JIENJOY

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Latest Kenya Political Gossip by The Star

Close allies of deputy prime minister Musalia Mudavadi are taking seriously statements by National Assembly Speaker Kenneth Marende which have created the impression that he (Marende) plans to run for Presidency in future. An MP who is a close associate of the DPM was overheard saying he and others would systematically and politically deal with Marende to ensure his political ambitions are checked at the end of this Parliamentary term.

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Just a day after the MP-elect for Makadara Gideon Mbuvi Kioko alias Sonko was sworn in, he was telling friends how he intended to refurbish his office at Continental House and install a wardrobe of the suits he has bought to attend Parliament. The MP, who does not hide his love for bling and whose sartorial sense of dressing has raised eyebrows, he says his suits will be only for Parliamentary business.

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Some ODM MPs are now pushing to have the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission called in to investigate how the party's share of the political party's fund has been spent. The legislators are unhappy with the way in which party aspirants in the recent by-elections were handled. A top party official was insisting on spending money meant for the aspirants on their behalf.

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Still on matters ODM, Budalangi MP Ababu Namwamba is set for bigger things. The man, once a close ally of Prime Minister Raila Odinga, is reportedly being groomed to take over the ODM secretariat. Corridors has information that some party members feel the seat should go to Internal Security assistant minister Orwa Ojode credited for his "cool" relationship with people from across the political divide.

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An MP from Rift Valley who was being investigated for corruption sent a gang of thugsto deliver a chilling message to a former senior official at the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission—stop the investigations or die. The thugs developed cold feet when they got to the man's home and found it well guarded and instead pasted the warning message on the ex-KACC officer's gate.

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A Cabinet minister is not amused. She was left out of President Kibaki's delegation to New York to attend the United Nations summit on the Millennium Development Goals. The minister was overheard complaining that she should have been included in the delegation as her ministry is one of those crucial in the implementation of the MDGs. The President has also been accused of not including the minister in delegations to African Union meetings where issues directly under the ministry's mandate are discussed.

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An MP from Central Kenya has organised a forum for professionals from his constituency to assist him in drawing up development strategies for the electorate. The invitation from the MP has been sent through sms but now many of the professionals invited are complaining because the MP has advised them that they will have to pay Sh300 for their lunch at the venue where the meeting will be held. Some of the professionals who want to attend the meeting are now claiming the MP is 'taxing' them and prefer that he meets the cost of their lunch!

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The acquisition of a hotel owned by a top grand coalition official is becoming the subject of debate among his colleagues and supporters. The man cut a deal with a foreign road contractor during the Moi regime that saw him assume ownership of the multi-million company after he 'facilitated' the contractors to acquire the tender.

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A city MP is in trouble after a lawyer accused him of conning him out of an undisclosed amount of money through a third party. The lawyer has now threatened to expose the MP whom he claims has four identity cards and who has been using the IDs to fleece him of the money.

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Failure by an MP from Rift Valley to put up a permanent home in his village is causing concern among his family and relatives. They say the MP has on three different occasions attempted to put up a house only for the structures to crumble on their own. The MP's family and relatives believe the man is cursed and that the reason for the structures' collapse is ills he may have committed in the past.

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A PNU MP was recently compelled by the Parliament security to tow away his Mercedes Benz which had been at the Continental House parking lot for the last six months. Those in the know say the MP had been unable to take the vehicle for repair and had left it at the parking lot. The authorities at Continental House wrote to the MP complaining that the car was jeopardising general tidiness and was a health hazard as rats had invaded it.

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Employees working for a top Cabinet minister are becoming curious on the source of their boss' money. The workers claim that any cash the minister gives them as gifts disappears mysteriously. They now say past employees of the minister have died mysteriously or in poverty.

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An assistant minister decided to take his wife and family to shop at an Armed Forces Canteen Organisation store in one of the military bases. The AFCO stocks a wide range of products which are heavily subsidised for the benefit of the military. The Mheshimiwa and his family in tow surprised many of the military officers there who expressed surprise that he could be shopping for tax free goods and yet he pays a negligible amount of taxes for his huge allowances and salaries.

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The spouse of a prominent politician may soon be caught in a net that the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission is laying to nab her. The woman has been getting cash from politicians and businessmen promising them that she will use her influence on her husband to sort out their businesses and political problems.

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AnMP from Rift Valley is selling arms illegally. The man who has been in the arms business for many years also controls many of the armed militia gangs in the country which are behind bank robberies and other extortion rackets in urban areas. The man's business is so secretive that not even his wife, his many concubines or his children, know what he is up to. His security detail and driver cannot also say where the MP lives as he always instructs them to leave him somewhere in town where he takes a cab to his destination.

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Still on our waheshimiwa, another well known MP has refused to pay rent for a mansion he has been living in for the last 15 years. Agents managing the property say the (dis) Honorourable MP has been issuing bouncing cheques for the last 12 years. The MP has been organising thugs to intimidate the landlady whenever she demands for payment. He has also ignored several court orders directing him to pay the rent arrears. Instead, the man has used his connections in government to ensure these orders disappear from the files and even has APs assigned to guard the house. The intention, according to his friends, is to grab the house. He used a similar ruse to 'grab' another house at Yaya Centre.

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An MP from Central Kenya is ruing his decision to campaign against the new constitution. Since the referendum, the man has been having sleepless nights fearing that his many rivals might start gaining the ground he lost for opposing the constitution. Recently, the MP had a public spat with a city councillor who had gone to the constituency to donate sand and bags of cement for the reconstruction of a classroom at a local primary school in the constituency. The MP's handlers and agents tried to coerce the school administration to reject the donation claiming it was meant to undermine the MP. This, the handlers said, is not good for development

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Cabinet minister George Saitoti has been keenly strategising how he can remain relevant in the changing political scenario. Corridor has information that the PNU chairman has met everyone who matters in his Kajiado County to consult on which position to seek in the 2012 general elections. The mathematics Professor, we are told, has been scrutinising the recent voter register and has accurately found out that he has the numbers to become the governor of the wealthy county. Just wait and read his lips!

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Did President Kibaki deliberately refuse to undertake a far-reaching reshuffle after the new
constitution was promulgated? We are told that the President, in consultation with PM Raila had agreed to reshuffle the Cabinet, civil service and the provincial administration in a move that would have signalled a new beginning. However, for some reason, the President declined to announce the changes and instead announced a mini-reshuffle that saw Chirau Ali Mwakwere return to the Cabinet.

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A senior manager at one of the parastatals under the Ministry of Energy has been sacked because of what our mole called insubordination. The manager, who was rewarded for dropping a petition case against a senior Cabinet minister was accused of "haphazard and indiscriminate appointments."

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Talk of grass suffering when two bulls fight. We hear that a misunderstanding between two senior civil servants- Foreign Affairs PS Thuita Mwangi and Public Service Commission boss Titus Gatere has seen many diplomatic staff at Foreign Affairs ministry by-passed in promotions. Corridors heard that various proposals on how to boost the low morale of diplomatic staff through promotions have been turned down by the PSC boss.

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A top lawyer who was once paid a huge amount of money for litigation is not lost to the dangers around his wealth. We hear the lawyer convinced a security officer to quit state service to serve him. Apparently, the lawyer who does not live in the city has successfully obtained a new muscle — a gun.

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What was police spokesman Eric Kiraithe's motive when-he sent out a statement to a section of the media denying that First Lady Lucy Kibaki had kicked out security boss George Nderitu? We are told Kiraithe sent the statement to media houses but left out the Star that broke the story after he failed to get the attention of Star editors.

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The fuel saga which many Kenyans have been complaining about seems to have finally caught up with some senior government officials. They were overheard discussing a possible solution to the problem—replace Energy PS Francis Nyoike with someone else. Those discussing the same seem to have forgotten a small detail—they have no authority or even powers to appoint or dismiss a PS!

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A senior deputy secretary in a ministry who acted as a PS for a few months but was never promoted is so bitter that he has been saying everything nasty about the public service. The bureaucrat's anger is finding its way to his juniors who have been on the receiving end of his acidic tongue.

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A group of Cabinet ministers are unamused by US ambassador Michael Ranneberger's frequent excursions to different constituencies without informing local MPs. The clique of ministers celebrated when news broke that Ranneberger might soon be replaced with President Obama's point-man in Sudan, Scott Gration.

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Speculation is growing that President Kibaki may be planning to stay in power until August 2013. Some people in the government are claiming that the President has been advised that the new constitution allows him to remain in office till then. Our mole tells us the President may have intimated to PSs that those saying he will have to call elections by August 2012 are misinterpreting the new constitution!

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A senior politician who lost big time in the recent by-election is said to have been taken ill immediately the reality that he had lost dawned on him. Sources close to the politician who had banked a lot on winning the seat said he could not comprehend the loss of a seat he had drooled over for years.

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New CMB (cash man brother) MP Mike "Sonko" Mbuvi is a man in trouble. Corridors heard that there are several Facebook accounts trading under his name and where thousands of fans are congratulating him. Apparently, their inboxes are flooded with proposals and offers. The pokes are also uncountable.

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We hear that a cabal of senior politicians and civil servants successfully schemed to halt the impeding sack of a powerful PS whose ministry has been riddled by scandals. According to our mole, the man earmarked to take over was given a big UN job leaving those who schemed the PS's ouster at a loss over what move to make next.

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There is no love lost between commissioners of one of the Agenda Four commissions and their secretariat. We hear the commissioners are taking over daily activities of the secretariat when actually their role is at policy levels. Corridors heard that it's only a matter of time before the row erupts in public.

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A mad woman who has been stripping naked every other day along Muindi Mbingu Street is causing jitters in town. A city resident yesterday called to complain why the City Council is not taking action to move the woman to a mental hospital and save her from ogling mindless men.

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