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Kidero reveals vast wealth, Senators’ millions Tokyo trip, Who was Monica Kimani?: Your Breakfast Briefing

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Good Morning.

Most parts of Kenya are expected to continue receiving showers, especially in the morning with areas around Lake Victoria and the Indian Ocean registering strong winds and thunderstorms. 

The weatherman has indicated that most parts of the country will likely experience above average rainfall as the short rains season kicks off.

Here are the stories making headlines in the Star this Thursday.

Former Nairobi Governor Evan Kidero has for the first time revealed how he came to acquire his multi-billion empire.

The revelations are contained in court papers that he has filed in an intriguing court battle with the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission.

Describing himself as a “man of decent means”, Kidero has rubbished claims by the EACC that his net worth is disproportionate to his income. 

In the suit challenging EACC’s orders to search his properties, Kidero lifts the lid on his confidential investment.

He also gives a blow-by-blow account of how he accumulated his wealth gradually since 1983 when he worked as a production pharmacist.

Without including any earnings during his five-year tenure as Governor, Kidero says between 1985 and 2012, he had earned a cool Sh1.3 billion.

Who was Monica Kimani?

Sorrow and grief gripped the family and friend of the slain businesswoman Monica Nyawira Kimani during her requiem mass held at Happy Valley grounds in Thika on Thursday.

Close family members eulogized the 29-year-old Nyawira as an active, kind and obedient person since she was a little child.

Her lifeless body was discovered in a bathtub last Friday at her apartment along Dennis Pritt Rd with her neck slit open and her legs and hands tied at the back.

But what caught the attention of many was her father’s revelation of what appears to be a multi-million wealth bank owned by his daughter.

“You even told me that you’ll never get married without your own house and a car and true to your words you got yourself a car and a house. You always strived for the better,” Ngarama said in his tribute.

The bishop noted that her daughter had promised to buy him a new V8 Toyota Land Cruiser as a gift while celebrating her birthday on October 10.

Senators given Sh100,000 daily allowance for Tokyo trip

Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka has approved a 14-day trip for five senators to fly to Tokyo Japan to watch the World Volleyball championship which starts tomorrow.

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The five will each pocket not less than Sh1.2 million each as per diem for the two weeks they will be in Japan.

Tokyo like Washington is considered one of the most expensive cities in the world and according to Parliamentary Service Commission rates, MPs are given Sh100,000 per day for their food and accommodation.

Parliament pays for their air tickets.

On the other hand, Kenyan players who are participating in the championship were each paid Sh80,0000 only for the three weeks they will be there.  

This means that each player will get Sh 3,800 per day.

CA warns shoppers on increased online retail fraud

Shoppers have been cautioned against online purchases following an increase in fake digital retail sites.

The regulator said in the last one week there has been a spike in online shopping frauds.

The Communications Authority says various websites and mobile applications being launched are fake and operated by crooks out to rip off unsuspecting shoppers.

The fraudsters entice unsuspecting buyers through deals via email, SMS, social media pages or telephone. They also request for a registration fee for the goods or services.

Help us or we uproot coffee trees: Farmers bemoan dwindling returns

Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri recalls growing up on the slopes of Mount Kenya, at a time when coffee was the pride of every village.

But today, what used to be the leading foreign exchange earner in the country in the late 1960s and 70s is suffering decreased fortunes.

“Coffee farmers are miserable. Just when did the rain start beating us?” he told the Star. “It is unfortunate that while some farmers earn Sh100 per kilo from coffee bonus, others are earning Sh10.” 

Farmers doing well include members of Thirikwa Coffee Society in Kirinyaga county. Society chairman Ngari Gitari said they fared well in the 2017-18 crop year.

The society produced 10,000kg in the 2017-18 production period, earning about Sh1 million at Sh103 per kg of cherry.

But this is just a drop in the ocean as narrated by farmers from other areas in the Mt Kenya region.

For more on these stories and others, keep browsing the Star website for the latest news making headlines across Kenya and around the world.

To get the Breakfast Briefing right into your inbox every morning, click here for a free subscription.

Click here for the latest political news 

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Public officers above 58 years and with pre-existing conditions told to work from home: The Standard

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Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua. [File, Standard]
In a document from Head of Public Service, Joseph Kinyua new measure have been outlined to curb the bulging spread of covid-19. Public officers with underlying health conditions and those who are over 58 years -a group that experts have classified as most vulnerable to the virus will be required to execute their duties from home.

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However, the new rule excluded personnel in the security sector and other critical and essential services.
“All State and public officers with pre-existing medical conditions and/or aged 58 years and above serving in CSG5 (job group ‘S’) and below or their equivalents should forthwith work from home,” read the document,” read the document.
To ensure that those working from home deliver, the Public Service directs that there be clear assignments and targets tasked for the period designated and a clear reporting line to monitor and review work done.
SEE ALSO: Thinking inside the cardboard box for post-lockdown work stations
Others measures outlined in the document include the provision of personal protective equipment to staff, provision of sanitizers and access to washing facilities fitted with soap and water, temperature checks for all staff and clients entering public offices regular fumigation of office premises and vehicles and minimizing of visitors except by prior appointments.
Officers who contract the virus and come back to work after quarantine or isolation period will be required to follow specific directives such as obtaining clearance from the isolation facility certified by the designated persons indicating that the public officer is free and safe from Covid-19. The officer will also be required to stay away from duty station for a period of seven days after the date of medical certification.
“The period a public officer spends in quarantine or isolation due to Covid-19, shall be treated as sick leave and shall be subject to the Provisions of the Human Resource Policy and procedures Manual for the Public Service(May,2016),” read the document.
The service has also made discrimination and stigmatization an offence and has guaranteed those affected with the virus to receive adequate access to mental health and psychosocial supported offered by the government.
The new directives targeting the Public Services come at a time when Kenyans have increasingly shown lack of strict observance of the issued guidelines even as the number of positive Covid-19 cases skyrocket to 13,771 and leaving 238 dead as of today.
SEE ALSO: Working from home could be blessing in disguise for persons with disabilities
Principal Secretaries/ Accounting Officers will be personally responsible for effective enforcement and compliance of the current guidelines and any future directives issued to mitigate the spread of Covid-19.

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Uhuru convenes summit to review rising Covid-19 cases: The Standard

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President Uhuru Kenyatta (pictured) will on Friday, July 24, meet governors following the ballooning Covid-19 infections in recent days.
The session will among other things review the efficacy of the containment measures in place and review the impact of the phased easing of the restrictions, State House said in a statement.
This story is being updated.
SEE ALSO: Sakaja resigns from Covid-19 Senate committee, in court tomorrow

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Drastic life changes affecting mental health

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Kenya has been ranked 6th among African countries with the highest cases of depression, this has triggered anxiety by the World Health Organization (WHO), with 1.9 million people suffering from a form of mental conditions such as depression, substance abuse.

KBC Radio_KICD Timetable

Globally, one in four people is affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives, this is according to the WHO.

Currently, around 450 million people suffer from such conditions, placing mental disorders among the leading causes of ill-health and disability worldwide.

The pandemic has also been known to cause significant distress, mostly affecting the state of one’s mental well-being.

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With the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic attributed to the novel Coronavirus disease, millions have been affected globally with over 14 million infections and half a million deaths as to date. This has brought about uncertainty coupled with difficult situations, including job loss and the risk of contracting the deadly virus.

In Kenya the first Coronavirus case was reported in Nairobi by the Ministry of Health on the 12th March 2020.  It was not until the government put in place precautionary measures including a curfew and lockdown (the latter having being lifted) due to an increase in the number of infections that people began feeling its effect both economically and socially.

A study by Dr. Habil Otanga,  a Lecturer at the University of Nairobi, Department of Psychology says  that such measures can in turn lead to surge in mental related illnesses including depression, feelings of confusion, anger and fear, and even substance abuse. It also brings with it a sense of boredom, loneliness, anger, isolation and frustration. In the post-quarantine/isolation period, loss of employment due to the depressed economy and the stigma around the disease are also likely to lead to mental health problems.

The Kenya National Bureau of Statistics (KNBS) states that at least 300,000 Kenyans have lost their jobs due to the Coronavirus pandemic between the period of January and March this year.

KNBC noted that the number of employed Kenyans plunged to 17.8 million as of March from 18.1 million people as compared to last year in December. The Report states that the unemployment rate in Kenya stands at 13.7 per cent as of March this year while it stood 12.4 per cent in December 2019.

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Mama T (not her real name) is among millions of Kenyans who have been affected by containment measures put in place to curb the spread of the virus, either by losing their source of income or having to work under tough guidelines put in place by the MOH.

As young mother and an event organizer, she has found it hard to explain to her children why they cannot go to school or socialize freely with their peers as before.

“Sometimes it gets difficult as they do not understand what is happening due to their age, this at times becomes hard on me as they often think I am punishing them,”

Her contract was put on hold as no event or public gatherings can take place due to the pandemic. This has brought other challenges along with it, as she has to find means of fending for her family expenditures that including rent and food.

“I often wake up in the middle of the night with worries about my next move as the pandemic does not exhibit any signs of easing up,” she says. She adds that she has been forced to sort for manual jobs to keep her family afloat.

Ms. Mary Wahome, a Counseling Psychologist and Programs Director at ‘The Reason to Hope,’ in Karen, Nairobi says that such kind of drastic life changes have an adverse effect on one’s mental status including their family members and if not addressed early can lead to depression among other issues.

“We have had cases of people indulging in substance abuse to deal with the uncertainty and stress brought about by the pandemic, this in turn leads to dependence and also domestic abuse,”

Sam Njoroge , a waiter at a local hotel in Kiambu, has found himself indulging in substance abuse due to challenges he is facing after the hotel he was working in was closed down as it has not yet met the standards required by the MOH to open.

“My day starts at 6am where I go to a local pub, here I can get a drink for as little as Sh30, It makes me suppress the frustration I feel.” he says.

Sam is among the many who have found themselves in the same predicament and resulted to substance abuse finding ways to beat strict measures put in place by the government on the sale of alcohol so as to cope.

Mary says, situations like Sam’s are dangerous and if not addressed early can lead to serious complications, including addiction and dependency, violent behavior and also early death due to health complications.

She has, however, lauded the government for encouraging mental wellness and also launching the Psychological First Aid (PFA) guide in the wake of the virus putting emphasis on the three action principal of look, listen and link. “When we follow this it will be easy to identify an individual in distress and also offer assistance”.

Mary has urged anyone feeling the weight of the virus taking a toll on them not to hesitate but look for someone to talk to.

“You should not only seek help from a specialist but also talk to a friend, let them know what you are undergoing and how you feel, this will help ease their emotional stress and also find ways of dealing with the situation they are facing,” She added

Mary continued to stress on the need to perform frequent body exercises as a form of stress relief, reading and also taking advantage of this unfortunate COVID-19 period to engage in hobbies and talent development.

“Let people take this as an opportunity to kip fit, get in touch with one’s inner self and  also engage in   reading that would  help expand their knowledge.

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