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Darshan Chandaria voted 2018 Most Influential Young Kenyan




Group CEO and Shareholder of Chandaria Industries, Darshan Chandaria has been voted the 2018 Most Influential Young Kenyan in the 2nd edition of the annual ranking poll led by international PR & rating firm, Avance Media & Jagari Designs.

Darshan Chandaria who was nominated in the Business category for his exploits in the world of business in Kenya & East Africa got this prestigious endorsement after beating competition from other deserving 99 influential young Kenyans from other sectors to cling the reputable title among young Kenyans.

The multiple award-winning entrepreneur, Darshan Chandaria leads the largest privately owned business group in East & Central Africa which deals in Tissue, Paper, Hygiene Products, Real Estate, and Venture Capitalism. He is an alumnus of the Cardiff University and Harvard Business School.

The ranking which was launched in 2016 was won by Comedian & TV Personality Dan Churchill Ndambuki voted as the 2016 Most Influential Young Kenyan.

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Following keenly in the ranking are: Comedian, Njugush, Footballer, Victor Wanyama, CEO of TALA, Rose Wanjiku Muturi and Youth Advocate, Raphael Obonyo who were voted among the top 5 most influential young Kenyans.

East Africa Managing Director of TALA, Rose Wanjiku Muturi who got the 4th position also got the nod as the 2018 Most Influential Young Kenyan woman during the poll.

Sharing insights about this year’s polls, Prince Akpah, MD of Avance Media mentioned; the ranking was instituted to highlight the works of young Kenyans who are contributing in diverse ways towards the advancement of development in Kenya and across Africa.

CEO of Jagari Designs, Janerose Gatobu, mentioned that in honour of the victims of the recent Riverside Attack, the list decided to honour them with the 100th position on the list to reflect the sacrifices they made for the country.

Avance Media also runs same initiative in Nigeria, South Africa, Tanzania, DR Congo, Ghana & Cameroon in partnership with various organisations and is expected to release a global ranking in 2019.

Below are winners in the various categories:

  1. Business – Darshan Chandaria, Chandaria Industries
  2. Entertainment – Njugush, Comedian
  3. Law & Governance – Scheaffer Okore, Ukweli Party
  4. Leadership & Civil Society – Raphael Obonyo, Youth Advocate
  5. Lifestyle – Natalie Wanjiru Tewa, Vlogger
  6. Media – Larry Madowo, BBC Africa
  7. Personal Development & Academia – Ruth Ambogo, Young Kenyan Women Leaders
  8. Science & Technology – Thogori Karago, LinkedIn ProFinder
  9. Social Enterprise & Philanthropy – Ruth Jepchumba Kilimo, Marakwet Girls Foundation
  10. Sports – Victor Wanyama, Footballer

Below is the list of Avance Media’s 2018 100 Most Influential Young Kenyans

  1. Darshan Chandaria – Chandaria Industries
  2. Njugush – Comedian
  3. Victor Wanyama – Footballer
  4. Rose Wanjiku Muturi – TALA
  5. Raphael Obonyo – Youth Advocate
  6. Larry Madowo – BBC Africa
  7. Ruth Ambogo – Young Kenyan Women Leaders
  8. Natalie Wanjiru Tewa – Vlogger
  9. David Rudisha – Athlete
  10. Betty Kyallo – K24 TV
  11. Scheaffer Okore – Ukweli Party
  12. Steve Mbogo – Politician
  13. Sharon Mundia – Blogger
  14. Ruth Jepchumba Kilimo – Marakwet Girls Foundation
  15. Thogori Karago – LinkedIn ProFinder
  16. Seth Gor – Comedian
  17. Wawira Njiru – Food4Education
  18. Elizabeth Ntonjira – IBM
  19. Nyashinski – Musician
  20. Amina Rabar – Capital FM
  21. Enos Olik – Video Director
  22. Nice Nailantei Leng’ete – Amref Health Africa
  23. Victoria Nkatha Mutai – Motivational Speaker
  24. David Kyalo – Koncepts & Events Ltd
  25. Trushar Khetia – Tria Group of Companies
  26. Naomi Kasi Mue – General Legal Counsel (Adrian Group)
  27. George Kimani – Comedian
  28. Amy Wanday – African Sports Network
  29. Xtian Dela – Blogger
  30. Hilda Moraa – Pezesha
  31. McDonald Mariga – Footballer
  32. Elizabeth Mang’eni – Ministry of Trade
  33. Linet Masai – Athlete
  34. Peris Bosire – Farmdrive
  35. Rita Kimani – Farmdrive
  36. King Kaka – Musician
  37. Nerima Wako-Ojiwa – Siasia Place
  38. Ng’ania Mellissa – Lawyer
  39. Natalie Robi – Werema – Msichana Empowerment Kuria
  40. Patricia Kihoro – OAP
  41. Timothy Otieno – KTN
  42. Mike Muthiga – Fat Boy Animations
  43. Sam Gikandi – Africa’s Talking
  44. Beatrice Ndungu – Motivational Speaker
  45. Stephen Sang – Governor
  46. Audrey Mbugua – Activist
  47. Wilkins Fadhili – Brand Lab Afrika and Man Behind Brands
  48. Shirlene Nafula – Crystal River Products
  49. Sandra Ochola – Tukuka
  50. Danson Muchemi – JamboPay
  51. Winnie Asiti – Activist
  52. Charles Kanyi – MP
  53. Yvonne Mburu – Nexakili
  54. Mumbi Ndungu – Ibua Africa
  55. DJ Mo – OAP
  56. Aaron Cheruiyot – Senator
  57. Bonnie Kim – Motivational Speaker
  58. Makena Onjerika – Writer
  59. Brian Mbunde – Brand Influencer
  60. Douglas Mwangi – Oasis Mathare
  61. Olivia Muiru – B Lab
  62. Ruth Mwanzia – Koola Waters
  63. Linda Kamau – AkiraChix
  64. Joey Muthengi – OAP
  65. Khaligraph Jones – Musician
  66. Natalie Sonia Mukundane – African Youth Commission
  67. John Paul Mwirigi – MP
  68. Fena Gitu – Musician
  69. Meshack Omega Omido – Public Servant
  70. Lucia Musau – Blogger
  71. Adam Maina – Social Media Influencer
  72. Huston Malande – Skyline Design
  73. Abraham Mbuthia – Uza Point
  74. Mercy Chebeni – Senator
  75. Mwalimu Rachel – OAP
  76. Leanne Peris N Kimani – Diner En Blanc Nairobi
  77. Leroy Mwasaru – Greenpact
  78. Victor Matara – Blogger
  79. Antony Nkuubi – Governance Pillar Organization
  80. Anne Kiguta – OAP
  81. Leonida Mutuku – Intelipro
  82. Martin Kiarie – BEAN Interactive
  83. Geoffrey Kipsang Kamworor – Athlete
  84. Brenda Wairimu – Actress
  85. Silvia Njoki
  86. Jeff Israel Nthiwa – Destiny Life Coaching
  87. Ekai Nabenyo – Center for Community Development
  88. Elijah Motonei Manangoi – Athlete
  89. Margaret Wambui – Athlete
  90. Grace Sundukwa – y Assembly Member
  91. Paul Kihiko – Wing It Nairobi
  92. Dysmus Kisilu – Solar Freeze
  93. June Syowia – Beiless Group
  94. Octopizzo – Musician
  95. Silas Kiplagat – Athlete
  96. Davidson Ngibuini – OAP
  97. Raymond Karago – Actor
  98. Bedan Karoki Muchiri – Athlete
  99. Rajiv Mehta – Tangerine Investments
  100. Victims of Riverside Attack

The 2018 100 Most Influential Young Kenyans ranking was conducted by Avance Media & Jagari Designs in partnership with Blue Blazer International, VIPI State, COSDEF Group, 1000 African Voices, CliqAfrica, WatsUp TV, &



Sordid tale of the bank ‘that would bribe God’




Bank of Credit and Commerce International. August 1991. [File, Standard]

“This bank would bribe God.” These words of a former employee of the disgraced Bank of Credit and Commerce International (BCCI) sum up one of the most rotten global financial institutions.
BCCI pitched itself as a top bank for the Third World, but its spectacular collapse would reveal a web of transnational corruption and a playground for dictators, drug lords and terrorists.
It was one of the largest banks cutting across 69 countries and its aftermath would cause despair to innocent depositors, including Kenyans.
BCCI, which had $20 billion (Sh2.1 trillion in today’s exchange rate) assets globally, was revealed to have lost more than its entire capital.
The bank was founded in 1972 by the crafty Pakistani banker Agha Hasan Abedi.
He was loved in his homeland for his charitable acts but would go on to break every rule known to God and man.
In 1991, the Bank of England (BoE) froze its assets, citing large-scale fraud running for several years. This would see the bank cease operations in multiple countries. The Luxembourg-based BCCI was 77 per cent owned by the Gulf Emirate of Abu Dhabi.  
BoE investigations had unearthed laundering of drugs money, terrorism financing and the bank boasted of having high-profile customers such as Panama’s former strongman Manual Noriega as customers.
The Standard, quoting “highly placed” sources reported that Abu Dhabi ruler Sheikh Zayed Sultan would act as guarantor to protect the savings of Kenyan depositors.
The bank had five branches countrywide and panic had gripped depositors on the state of their money.
Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) would then move to appoint a manager to oversee the operations of the BCCI operations in Kenya.
It sent statements assuring depositors that their money was safe.
The Standard reported that the Sheikh would be approaching the Kenyan and other regional subsidiaries of the bank to urge them to maintain operations and assure them of his personal support.
It was said that contact between CBK and Abu Dhabi was “likely.”
This came as the British Ambassador to the UAE Graham Burton implored the gulf state to help compensate Britons, and the Indian government also took similar steps.
The collapse of BCCI was, however, not expect to badly hit the Kenyan banking system. This was during the sleazy 1990s when Kenya’s banking system was badly tested. It was the era of high graft and “political banks,” where the institutions fraudulently lent to firms belonging or connected to politicians, who were sometimes also shareholders.
And even though the impact was expected to be minimal, it was projected that a significant number of depositors would transfer funds from Asian and Arab banks to other local institutions.
“Confidence in Arab banking has taken a serious knock,” the “highly placed” source told The Standard.
BCCI didn’t go down without a fight. It accused the British government of a conspiracy to bring down the Pakistani-run bank.  The Sheikh was said to be furious and would later engage in a protracted legal battle with the British.
“It looks to us like a Western plot to eliminate a successful Muslim-run Third World Bank. We know that it often acted unethically. But that is no excuse for putting it out of business, especially as the Sultan of Abu Dhabi had agreed to a restructuring plan,” said a spokesperson for British Asians.
A CBK statement signed by then-Deputy Governor Wanjohi Murithi said it was keenly monitoring affairs of the mother bank and would go to lengths to protect Kenyan depositors.
“In this respect, the CBK has sought and obtained the assurance of the branch’s management that the interests of depositors are not put at risk by the difficulties facing the parent company and that the bank will meet any withdrawal instructions by depositors in the normal course of business,” said Mr Murithi.
CBK added that it had maintained surveillance of the local branch and was satisfied with its solvency and liquidity.
This was meant to stop Kenyans from making panic withdrawals.
For instance, armed policemen would be deployed at the bank’s Nairobi branch on Koinange Street after the bank had announced it would shut its Kenyan operations.
In Britain, thousands of businesses owned by British Asians were on the verge of financial ruin following the closure of BCCI.
Their firms held almost half of the 120,000 bank accounts registered with BCCI in Britain. 
The African Development Bank was also not spared from this mess, with the bulk of its funds deposited and BCCI and stood to lose every coin.
Criminal culture
In Britain, local authorities from Scotland to the Channel Islands are said to have lost over £100 million (Sh15.2 billion in today’s exchange rate).
The biggest puzzle remained how BCCI was allowed by BoE and other monetary regulation authorities globally to reach such levels of fraudulence.
This was despite the bank being under tight watch owing to the conviction of some of its executives on narcotics laundering charges in the US.
Coast politician, the late Shariff Nassir, would claim that five primary schools in Mombasa lost nearly Sh1 million and appealed to then Education Minister George Saitoti to help recover the savings. Then BoE Governor Robin Leigh-Pemberton condemned it as so deeply immersed in fraud that rescue or recovery – at least in Britain – was out of the question.
“The culture of the bank is criminal,” he said. The bank was revealed to have targeted the Third World and had created several “institutional devices” to promote its operations in developing countries.
These included the Third World Foundation for Social and Economic Studies, a British-registered charity.
“It allowed it to cultivate high-level contacts among international statesmen,” reported The Observer, a British newspaper.
BCCI also arranged an annual Third World lecture and a Third World prize endowment fund of about $10 million (Sh1 billion in today’s exchange rate).
Winners of the annual prize had included Nelson Mandela (1985), sir Bob Geldof (1986) and Archbishop Desmond Tutu (1989).
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Monitor water pumps remotely via your phone

Tracking and monitoring motor vehicles is not new to Kenyans. Competition to install affordable tracking devices is fierce but essential for fleet managers who receive reports online and track vehicles from the comfort of their desk.

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Agricultural Development Corporation Chief Accountant Gerald Karuga on the Spot Over Fraud –




Gerald Karuga, the acting chief accountant at the Agricultural Development Corporation (ADC), is on the spot over fraud in land dealings.

ADC was established in 1965 through an Act of Parliament Cap 346 to facilitate the land transfer programme from European settlers to locals after Kenya gained independence.

Karuga is under fire for allegedly aiding a former powerful permanent secretary in the KANU era Benjamin Kipkulei to deprive ADC beneficiaries of their land in Naivasha.

Kahawa Tungu understands that the aggrieved parties continue to protest the injustice and are now asking the Ethics and Anti-corruption Commission (EACC) and the Directorate of Criminal Investigations (DCI) to probe Karuga.

A source who spoke to Weekly Citizen publication revealed that Managing Director Mohammed Dulle is also involved in the mess at ADC.

Read: Ministry of Agriculture Apologizes After Sending Out Tweets Portraying the President in bad light

Dulle is accused of sidelining a section of staffers in the parastatal.

The sources at ADC intimated that Karuga has been placed strategically at ADC to safeguard interests of many people who acquired the corporations’ land as “donations” from former President Daniel Arap Moi.

Despite working at ADC for many years Karuga has never been transferred, a trend that has raised eyebrows.

“Karuga has worked here for more than 30 years and unlike other senior officers in other parastatals who are transferred after promotion or moved to different ministries, for him, he has stuck here for all these years and we highly suspect that he is aiding people who were dished out with big chunks of land belonging to the corporation in different parts of the country,” said the source.

In the case of Karuga safeguarding Kipkulei’s interests, workers at the parastatals and the victims who claim to have lost their land in Naivasha revealed that during the Moi regime some senior officials used dubious means to register people as beneficiaries of land without their knowledge and later on colluded with rogue land officials at the Ministry of Lands to acquire title deeds in their names instead of those of the benefactors.

Read Also: Galana Kulalu Irrigation Scheme To Undergo Viability Test Before Being Privatised


“We have information that Karuga has benefitted much from Kipkulei through helping him and this can be proved by the fact that since the matter of the Naivasha land began, he has been seen changing and buying high-end vehicles that many people of his rank in government can’t afford to buy or maintain,” the source added.

“He is even building a big apartment for rent in Ruiru town.”

The wealthy officer is valued at over Sh1.5 billion in prime properties and real estate.

Last month, more than 100 squatters caused scenes in Naivasha after raiding a private firm owned by Kipkulei.

The squatters, who claimed to have lived on the land for more than 40 years, were protesting take over of the land by a private developer who had allegedly bought the land from the former PS.

They pulled down a three-kilometre fence that the private developed had erected.

The squatters claimed that the former PS had not informed them that he had sold the land and that the developer was spraying harmful chemicals on the grass affecting their livestock and homes built on a section of the land.

Read Also: DP Ruto Wants NCPB And Other Agricultural Bodies Merged For Efficiency

Naivasha Deputy County Commissioner Kisilu Mutua later issued a statement warning the squatters against encroaching on Kipkuleir’s land.

“They are illegally invading private land. We shall not allow the rule of the jungle to take root,” warned Mutua.

Meanwhile, a parliamentary committee recently demanded to know identities of 10 faceless people who grabbed 30,350 acres of land belonging to the parastatal, exposing the rot at the corporation.

ADC Chairman Nick Salat, who doubles up as the KANU party Secretary-General, denied knowledge of the individuals and has asked DCI to probe the matter.

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William Ruto eyes Raila Odinga Nyanza backyard




Deputy President William Ruto will next month take his ‘hustler nation’ campaigns to his main rival, ODM leader Raila Odinga’s Nyanza backyard, in an escalation of the 2022 General Election competition.

Acrimonious fall-out

Development agenda

Won’t bear fruit

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