NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
regional summit on refugee situation in Somalia on Saturday
proposed the establishment of a trust fund to help the
reconstruction of the Horn of Africa nation.
Uhuru Kenyatta who hosted the Inter-governmental Authority on
Development (IGAD) Special Summit on Somalia said mobilization
of financial resources is a crucial component in the re-building
of social and economic infrastructure in Somalia.
“In this regard, I
propose the establishment of a Trust Fund for the reconstruction
of Somalia under the auspices of IGAD,” Kenyatta told leaders
from Uganda, South Sudan, Somalia, Djibouti and Ethiopia.
international humanitarian agencies to relocate back to Somalia
as the Horn of Africa nation embarks on reconstruction path.
Kenyatta said the
trust fund would mobilize resources for the provision of
adequate housing, education facilities, healthcare centres and
livelihood activities among others.
international community to join us in this initiative. Now that
Somalia is stabilizing we must, all, stand in solidarity with
our brothers and sisters,” he said.
Kenya hosted IGAD
summit that brought together Eastern African heads of state to
discuss the situation of Somali refugees in the region, as the
threat of pervasive drought and food insecurity in Somalia
The East African
nation’s role as host is marred by its continued insistence on
closing Dadaab refugee camp, host to over 300,000 Somali
refugees, by May.
Kenyatta said the
remittances from Somalia’s Diaspora can be tapped as part of a
framework for rebuilding.
“We are informed by
the World Bank that in 2015, Somalia received 1.4 billion U.S.
dollars in remittances, which is almost a quarter of its Gross
Domestic Product (GDP),” he said.
The Kenyan leader
told the summit that there is also an available solution in the
utilization of accelerated resettlement to third countries, as
stipulated in the 1951 Refugee Convention.
“It is my hope that
partner countries will open their doors to increase their
resettlement quarter for Somali refugees,” he said.
Somalia urges relief agencies
By David Musyoka NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi
Mohamed on Saturday called on humanitarian and development
actors working on Somalia to return to help in the
reconstruction of the Horn of Africa nation.
Speaking at the
Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Special Summit
of Regional Heads of State on durable solutions for the
protracted Somali refugee situation in Nairobi, Mohamed said
several parts of Somalia are largely peaceful despite attacks
from the militants.
“We understand that
there are serious security limitations in certain areas, but the
vast majority of our country is relatively peaceful. And
experience shows us that, when partners operate within Somalia,
their impact is qualitatively better than those operating
remotely,” Mohamed said.
He pledged to
increase security for all relief agencies in the Horn of Africa
nation and promised to fix humanitarian challenges to enable
agencies to work from inside Somalia.
The Horn of Africa
nation has been mired in conflict since civil war broke out in
1991 and is one of the most difficult countries for relief
agencies to operate in.
The UN says over 100
violent incidents resulted in the death of nine, injury of 11,
arrest and detention of 16, abduction of three and physical
assault of five humanitarian personnel also took place by
The Islamist group
Al-Shabaab which is fighting to topple the Western-backed
government has been targeting humanitarian workers for political
gain, sometimes demanding ransom in order to free the hostages.
Mohamed said his
government will implement various projects and programs in
partnership with the agencies.
will empower relevant line ministries to cooperate with all of
you. And we will hold each other accountable to achieving
declared objectives,” he said.
He said the problem
of Somali refugees in the region has been going on for far too
long and urged international community to move swiftly to find a
lasting solution to the menace.
“I’m confident that
you will continue to honor the institution of asylum as
enshrined in the international humanitarian conventions and
maintain our people in safety and dignity in the best tradition
of African hospitality,” Mohamed told the summit.
“From our side, we
will increase our effort to jointly achieve the objective of
this conference on the voluntary return of our people in a safe
and dignified manner, and to provide durable solutions so that
they can participate in the rebuilding of a prosperous and
peaceful Somalia at peace and harmony with itself and its
neighbors,” he added.
UNHCR urges strong support to
stabilize Somalia, countries hosting refugees
NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
The UN refugee agency on Saturday appealed for support for
efforts aimed at bringing greater stability inside Somalia, and
to the countries hosting Somali refugees.
United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)’s Assistant High Commissioner
for Operations, George Okoth-Obbo lauded Somalia’s neighbors for
their generosity in providing protection to refugees in spite of
their own socio-economic, national security and environmental
He said countries
hosting Somali refugees have to find alternative solutions for
them locally, focusing on the socio-economic inclusion of
refugees side by side with resilience support for host
“We invite the
countries to also consider local integration, especially for
refugees who have integrated, for example, those married to
nationals,” Okoth-Obbo told the Intergovernmental Authority on
Development (IGAD) Special Summit of Regional Heads of State on
durable solutions for the protracted Somali refugee situation in
He said the UN
refugee agency is delighted by this unprecedented regional
effort that commits to providing collective protection and
assistance to Somali refugees.
UNHCR called for
global responsibility sharing with the region, where communities
have been hosting and sharing limited resources with Somali
refugees for years.
appealed for the need to preserve asylum space for Somali
refugees unable to return home.
Over 2 million
Somalis have been displaced in one of the world’s most
protracted displacement crises.
There are an
estimated 1 million internally displaced persons within Somalia
and 900,000 Somali refugees - many now third generation - in
Kenya (324,000), Ethiopia (241,000), Yemen (255,000), Uganda
(39,500) and Djibouti (13,000).
returns continue, security, access and absorption limitations
restrict the scale of returns to Somalia at the present moment.
highlighted the importance of creating predictable peace,
security, social and community conditions, for Somalis in the
country and refugees whose decision to return, can thus be more
sustainable,” Okoth-Obbo said.
highlighted that voluntary return is not the exclusive option
and has urged heightened international solidarity and
responsibility sharing through continued resettlement of Somali
refugees and provision of complementary pathways for third
country admissions - such as medical evacuation and humanitarian
admission programmes, family reunification and opportunities for
skilled migration, labour mobility and education.
Okoth-Obbo also said
the drought which has affected some 6.2 million people, half of
Somalia’s population, is a serious issue and finding solutions
must be accelerated.
“We need to
recognize that the region faces new challenges, such as the
current drought and food insecurity, gripping the region,
threatening starvation and death,” he said.
conditions across the region have led to food crises in
Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, and Yemen. Countries are facing the
worst drought in 60 years.
UNHCR is urging the
need for an immediate scale up of the response to the drought to
mitigate and avert famine to reduce its adverse humanitarian
“Time is of the
essence and resolute action by humanitarian actors, strongly
supported by the international community, is required,”
Refugee situation in East
Africa alarming: UNHCR
DAR ES SALAAM, (Xinhua) --
The United Nations said on Sunday the refugee
situation in East Africa and the Horn of Africa was alarming.
situation of refugees in the region is caused by grave food
shortage and armed conflicts,” said Victoria Akyeampong, the
Head of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
for East, Horn of Africa and the Great Lakes region.
She said the
situation was equally worrying in the Great Lakes region,
another flash point of political violence in the continent
pitting militia groups and the government forces.
“The situation is
too alarming. We have to develop a mechanism on how to address
the crisis,” said Akyeampong on a visit to the East African
Community (EAC) headquarters in Tanzania’s northern tourist town
The UNHCR regional
boss and the EAC Secretary General Liberat Mfumukeko agreed to
form a task force to develop and implement the regional
mechanism on management of refugees.
“I am happy today
that we have agreed to work together. Our region has for a long
time suffered a lot in the context of refugees and that explains
why we in the EAC look at the refugee issue as one of the
critical areas of regional integration,” said Mfumukeko.
EAC and UNHCR have a
Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by both parties in
March 2010 which established a framework for cooperation in
areas of conflict prevention, peace building, early warning and
response and movement of persons, among others.
6 killed, 12 injured in church
in Burundi’s Bubanza province: official
BUJUMBURA, (Xinhua) --
At least six people died and 12 others were
injured when a church building under construction collapsed on
Saturday at Muramba in Bubanza province, 35km west of the
Burundian capital Bujumbura, local administration authorities
“The church building
under construction collapsed around noon when agents were at
work. Six people died on the spot when one of the walls fell on
them. Twelve others were injured, five of them seriously,”
Bubanza Governor Tharcisse Niyongabo said.
According to him,
injured victims were rushed to Bubanza Hospital for urgent
that the Burundi Red Cross helped during the operation to rescue
He added that the
six killed victims include three men, two women and a child.
News Analysis: Opening new
humanitarian corridor adds
momentum to int’l efforts to ease famine in South Sudan
KHARTOUM, (Xinhua) --
At a time when international efforts are growing
to ease the impact of famine in South Sudan, Khartoum’s
agreement to open a new humanitarian corridor adds momentum to
the ongoing relief activities and saves plenty of time and
On Sunday, the
Sudanese government said it agreed on opening a new corridor via
El Obied, Heglig, Rubkona and Bentiu for delivery of
humanitarian aid to the population affected by famine in South
Sudan’s Unity and Greater Bahr el Ghazal States.
Aid Commissioner Ahmed Mohamed Adam said Khartoum’s agreement
came because of the humanitarian crisis in South Sudan, adding
that delivery of the humanitarian aid through the new corridor
would begin this week.
Khartoum has also
agreed to re-open the river corridor linking Kosti town in
central Sudan and South Sudan’s river ports, on condition that
Juba returns 11 river boats seized earlier.
humanitarian corridor would help deliver food aid on time and
reduce the reliance on airlift, which costs six to seven times
as much as by river and road.
Marta Ruedas, the
United Nations Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator in Sudan,
welcomed on Sunday Sudan’s decision to open a new humanitarian
corridor to South Sudan, where 100,000 people are suffering
famine amid a deepening humanitarian crisis across the country.
“By opening this
cross-border corridor, the government of Sudan is showing its
commitment to the people of South Sudan and further
strengthening cooperation with the international community to
pull South Sudan back from a widening famine that could affect
another one million people,” said Ruedas in a press release.
“This decision also
comes at a critical time just before South Sudan’s rainy season,
which starts in May and usually renders these roads impassable,”
This week, the
United Nations World Food Program (WFP) will deliver 11,000 tons
of sorghum, which is enough to feed 300,000 people for three
months, to famine-afflicted areas in South Sudan, according to
At least 7.5 million
people across South Sudan, almost two thirds of the population,
need humanitarian assistance, WFP said.
South Sudan said
earlier that about five million people are at risk of famine,
which has hit two areas in Unity State and is spreading to
Northern Bahr el Ghazal State.
The famine in South
Sudan was attributed to many reasons including the civil war and
collapse of the economy in the new-born state.
Sudan, Chad, France work
together to rescue kidnapped French national
KHARTOUM, (Xinhua) --
Sudan’s Foreign Ministry said on Sunday that
Sudan, French intelligence and Chad are working together to
locate a French national who was kidnapped in Chad and carried
“The Ministry of
Foreign Affairs, the National Intelligence and Security Service
and the Armed Forces have been notified about the French
hostage,” Sudan’s Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour told
coordinating with the concerned authorities in France, including
the French intelligence, and the Chadian government via the
Sudanese-Chadian Forces to bring back the French hostage,” he
Chadian Chief of
Security Ahmed Mohammed Bashir said earlier that a French
national working for a mining company in Chad was abducted some
200 km south of the Chadian city of Abeche on Thursday and moved
to Sudan later.
Uganda president leaves for
regional summit on Somali refugee crisis
KAMPALA, (Xinhua) --
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni on Friday left
for neighboring Kenya where he will meet his counterparts to
discuss solutions to the Somali refugee crisis.
scheduled for Saturday will bring together heads of state of
member countries of the Inter-Governmental Authority on
Development, the international community and other stakeholders.
The summit aims to
marshal a comprehensive regional approach to deliver durable
solutions for Somali refugees whilst promoting sustainable re-
integration of returnees in Somalia.
UN figures show more
than two million Somalis have been displaced in one of the
world’s most protracted humanitarian crises that has now entered
its third decade.
An estimated 1.1
million Somalis are internally displaced inside the Horn of
Africa nation and some 900,000 are refugees in neighboring
countries, Ethiopia, Djibouti, Kenya and Uganda.
Egypt jails 56 people over
migrant shipwreck killing 203
CAIRO, (Xinhua) --
An Egyptian court sentenced 56 people to 2 to 13
years in prison over a migrant shipwreck that killed 203 people
last year, state-run MENA news agency reported.
The defendants were
accused of involuntary manslaughter, fraud and illegal
employment of workers, according to MENA.
In September last
year, a migrant boat bound for Italy drowned near the coast of
Egypt’s northern Beheira province with some 600 people onboard.
The European Union’s
border agency Frontex warned that growing numbers of migrants
bound for Europe were turning to Egypt as a departure point for
the sea voyage.
via Egyptian Mediterranean Sea shores rose over the past few
years in attempts to reach Europe and flee difficult economic
conditions in the most populous Arab country.
CAIRO, (Xinhua) --
Egyptian rescuers search for survivors at
the site of a collapsed building in Cairo’s Boulaq
district, Egypt on March 26, 2017. Two buildings collapsed
in Cairo’s Boulaq district leaving at least one dead and
seven injured. Another building collapsed last Friday in
Cairo’s Garden City district.
Egypt jails ex-chief of
journalists union over cover-up charge
CAIRO, (Xinhua) --
An Egyptian court on Saturday sentenced the
former head of the Journalists Union and two board members a
year in jail on charges of harboring colleagues wanted by the
law, official news agency MENA reported.
The sentence in
November for the three journalists Yehia Qalah, Khalid al-Balshy
and Gamal Abdel Rahim was two years in jail, MENA said.
sentence was handed without labor, so according to Egyptian
laws, the three journalists won’t be imprisoned but banned from
travel for three years, in case they are charged in any other
The case dates back
to May 2, 2016, when the police raided the Egyptian syndicate to
arrest two opposition journalists, Mahmoud al-Sakka and Amr Badr,
who took shelter inside the premise.
condemned the raid, saying it’s the first time the syndicate has
been stormed in its history, but the interior ministry said
Sakka and Badr were arrested on criminal charges.
Uganda sets up task force to
combat army worm outbreak
KAMPALA, (Xinhua) --
Uganda has set up national task force to combat
the outbreak of army-worms in the east African country.
minister of agriculture in a statement issued on Friday said the
task force will develop action plans for effective management of
the army-worm both in the short and long term periods.
He said the ministry
of agriculture as an emergency measure is going to buy
pesticides known to have worked successfully elsewhere in the
control of army worms.
He said government
will also procure motorized pumps and all other related items.
He urged farmers and
the general public to promptly report any outbreaks for guidance
on the interim measures of managing the pest.
Government has set
aside one billion shillings (over 285,700 U.S. dollars) to
control the pest.
Ssempijja said the
presence of the army-worms poses an export risk for the country
which would have a negative effect on foreign exchange earnings.
The outbreak was
first reported in Uganda in 2016 in three districts. It has now
spread to over 20 districts.
agriculture has so far confirmed damages on maize and sugarcane
crops,” the statement said.
government is yet to establish the impact of the pest in Uganda
but based on their effects elsewhere, the impact may be huge.
“Based on the
estimated yield loss of 15 percent -75 percent elsewhere, the
presence of the army-worm in Uganda could translate to an annual
loss of at least 450,000 metric tonnes of maize that is
equivalent to almost 200 million dollars.
according to ministry of agriculture, are only reflective of
maize however the pest affects more crops heightening the
potential loss to the economy.
Feature: From Germany to Egypt,
lady Didi teaches
village children from alphabet to life skills
By Mahmoud Fouly GIZA, Egypt, (Xinhua)
-- Behind a colorful hand-made wooden
gate painted with drawings of a river with running boats
surrounded by flowers and flying birds, there opens the way to
achieve the dreams of the children of a small Egyptian village
for learning their ABCs as well as the value of life.
Diana Sandor, known
as Didi, an old Hungarian-born German-raised woman, covered the
long distance from West to East six years ago to open her Nile
River School as a charitable kindergarten and educational center
at the heart of remote, impoverished Baharwa village of Ayyat
district on the outskirts of Giza Province, about 100 km south
of the Egyptian capital Cairo.
Didi said she
started building the center “brick by brick,” through little
donations from friends and volunteers around the world and that
she is concerned with “teaching children life,” not just
languages and skills.
She explained that a
British female friend who lived in Egypt helped her find this
place in the village.
“In the village, we
just wanted to find out what the problems and the needs of the
people are. They said they need a school and they don’t have
one. Because I am into the education world, I thought of
starting a school here like I did in other places around the
world,” the woman told Xinhua with a peaceful smile on her face.
greenery and flowers and overlooking the Nile River bank at a
village with high illiteracy and limited services and
educational opportunities, Didi’s center has indoor and outdoor
spaces for activities like learning Arabic and English
alphabets, painting, singing, playing the piano, doing clay
formation, knitting, cooking and carpentry.
“I learned here
English and I knew how to perform some songs in English. All I
learned here helped me at my regular school. A lot of parents
come here to thank Didi for teaching their children and for
coloring the fronts of their homes,” said 12-year-old girl Menna
Another girl, Farha
Moussa, 11, was shaping the clay in her hands into a bird. She
said she learned at Didi’s how to draw, sing and make paper
roses besides reading and writing in both Arabic and English.
Coming to this small
village in Egypt is not a whim of Didi, who left her normal
social life in Germany when she was 22 to travel to India and
learn meditation and yoga. She also spent 16 years living in
Asian countries providing similar charitable services. Didi said
Egypt for her was “a new culture and a new challenge.”
“I wanted to find
myself, to realize myself. I questioned my purpose and mission
in life. Through that, I devoted my whole life to development. I
have lived in different countries in the world, so I feel
everywhere at home. I consider the whole world my family,” she
Opened a year after
Didi’s arrival in Egypt in 2011, the center attracts from 60 to
120 children every year. Some of the kids at the school have
grown up to become teachers for younger children and assist Didi
with her educational activities and caretaking of the place.
“I studied with Didi
here for four years and I am now a senior student at a regular
preparatory school. I feel it is my duty to come here and assist
Didi as she helped me with education,” said 16-year-old girl
Ahlam Ghanem, a resident of Baharwa village.
teachers do not have to be teens or grownups. They still can be
children who teach fellow children, as long as they are smart,
diligent and hardworking, like this little boy who teaches his
peers the Arabic alphabet.
“I teach the
children the Arabic alphabet to be good and nice. I also know
how to sing and many other things,” shy eight-year-old boy Zeyad
In the beginning,
Didi considered carrying out her charitable project in Cairo.
But when she saw the peaceful scenery of Baharwa village she
thought it would be more attractive for volunteers and young
Yasmine Refaat, a
volunteer from Cairo in her late 20s, has been spending the past
two days reading for the children from storybooks and helping
them with the rehearsal of a kids’ play they are supposed to
perform once they are ready.
volunteers make a difference for the children who are so curious
when they see a new visitor. It’s important for them to see some
new people who come from outside their village to help and teach
them,” the young woman said.
GIZA (EGYPT), (Xinhua) --
Lady Didi (L) teaches children how to shape clay at
her Nile River School in Ayyat district on the outskirts
of Giza Province, about 100 km south of Cairo, capital of
Egypt, on March 26, 2017. Diana Sandor, known as Didi, an
old Hungarian-born German-raised woman, covered the long
distance from West to East six years ago to open her Nile
River School as a charitable kindergarten and educational
center at the heart of remote, impoverished Baharwa
village of Ayyat district on the outskirts of Giza
Province, about 100 km south of the Egyptian capital
Cairo. Didi said she started building the center “brick by
brick,” through little donations from friends and
volunteers around the world and that she is concerned with
“teaching children life,” not just languages and skills.
XINHUA PHOTO: ZHAO DINGZHE
S. Africa saves 420MW during
JOHANNESBURG, (Xinhua) --
South Africa’s power utility, Eskom said Sunday
the country saved 420 MW during the Earth Hour on Saturday
This comes after
they had encouraged citizens to join the global community by
switching off lights, non-essential electrical gadgets and make
noise for climate change action on Saturday night between 20:30
to 21:30 p.m.
Eskom then compared
the consumption on Saturday during the Earth Hour against
typical consumption for this time on an average Saturday
In a statement
issued on Sunday Eskom said, “South Africans took action against
climate change on Saturday evening when they switched off their
lights for Earth Hour from 20:30 to 21:30, saving an average of
420 MW during the hour. This is enough to power a city the size
of Polokwane or Port Elizabeth (medium South Africa cities) for
Eskom said they are
using Earth Hour by using its power to showcase the contribution
to South Africa’s journey in meeting sustainable development
The power utility
encouraged South Africans to make energy efficiency and
environmental conservation part of their daily lifestyles.
encouraged people to reduce their energy consumption every day
by using electricity efficiently, switching off all
non-essential lights and appliances.
Earth Hour started
in 2007 in Sydney, Australia, and it is organized by the World
Wide Fund to raise awareness about climate change. Over 162
countries and territories worldwide are part of this initiative.
Tanzanian parliament to review
to control exports of copper concentrates
DAR ES SALAAM, (Xinhua) --
Tanzanian parliament said on Sunday it will
review the east African country’s mining contracts with foreign
firms aimed at improving proper documentation of exported copper
concentrates for the benefit of the country.
action came just a day after the Tanzania Ports Authority (TPA)
in collaboration with security agents impounded over 260
export-bound shipping containers with copper concentrates from
Buzwagi Gold Mine (BZGM) stored in Dar es Salaam.
Last week, Tanzanian
President John Magufuli visited the Dar es Salaam port and
ordered the seizure of 20 containers ferrying copper
concentrates from the same mining firm.
On Sunday, President
Magufuli sacked the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of
Energy and Minerals, Justin Ntalikwa, apparently in connection
with the copper concentrates exports.
Job Ndugai, Speaker
of the National Assembly, accompanied by a team of Members of
Parliament, inspected the seized containers with copper
concentrates at the Dar es Salaam port and said the
parliamentary review team will analyse the process of
transporting the copper concentrates and how they were exported
abroad for smelting.
“There has been a
feeling that we are being cheated as a nation on this issue,
therefore as parliament we have decided to play our role of
advising the government on the issue,” said the House Speaker.
Ndugai added: “We
want to get details of how the copper concentrates are analyzed,
packed and exported from the source. This task will also involve
reviewing mining contracts.”
TPA Director General, said more than 50,000 containers with
copper concentrates move out of the country every year.
Kakoko said since
the country passed laws to allow the exportation of copper
concentrates in 1998, over one million containers with copper
concentrates have left the country.
He said newly
installed scanners at the port have helped to a large extent to
seize containers ferrying copper concentrates, adding that there
has been a good collaboration from various governments’ agencies
in seizing the containers.
“We are sure that
the copper concentrates in these containers have 90-percent
mineral content, therefore we need a special team that will
carry out a second analysis of the concentrates so that we find
out what the content is,” said Kakoko.
Campaigners warn of plastic
litter in Kenya’s freshwater bodies
By Christine Lagat NAIVASHA, Kenya, (Xinhua)
-- Bold measures are imperative to
reverse the growing menace of plastic litter in Kenya’s fresh
water bodies, campaigners have said.
Speaking at a
cleanup activity on the shores of Lake Naivasha on Saturday, a
world heritage site, the campaigners warned that survival of
large fresh water bodies in Kenya is at stake due to plastic
CEO of conservation lobby Clean Up Kenya, said that robust
public private partnerships and community engagement were key to
revitalize action on plastic waste in fresh water ecosystems.
“Majority of our
country’s fresh water bodies are choking with plastic litter
hence the need for punitive legislation and involvement of local
communities to eradicate this menace before it spin out of
control,” Simidi said.
partnered with UN agencies to undertake clean-up activities on
Lake Naivasha shores as a build-up to World Water Day that was
celebrated on March 22.
Simidi noted that
Lake Naivasha is grappling with high pollution levels linked to
solid waste, agricultural chemicals, over-fishing and climate
“The water level in
Lake Naivasha has been shrinking lately due to siltation.
Invasive weeds, plastic waste and intensive chemicals use by
horticulture farms in the riparian have worsened the Lake’s
pollution,” said Simidi.
Lake Naivasha that
is listed as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO also supports
agriculture, fishing and tourism sectors in Nakuru County and
Nakuru County Director of Environment and Natural Resources,
said rapid urbanization and industrial growth have worsened
dumping of solid waste into the lake.
discharge of waste water and non-biodegradable material into
Lake Naivasha has threatened its survival despite its huge
contribution to tourism and agricultural sectors in the
country,” said Kiogora.
He revealed the
national and county governments are implementing joint programs
to halt solid waste pollution in Lake Naivasha.
Bernhardt, Program Officer at UNEP’s Fresh Water Unit, said that
deterrent measures like plastic ban that was announced by
Kenya’s ministry of environment on March 14 could re-energize
action on solid waste pollution in the country’s fresh water
“Lake Naivasha is a
microcosm of solid waste pollution facing many fresh water
ecosystems in Kenya. Enforcement of regulations alongside
involvement of the local government, private sector and
communities is key to reduce plastic litter in the Lake,” said
Kenya’s farm workers arrested
for killing seven zebras
NAIVASHA, Kenya, (Xinhua) --
Kenyan wildlife rangers on Sunday arrested
eight farm workers suspected of hacking to death seven zebras
near Rift Valley town of Naivasha located northwest of the
The laborers are
alleged to have killed the Zebras for invading a private farm
along Nairobi-Nakuru highway.
Officials from the
Kenyan wildlife agency said the suspects will be arraigned in
court to answer charges of terminating life of a protected
Hapicha Ellema, the
Officer in Charge of Hells Gate National Park said farm managers
and workers will be prosecuted for their involvement in the
death of seven zebras.
“The farm management
is alleged to have mobilized workers to kill the zebras and
other smaller herbivores that escaped with injuries. They are
liable for punishment under the wildlife act,” Ellema told
She added that the
farm workers attacked zebras, impalas and gazelles using crude
“Any grievous bodily
harm to a wild animal is considered a heinous crime by the newly
enacted wildlife bill. So the farm workers who killed zebras
must face the law,” said Ellema.
She revealed that
wildlife rangers have intensified the hunt for criminals
involved in illegal trade in game meat that is rampant in Rift
Valley towns and Nairobi.
Chinese business community
launches trade lobby in Kenya
NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
The Kenya Chinese Chamber of Commerce (KCCC), a
trade lobby bringing together the Chinese business community
operating in the East African nation, was launched on Saturday.
Chairman of the East
Africa Chinese Chamber of Commerce Han Jun said the new body is
expected to unite and empower members to form a cohesive force
among domestic and overseas Chinese.
Han observed that
Kenya has become a trading spot of the China-Africa cooperation.
“Kenya has become an
important direction and foothold in East Africa for China’s belt
and road initiative and national strategy of going abroad,” he
With many Chinese
projects including the ongoing construction of the Mombasa-Nairobi
Standard Gauge Railway, the launch of the direct flight of China
Southern to Kenya and the completion of the Thika Highway, a
number of Chinese firms have been attracted to Kenya.
“The chamber is
expected to forge a new chapter between the Chinese people
working in Kenya and further the modernization process,” KCCC
Chairman Zhuo Wu said.
Zhuo said the new
chamber will help create additional jobs for the local Kenyan
people and contribute to Kenya’s economic development programs.
“We are going to
continue strengthening the relationship between China and Kenya
and also make contributions towards the economic and cultural
development of the two countries,” said Zhuo.
Kenya’s afro-pop music group
set to tour China
NAIROBI, (Xinhua) --
A leading Kenyan afro-pop band Sauti Sol, is set
to make its first tour of China in May this year.
The four-man band,
that originally started as a cappella group, are set to sing in
Swahili and Chinese.
“We intend to
promote Kenyan music in China and also invite Chinese musicians
to come to Kenya and perform,” the band’s leader Bien-Aime
Baraza told Xinhua in an interview in Nairobi on Saturday.
that during the ten-day tour, the band will perform in Chinese
cities including Beijing, Shangai, and Chengdu.
“We plan to meet and
perform alongside the Chinese musicians and plan on the
promotion of cultural exchange since Kenyans know very little
about Chinese culture besides business and foods,” he added.
He observed that the
trip will create an open understanding between the two countries
and encourage diplomacy at a different level by tapping music
knowledge from the Asian population.
Sauti Sol was
crowned Best Group in Africa at the 2016 MTV Africa Music
awards, Soundcity MTV Awards, AFRIMA Awards and UK’s BEFFTA
The band has
previously toured Europe, United States of America and several
The band that is
composed of Baraza, Willis Austin Chimano, Polycarp Otieno and
Savara Mudigi are currently looking for sponsors to enable them
perform in the Chinese cities.
Kenyan President calls for
recruitment of more golf junior players
NAIROBI, March 26 (Xinhua)
-- Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Sunday challenged Kenyan
golf clubs to open up their courses to more youth.
attracting the youth to play golf will secure the future of the
game and the next Kenya Open could be won by a Kenyan youth.
He said playing golf
will also have the benefit of teaching the youth vital lessons
about honour, good manners, and about patience.
“It is a game that
teaches discipline, honour and it is a game that we will like to
see more and more of our youth participating in,” said the
President when he presided over the closing ceremony of the 49th
Kenya Open in Nairobi.
He said Kenyan
schools should also include golf as part of their sporting
activities to encourage more youth to take up the game.
Kenyatta said the
prize money will be raised starting with the next tournament as
part of efforts to promote the game and attract more players to
take part in the Kenya Open.
“We will work
together to raise the prize money to 1 million U.S. dollars to
attract more players,” said the President. He said this will
promote Kenya as a sporting destination thereby bringing in more
tourists who love the game.
He asked golf clubs
to use whichever approach convenient for them to have more
junior players on their courses such as reaching out to schools
in their neighbourhoods.
“The fact remains,
Ladies and Gentlemen, that we need to do more to open up this
wonderful game to our young people,” said the President.
The President also
encouraged the Kenyan youth to take up golf the same way they
have dominated other games. The tournament was won by Aaron Rai,
a UK citizen of Kenyan descent.
Kenya’s Titus Tuwei wins
Zhengkai Marathon title
ZHENGZHOU, (Xinhua) --
Titus Tuwei from Kenya won the men’s title
at the Zhengkai Marathon Sunday in two hours 10 minutes
and 14 seconds.
“It’s my best
record and I’m very satisfied with the result. Clear
weather and flat road help me to win,” said Tuwei, who
pocketed 20,000 US dollars in prize money.
Bungei, also from Kenya, was 13 seconds behind in second
place. Willy Kiplangat clocked 2:10:50 to round out the
podium finish for Kenya.
Tigist Memuye from Ethiopia won the women’s title in
Marathon was inaugurated in 2006, the only marathon race
in China that connects two ancient capitals - Zhengzhou
KAIFENG, (Xinhua) --
Titus Tuwei from Kenya sprints to the finish line during
the Zhengkai International Marathon in Kaifeng, city of
central China’s Henan Province on March 26, 2017. Titus
Tuwei claimed the men’s title with 2:10.14.
XINHUA PHOTO: LI BO
China’s seven athletes arrive
in Uganda for cross country worlds
KAMPALA, (Xinhua) --
Seven athletes who will represent China at the
2017 World Cross Country Championship on Friday arrived in
Uganda where the event will be held over the weekend.
Pu Zhiqiang, team
manager said they are in Uganda to put up a good show and also
learn from African runners.
“We are here also to
learn a lot from the African runners who have showed over time
that they are good in Cross Country and marathon,” Pu said.
athletes, the team also has four officials.
Fifty nine countries
and regions entered to participate in the event which will have
553 athletes taking part in.
Ethiopia and Kenya
are rated title favorites.