate what actually went wrong,” the chairman said, stunning local and international journalists, who had gathered at his Nairobi residence.

It has also emerged that some countries concerned with the poll outcome, like South Africa, had sent in their electoral officials to the country.

Kivuitu said the officials would be arriving on Wednesday “to look into the matter”.

On Tuesday, Kivuitu was in a meeting with his 22 commissioners, which his deputy, Mr Kihara Muttu, described as “a house-keeping meeting”.

In a signed statement, the 22 commissioners condemned the violence, which up to last night had claimed the lives of about 300 people.

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