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Posts Tagged ‘Migori’

Kenya: Veteran journalist hospitalised

Posted by African Press International on July 18, 2013

Kisumu City based veteran journalist Leo Odera Omollo has been hospitalised. Odera now aged 76 was hospitalised a fortnight ago at Milimani hospital Kisumu ailing from multiple ailments like mild stroke, hypertension, brain tumour, and diabetes. The mercurial scribe known for his prolific political analysis is a freelance and subscribes to both local and International media outlets.

He has locally worked for the Nation media Group,the then East African Standard,defunct Kenya Times and the Weekly Citizen. In the foreign outlets he is affiliated to the Guardian Newspaper of London, the New York Times (USA), among other online media. Odera has also written for this Online media outlet (API). During his hey days he was closely associated with the late Thomas Joseph Mboya, The doyen of Kenyas opposition politics the late Jaramogi Oginga Odinga, former President Daniel Arap Moi, Kanu mandarins the late Dr Taita Arap Towett and Ezekiel Barngatuny.

Odera hails from Uriri constituency Migori County. During a visit by the press early this week Odera was looking frail though stable and could recognise some of his colleagues. “Mzee has now made a bit of progress comparatively”, said his wife who was glued besides him in his hospital bed.




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Kenya: Polio vaccination targetting 750,000 children

Posted by African Press International on July 3, 2013

  • By Maurice Alal, In Kenya.

THE government targets to vaccinate 750,000 children under the age of 5 years against polio infection in four counties out of the six in Nyanza region.

The outgoing Nyanza Director for Public Health and Sanitation Dr Jackson Kioko said the vaccination will kick off on July 6 to July 10, 2013.

Dr Kioko said the exercise will be conducted in Migori, Homabay, Kisumu and Siaya counties to prevent the children against polio infection.

He disclosed that extensive mapping is being carried out by district public health officers in these counties to identify where the children are.

He said awareness campaign is going on in the markets, schools, public chief barazas and churches to encourage parents to avail their children for the vaccination.

“We want parents to understand the importance of polio vaccination to protect the children against the infection,” he said.

He stated that the vaccination will be conducted door to door saying they will mark the households that children have already been vaccinated.

According to Dr Kioko polio prevention has improved tremendously since 2010 which is above the national index.

He disclosed that Nyanza region stand at 90% under the Oral Polio Vaccine 1 and 81% under the Oral Polio Vaccine 3.

He said the national index stand at 80% under the Oral Polio Vaccine 3 and called upon health providers in the counties to ensure they hit 90% target.

The medic appealed to the parents, chiefs and other stakeholders to bring their children under the age of five for the vaccination.

He said the street children will not be left out in the exercise saying they are working closely with the children departments in these counties see them vaccinated.

“Street children need a lot of medical attention given the risk they undergo in their daily lives,” he said.



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Kenya: Child labour hit Counties in Nyanza Region due to poverty.

Posted by African Press International on May 29, 2013

  • By Maurice Alal, API Kenya

At the age of 11 Joyce Adhiambo*, a resident of Homabay Town, wakes up at 4.30 am each day and tramps to a nearby river to fetch water for his bosses before embarking to firewood. Adhiambo also helps prepare and serve the family with meals and sweeps the whole compound among other chores.
Surprisingly, Adhiambo has no shoes but a half-heel chopped off red flappers which she uses to protect her cracked feet. She narrates that she found herself in this horrible situation four years ago at a tender age of 8 years after she lost both of her parents due to HIV.
After the death of her parents Adhiambo was adopted by her aunts in Homabay but her stay there was short-lived. Circumstances forced her to quit the place due to harassment from family members.
The poor girl while at her aunt’s place, she was forced to sleep on an empty sack.  Narrating to this scribe, the young girl said was often beaten up on the slightest provocation of her aunt who forced her to feed on leftovers that dropped from the family table.


Now Adhiambo is a young domestic worker who does know her fate. The child labor, which is now broadly defined as the employment of minors, is often a harsh and most exploitative condition among children.
But the vice has remained in practical both in developing and even industrial countries. The human cost of child labour leaves the victims gaunt, crippled, illiterate and sick.
International Labour Organization (ILO) that was founded in 1919 has since transformed into special agency of the United Nations (UN).The introduction of child labour conventions by ILO among members, including a minimum age of 16 years for admission to all kinds of work. While others including a higher minimum age for particular employment, medical examination and regulation of right work.
In early 21st Century, ILO was compelled to add the worst forms of child labour to its list including slavery, debt bondage (where children work to pay off loans owed by parents) prostitution and forced military services.
A growing concern now in Homabay County has been the increase in prostitution among young girls in urban areas especially in drinking spree. Some of the children have been forced in the ugly practice due to abject poverty.
The 1997 UNICEF report concerning child labour stated most employers try to hire workers who are easier or cheap to exploit. It was also estimated that over 3 million minors in Kenya engage in child labour, usually working under hazardous conditions.
The report also highlighted that the most vulnerable and weakest workers are children usually paid less than the adults and are often ignorant on their rights or how to protest against poor working environment.
“Poverty plays an enormous role in the phenomenon. Desperate for money, poor families around the world including Kenya are forced to push minors to increase overall income among the families. “The report read in part.
The poor families, the small contributions of child’s income or the assistance can make a huge difference between a bare sufficiency and hunger, the survey reveals.
In various towns of Homabay County, a stroll in the streets at night leaves one gasping for breath over the ages of girls frequently visiting clubs at night for prostitution.
A study carried town in seven districts in Kenya in 1997 by child Welfare Society of Kenya indicated that child prostitution is widely practiced in big towns. Some victims were as young as 11 years old. Malindi and Mombasa peaked underage children selling sex.
In Nairobi, the number of street children has risen to 60,000 with the Government estimating their numbers to grow at 10 percent annually. The children are often involved in drug trafficking, assault, theft, trespass and property damaging.
A survey carried out in 1996 in a lower class estate in Nairobi found that 30% of households employed children. In 1997 the figured dropped by 12%.

And in Homabay, about 30 children are in the streets in search for food with majority being young girls. Kisumu City is not spared either with about 30% who are at the age of going to school.


According to business fraternity street children have now become a menace as they steal from them to have a bit due to hardship they undergo.
In Kenya, a study of girls working as housemaids found out that 25 girls aged 9-16 years, 18 were HIV positive. Most of the girls had worked in homes had reported sexual abuse in all or most of them.
Statistics available in labour officer in Homabay region indicates that more than 15,000 underage girls in the region have been lured or forced into commercial sex work by wealth men.
According to Mary Achieng, a child rights activists in Homabay County, says that apart from prostitution, a high percentage of underage children in the region are involved in stone crashing, charcoal kilns and bricking making as others are employed as housemaids.
On the other hand, a survey in six districts in Homabay County reveals that most children drop out of school due to a rigid curriculum to an extent they prefer to look interesting jobs.
And in Kisumu City, Children are not spared either with some going sleepless night along the streets hawking boiled maize to earn a living.
Meet Josephine Atieno (not her real name), a former class 5 who had to drop out of school after the death of her parents to provide for  her younger siblings.
Atieno now sells boiled maize throughout the night at bar parks, clubs and stage especially to bar goers, bodaboda and matatu operators who lure them to sexual activities.
According to Atieno, she is just one of the examples of children hawking various food stuffs to have a meal on the table, a spot check by the writer shows that a good number of boys and girls are full in the streets across the Nyanza region.
Some of the children are sent to collect scrap metals by dealers only to be attacked by the owners who seriously assault them.
The hardship has now forced a good number of children to the streets in various counties such as Kisii, Kisumu, Homabay, Migori, Siaya and Nyamira thereby increasing the number of street children in the region.
Some of the children have now embarked on Commercial Sex at various clubs I the streets of Kisumu, Homabay Kisii among others without proper knowledge of HIV.
In every 20 of the girls in the social areas 10 are miners who have dropped out of school because of poverty and death of their parents.
According to these children, they are not in such kind of activities because they want but due to pathetic conditions and difficulties they are undergoing.
A spot check in Kisii, Migori and Nyamira the story replays the same scenario with some being used by drug peddlers to sneak drugs to their destinations.
This exposes them to greatest danger of drugs. This is rampant especially in Migori as it borders Kenya and Tanzania. The same story replays in Rachuonyo North District with children involved in fishing and harvesting sand to make a living. Some risking their lives by going inside the caves.
But along the lake shore of Lake Victoria children are fishing just to feed their siblings with some spending money they get to buy sex from commercial sex workers in these beaches.
This now calls for immediately concerned by the Children Department in the 6 Counties to ensure the well-being of children are catered for, this is according to various activists based in Kisumu and Homabay.


In tackling the poverty level in the counties, Governor Homabay Cyprian Awiti said his government is set to allocate about 30% to eradicate poverty through loaning the residents to start-up small business activities to earn a living. This now call for solidarity among the governors in Nyanza region to fight poverty so as to reduce cases of child labour, this according to Awiti.



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Kenya: Desist from Drug Abuse Kisumu County Youths told

Posted by African Press International on May 23, 2013

  • By Maurice Alal, API Kenya

Youths in Kisumu County have been told to desist from drug abuse and engage in productive activities that will change their lives.

National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug (NACADA) Nyanza Regional Manager Esther Salim Okenye said there is high rate of drug abuse in the six counties. - National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug (NACADA) Nyanza Regional Manager Esther Salim Okenye – National Authority for the Campaign against Alcohol and Drug (NACADA) Nyanza Regional Manager Esther Salim Okenye

Okenye urged youths to go for loans to start-up small business saying the government is set to allocate funds to empower them in a bid to curb the rampant vice of dependency in the societies.

The National statistics of drug and alcohol abuse stands at 13 % meaning in every 100 people 13 are involved in drugs abuse. “This is high rate that call for immediate address by all stakeholders,” Okenye said.

She stated there is need for more sensitization of youths on drug and alcohol abuse adding that people between the age of 15- 65 are involved in drugs.

Okenye adds that in Nyanza, alcohol and bhang is the mostly abused by people especially youths. “We are second in bhang abuse after Western region,” she revealed.

In curbing the misuse of drugs NACADA has now embark on awareness creation through competition such as choir, music and ball games to bring youths together in all the 47 counties.

Okenye said the authority is currently undertaking various competition targeting youths in Siaya, Kisumu, Nyamira, Migori, Kisii and Nyamira Counties with winners proceeding to perform at national level.

She made remarks during Kisumu County Choir Competition on Alcohol and Drug Abuse held at Social hold where over 200 youths attended.

During the competition Ngege Youth Group Choir emerged the winner with Kobala Youth Group from Homabay County in second position.

The two groups will represent their counties at regional level before proceeding to national level.



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Kenya: Nyanza Administration Police Commandant under probe for snatching one’s wife.

Posted by African Press International on April 1, 2013

The Government has launched investigations against Nyanza Administration Police Commander James Mwaniki over claims of attempting to snatch someone’s wife in Kisumu. Nyanza Administration Police Commander James Mwaniki Nyanza Administration Police Commander James Mwaniki

This is after an employee of a security firm in the city petitioned the Nyanza Provincial Commissioner Francis Mutie’s office claiming the senior officer was breaking his family.
In a letter dated March 25, 2013, titled ‘breakage of my marriage,’ and addressed to Mutie, the man seeks to know why the officer wants to break his marriage.
The wife is also an Administration Police officer in Kisumu the rank of a Corporal.
The letter also copied to the Nyanza Provincial Police officer Joseph Ole Tito reads in part; “Sir, as stated above, kindly assist me through your able office to know why a very senior police officer, James Mwaniki wants to break my marriage with my wife.”
He says they have been blessed with three children and would not wish to break his family. On the letter, a marriage certificate between the man and the corporal AP officer is attached.
The man further states that his wife is not Mwaniki’s escort but has been going out with him and spending night-outs without his knowledge.
“On March 2, 2013 they went to Muhuru bay and later spent a night in Migori until the following morning of March 3,” states the letter.
He says the officer at one time also called his wife with whom they spend close to eight hours at night at a club in APs camp in Shauri Moyo AP line where they reside.
“Mwaniki send an officer to call my wife. When I asked her where she was going, she said that the boss wants her to go and open for him a beer,” said the wife’s husband, adding that the wife left at 6pm and came back to the house at 1 am in the night.
According to laws and regulation of the APs, a senior officer of his rank should not be in the AP line unless on a special duty. He has been reportedly going there with reports indicating that he even sends junior officers out of the club to pave way for him and the lovebird.
The AP boss who is reportedly referred to by his junior officers as libidious is said to have been involved with three female officers based at the PC’s office. Two female officers have children with their husbands.

According to their husbands, complains have been raised over the officer’s behavior with their legally married wives.
This has even created animosity among the two latest female catch of Mr. Mwaniki. They are said to be in bad terms with each other as they are fighting over the man.
However, the junior officers have also alleged that he has been mobilizing officers to attack the husband (complainant) on the eve of, and after, the incident in order to cover his behavior. This, he did when addressing a parade at Kisumu East District and Provincial headquarters.
“We turned down such orders as we could not involve in wrong doings of somebody who wants to break the marriage of other people,” claimed the officers who could not be named due to security reasons.
When contacted whether they have received the copy of the letter, Nyanza PC Francis Mutie consented and said they have launched investigations into the matter.
“I have received a copy of the letter and even interviewed the husband over the allegations. After proper investigations I assure you action must be taken,” the PC said.
Nyanza Police boss Joseph Ole Tito also confirmed receipt of a copy of the letter. “I have seen the letter and the truth is that we belong to different departments.
It is therefore up to the Administration department to get to the bottom of the matter and make a decision concerning the allegations,” Ole Tito told API on phone when contacted for comment.
However, efforts to reach Mwaniki for comment regarding the accusations were futile by the time of going to press.


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