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Shaka Mpemba

Shaka Mpemba
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About one month ago we revealed that the Killing of our Indian Ocean Beaches here in Kwale County has not stopped as hoped. Still at night the Chinese Sand Dredger ship leaves the port of Mombasa and is sucking tones and tones of our beach sand to support the building of the new railway.

Believe it or not – everybody knows !!!

Meetings were held – all national newspapers were reporting about it – village elders were claiming – tourism stakeholders were shouting – environmental organizations were presenting impact studies …. nothing helped to stop this huge environmental killing.

The question is WHY ?

Dear Eyes-on-Kwale fans and followers – we all know why !! Driven by the Chinese constructing company all important decision makers like NEMA and KPA ( Kenya Port Authority ) and maybe some top national government positions have connected to find their way against the interest of Kwale County.

Last month we asked the Kwale County Government about their position and they confirmed they are totally against the sand dredging. Then we were waiting to see what they would come up with.

We believe that our Governor Salim Mvurya did as much as he can to stop it via his official mandate consulting the related stakeholders – but it looks like without success !!!

NOW – Governor Mvurya came up with a brilliant way to increase public pressure. He placed a one page add in the Daily Nation describing the situation and calling everybody to help stopping this scandal.

To be honest – that is an excellent move !!!

IT IS OUR CALL NOW !!!!!

Let’s share this article and show the entire Kenyan Nations what’s happening here. Let’s share this article and demonstrate that we are behind our Governor Mvurya in his fight against killing our Beaches.

Find here the 1 page advertising he has placed in the Daily Nation on Friday the 8th of May 2015

( Klick on it to enlarge ) :

Governor Mvurya is fighting to stop the killing of our Beach ( Click to enlarge )

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We all will see in a few years that it was a historical mistake for all of us to open investment opportunities for the Chinese government and its industry.

These always smiling “ Kenya Supporters “ have invaded our country and found a Kenyan political class who was and is more than willing to give-in our natural recourses for the sake of so called economic growth. Don´t think they are helping us because they want to see Kenya growing nicely. The Chinese are here only to help themselves.

Kenya is targeted as a very interesting market for their own products and services.

IvoryMaybe you say now: “ What’s wrong with it – that’s normal “ … well it could be normal as long as a business partnership is grounded on ethics and moral that fits both sides. For example. It is more than obvious that the Chinese in combination with other Asians are in love with ivory – only they don’t have enough. But we as Kenyans – we would have enough – but we don’t want to sell it because we are in love with our nature and its belonging elephants or rhino’s.

A business partner with a minimum ethic, moral and a sense of partnership would understand and respect this. Well but not the Chinese. Since the Chinese companies and administration are around in our country poaching is recording new death toll records year after year. More than that they are also the biggest worldwide supporter of NOT stopping ivory trading.

And now – they are killing our Indian Ocean Beach.

dredger What is happening? Our Government has given several huge construction tenders to Chinese companies. This constructions need sand for making concrete. In a south coast meeting – Professor Jacob Kibwage – who teaches at the University of Nairobi and who is licensed by NEMA – gave an outlook of the projects. Prof. Kibwage gave an outline of what the project was about, including the construction of a new KPA terminal at Port Reitz where all the rubbish was being dumped out at sea, approximately 4km off shore. The new railway terminal will also be at Port Reitz but for the construction of the railway line for which 5.000.000 tons of sand would be required and which would be taken from our ocean bed along Diani Beach,. The sand would then be washed at Port Reitz and then used.

Wait a minute: 5.000.000 tons of beach sand will be taken out of the ocean.

WHY ? Because it’s just the cheapest way. These Chinese companies don´t care about our corals, our fishermen our beautiful ocean – they just do it because they CAN do it. The Kwale community has tried to stop it. Driven by Luciana Bazile the SCRA Chairperson ( South Coast Resident Association ) all relevant stakeholders were denying it and came up with a clear NO – stop it !!

All residents including marine experts, voiced their concerns including:

a) Killing of our mangroves at Gazi – mangroves which produce oxygen and filter the air we breath.
b) How come such a marine project was undertaken without consulting any marine experts/scientists on the impact this would have.
c) By removing the sand just across from the reef the hydrology in the area would change and a real possibility that the tides would take the sand from our beaches to fill the gaps and we would remain with sandless but rocky beaches as has happened in front of Sand Island in Tiwi.
d) The Tiwi Fishermen reiterated that they are still jobless as no fishing can be done in their area, and it is 2 years now that they cannot afford to send their children to school.
e) The tourist industry would totally collapse which tourist wants to come to an area which is just rocks, no diving, no fishing etc.
f) The filthy which is being dumped outside Mombasa into the Ocean will also impact us, as the tides will slowly bring this filth ashore along the coastlines.
g) The fishermen were worried as they would no longer have a job.
h) The reef would die.
i) Heavy metals from the mud dumped off Likoni could contaminate the ocean.
j) No scientific studies done nor a proper EIA document produced but merely a slide show praising the new railway.

The sand is goingOur Kwale County Minister of Tourism, Hon Adam Sheik, expressed his disappointment that his Governor had not been consulted on such a project.

Within his County, and the response from our County Government was a definite NO to this project being undertaken here.

But how can we stop our “ Kenyan Friends “ these Chinese sand dredger ?

Let’s shout it to our Governor:

PLEASE – STOP THIS BEACH KILLING – BEFORE IT´S TOO LATE

 

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In these days our county Government is touring around to present and discuss their future budget numbers, ideas and priorities for the 2015/16 – 2017/18 Kwale County MTEF Budget. But the information for the public participation came late and important information documents were not released upfront.

The 2012 Public Finance Management Act requires each of Kenya’s 47 counties to publish budget information during the formulation, approval, implementation, and audit stages of the budget cycle. This information allows the public to shape county budget priorities, discuss trade-offs with their representatives in the county assemblies, and track whether the budget is delivering on what was agreed during consultations between the public, executive, and assembly. But is the requisite county budget information being published ?

We have checked the availability of seven documents on the official Kwale County Website and have seen that only 2 out of seven are available:

  • County Integrated Development Plans
  • Annual Development Plans
  • County Budget Review and Outlook Papers
  • County Fiscal Strategy Papers ( published on the 2nd of april 2015 – far too late )
  • Budget Estimates (Proposed Budgets)
  • Approved Estimates (Enacted Budgets)
  • Quarterly Implementation Reports

Commission on Revenue Allocation chairman Micah Cheserem

County governments must release documents on their budgets to the public at least two weeks before they are formally discussed by a select group of area leaders, the Commission on Revenue Allocation (CRA) has said. In new guidelines on consultation during preparation of county government budgets, the CRA said the public must also be given a notice of at least two weeks before convening the meeting to debate the spending proposals.The time lines are intended to ensure that the public is not caught flatfooted as has been the case in the past when many county governments issue a notice only a day to the meeting. Access to timely and comprehensive information is crucial if the wider public in Kenya are to meaningfully participate in government decision making.

This was the offical message published on the 2nd of april 2015 ONLY 5 days before the first public meetings have started:

PUBLIC PARTICIPATION FOR PREPARATION OF THE 2015/16 -2017/18 KWALE COUNTY MTEF BUDGET

Chapter twelve section 201(a)of the Constitution,2010 read together with section125(2) of the Public Finance Management Act,2012 emphasize public participation in county budget making process .Pursuant to these provisions, the County Government of Kwale hereby invites the public, interested persons or groups and other stakeholders to public hearings in preparation of the 2015/16-2017/18 Kwale County MTEF Budget.

The participation shall be through oral presentations during the scheduled forums to be held in the 20 wards within the county .Written submissions can also be made  to the County Treasury, Kwale County Government, P.O. BOX 4-80403  or vide any of our email  addresses-  county treasury@kwale.go.ke or chief officer finance@kwale.go.ke.

The draft  2015/16-2017/18 Kwale County MTEF Budget Estimates can be viewed from our website www.kwalecountygov.com or at our county  ward offices . The schedule for the meetings is indicated below.

 

DATE TIME WARD VENUE
                                                              LUNGALUNGA SUB -COUNTY
Tuesday- 07/04/2015 10.00 a.m. Vanga ADC Church-Lungalunga
Tuesday-07/04/2015 2.00 p.m. Mwereni Sub county Offices-Lungalunga
Wednesday-08/04/2015 10.00 a.m Pongwe-Kikoneni Ward Offices-Shimoni
Wednesday-08/04/2015 2.00  p.m. Dzombo Menzamwenye Social Hall
                                                      MSAMBWENI  SUB- COUNTY
Tuesday- 07/04/2015 10.00 a.m. Ramisi Jomo Kenyatta Primary School
Tuesday-07/04/2015 2.00 p.m Kinondo Mwabungo Social Hall
Wednesday-08/04/2015 10.00 a.m. Ukunda Red Cross Hall -Mvindeni-Ukunda
Wednesday-08/04/2015 2.00 p.m. Gombato-Bongwe Show Ground -Ukunda
                                                      MATUGA SUB- COUNTY
Tuesday-07/04/2015 10.00 a.m Waa- Ng’ombeni Ng’ombeni Chief’s office Hall
Tuesday-07/04/2015 2.00 p.m Tiwi Tiwi Chief’s office
Wednesday-08/04/2015 10.00 a.m. Mkongani Kizibe
Wednesday    08/04/2015 2.00 p.m Tsimba-Golini Kwale Cultural Centre
Thursday -09/04/2015 10.00  a.m Kubo South Lukore
                                                        KINANGO SUB -COUNTY
Tuesday-07/04/2015 10.00 a.m Ndavaya Ndavaya Ward Offices
Tuesday-07/04/2015 2.00 p.m Kinango Kinango Youth Empowerment Centre
Wednesday-08/04/2015 10.00 a.m. Mwavumbo Kalalani Social hall
Wednesday-08/04/2015 2.00 p.m Kasemeni Bofu Social Hall
Thursday-    09/04/2015 10.00  a.m Puma Vigurungani  Church
Friday-10/04/2015 10.00 a.m Mackinon Road Taru
Friday-10/04/2015 2.00 p.m. Samburu-Chengoni Dzilaz Hotel

 

Important to say that the meetings could not be attended from Kwale people, who have a regular job !!!!!!

 

Budget Process 2015

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It´s not so long ago that our Diani Beach was rated one of the most beautiful beaches around the world. For sure a step forward to promote our Kwale County as international tourism destination.

But our current County Government has shown in the last more than 2 years that they are not really interested in pushing our south coast tourism business – at least we can not identify any milestone project to be finalist.

These days we can recognize that the garbage situation – especially on the Diani Beach Road is getting more worse every day. Very big areas left and right of this road are dirty and becoming waste dumping hotspots.

There is no network of official waste collection areas that would be cleared by the government. So we see them growing wild everywhere – including the usual waste burning fires, which are highly dangerous for the environment and the personal health.

Waste in Ukunda2Of cores we all remember the new anti-waste-dumping-law … don´t laugh – its existing !!!

But maybe our Kwale Tourism Minister Adam Sheikh has something new in mind. He is talking ( only talking ) about strengthen the local tourism attractions. Well – here we are.

What about a daily excursion around Diani Beach and Ukunda and we call them The Garbage Tour.

It would be a tour you don’t need to organize – just drive and see. You don’t need rangers or conservancy areas.

What a brilliant idea !!!!

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Kwale County has in the recent past seen an increase of epileptic cases based on an awareness campaign of this dangerous decease. Unfortunately the number of therapists dealing with the affected people remains to be low.

Cerebral Palsy 3This is in spite of the Kwale County assembly passing a motion on May that compelled all government hospitals to have a special wing that will be catering for epileptic patients.

Speaking at Diani Center for Children with Cerebral Palsy (DCCCP), a health center that started in 2011 with 35 patients, the Msambweni Sub County occupational therapist officer Mr. Sanga Kabuka said that the work is now overwhelming.

“Am supposed to see 6 children from Likoni till Lungalunga and Kwale per day but now am handling 20 epileptic cases “

The patients include new born, outpatients and those on occupational therapy. “We have started establishing a data bank and so far 400 are totally disable. We treat them freely but if equipment is needed we tell parents to buy them,” said Kabuka who operates from Msambweni referral hospital.

The heavy increase of patient numbers is coming from intensive campaigns through chiefs’ offices, schools, health workers and politicians.

Cerebral Palsy 1The Diani Center for Children with Cerebral Palsy (DCCCP) is a nonprofit community organization which was established by one of the patient parents Mr. Elias Kimaru. The Center is offering outreach therapy sessions where experts work on training the muscles of the disable children and at the same time giving an opportunity to share experiences which is geared towards abolishing stigma. The DCCCP works with children from one month to ten years – able parents have to pay Sh150 per visit.

“We are facing an acute shortage of therapists and on the other hand recognizing that many parents are too poor to pay the little fee” said Kimaru.

Mrs. Christine Mwaka Mvurya a community health officer with Base Titanium mining company also supports the center. She claimed that most parents have associated the sickness with witchcraft and feeling shy to visit a doctor. “We are currently working with 15 villages to create awareness and we want to assist the center with equipment to assist the ongoing therapy ”

Some Information about Cerebral Palsy

Cerebral palsy (CP) is a disorder that affects muscle tone, movement, and motor skills (the ability to move in a coordinated and purposeful way). CP is usually caused by brain damage that occurs before or during a child’s birth, or during the first 3 to 5 years of a child’s life. The brain damage that leads to cerebral palsy can also lead to other health issues, including vision, hearing, and speech problems, and learning disabilities. There is no cure for CP, but treatment, therapy, special equipment, and, in some cases, surgery can help a child who is living with the condition.

Causes of Cerebral Palsy

The exact causes of most cases of CP are unknown, but many are the result of problems during pregnancy in which the brain is either damaged or doesn’t develop normally. This can be due to infections, maternal health problems, a genetic disorder, or something else that interferes with normal brain development. Problems during labor and delivery can cause CP in some cases. but this is the exception. Premature babies — particularly those who weigh less than 3.3 pounds (1,510 grams) — have a higher risk of CP than babies that are carried full-term, as are other low birth weight babies and multiple births, such as twins and triplets. Brain damage in infancy or early childhood can also lead to CP. A baby or toddler might suffer this damage because of lead poisoning, bacterial meningitis, malnutrition, being shaken as an infant (shaken baby syndrome), or being in a car accident while not properly restrained.

Preventing Cerebral Palsy

In many cases the causes of CP are unknown, so there’s no way to prevent it. But if you’re having a baby, you can take steps to ensure a healthy pregnancy and carry the baby to term, thus lowering the risk that your baby will have CP. Before becoming pregnant, it’s important to maintain a healthy diet and make sure that any medical problems are managed properly. As soon as you know you’re pregnant, proper prenatal medical care (including prenatal vitamins and avoiding alcohol and illegal drugs) is vital. If you are taking any medications, review these with your doctor and clarify if there are any side effects that can cause birth defects. Controlling diabetes, anemia, hypertension, seizures, and nutritional deficiencies during pregnancy can help prevent some premature births and, as a result, some cases of cerebral palsy.

Once your baby is born there are actions you can take to lower the risk of brain damage, which could lead to CP. Never shake an infant, as this can lead to shaken baby syndrome and brain damage. If you’re riding in a car, make sure your baby is properly strapped into an infant car seat that’s correctly installed — if an accident occurs, the baby will be as protected as possible. Be aware of lead exposure in your house, as lead poisoning can lead to brain damage. Remember to have your child get his or her immunizations on time — these shots protect against serious infections, some of which can cause brain damage resulting in CP.