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Ugandan author Kakwenza Rukirabashaija (right) with another man in this photo handed out on January 26, 2022. PHOTO HANDOUT via DAILY MONITOR


Ugandan satirical author Kakwenza Rukirabashaija, who is accused of disseminating offensive communication against the First family, has been released, a constitutional watchdog announced Wednesday.

“Ugandan novelist Kakwenza Rukirabashaija was released this morning and is being taken for medical attention,” the Center for Constitutional Governance (CCG) said in a brief Twitter statement.

“Well done Counsel Kiiza Eron (defense lawyer) team plus all activists worldwide who added their voices to #FreeKakwenza,”the CCG said on Wednesday.

The 33-year-old activist was granted bail on medical grounds and was released from Kitalya Prison in Kampala on Tuesday.

But just moments after walking out of the prison, he was picked up by suspected security operatives and forced into a tinted vehicle with no number plates. The car then sped off, according to his lawyer Erin Kiiza.

This sparked an uproar on social media.

And his lawyer, Mr Kiiza, on Tuesday told journalists that his client had been “kidnapped” by military men.

Following the incident, the European Union and the US called “for his release, consistent with the magistrate's order.”

“We also continue to monitor closely actions by individuals to undermine rule of law and democracy in Uganda,” the US Mission in Uganda said.  

“In democratic societies, rule of law and judicial independence must be respected, especially by security agencies.” - DAILY MONITOR

  • Kenyan policemen take position during an operation in the Nairobi slum, on October 28, 2017 FILE 
  • Officers drawn from the Directorate of Criminal Investigations have arrested two suspects wanted  in the United Kingdom.

    The two were arrested in Nairobi's upmarket Kilimani area on Wednesday, January 26, following a raid by transnational and organised crimes detectives.

    The two aged 24 and 21 years respectively were reportedly busted in different apartments within the leafy suburb during the raid.

    GSU officers pitcured during an operation.
    GSU officers at a past riot in Nairobi CBD

    According to sleuths who acted on intelligence leading to their apprehension, they have been hiding in that area since sneaking into the country back in 2019.

    The duo has been on the radar of British officials to answer to murder charges as they are linked to the killing of a young man who was stabbed and left for dead in the UK. 

    The two are now being processed by DCI detectives before being extradited to the UK to answer to their charges.

    "British officials have been looking for the fugitives to answer to murder charges, after the brutal murder of a young man who was stabbed and left for dead in the U.K," DCI stated.

    The uptown Nairobi estate in recent times has been characterised by increased crime cases ranging from money laundering, drug trafficking among others.

    Also, a number of foreigners and even locals have been nabbed within Kilimani area.

    The arrest of the two comes just days after another wanted fugitive was nabbed in Nairobi.  The fugitive was on police radar over his alleged involvement in the smuggling of individuals to Europe in a human trafficking syndicate.

    The foreigner was nabbed on December 16, after a dragnet was set following reports that he was in Kenya at the time. 

    He was on red alert since 2017 over his involvement in the smuggling of men, women, and children with a wide network in Europe.

    A file image of the entrance of the DCI headquarters along Kiambu road.
    A file image of the entrance of the DCI headquarters along Kiambu road.By GEOFFREY LUTTA KENYANS.CO.KE
This video grab from an AFPTV video taken on Jan. 21, 2022 in Kampala, shows Kakwenza Rukirabashaija, a prominent Ugandan satirical writer and an outspoken government critic, appearing in court for a bail hearing via a video link from prison.
Former LinkedIn Africa boss Thogori Chege Karago, who was found dead in her hotel room in Nairobi. Thogori’s body was discovered on January 21.  

Police have launched investigations into the death of former LinkedIn Africa boss Thogori Chege Karago, who was found dead in her hotel room in Nairobi. Thogori’s body was discovered on January 21.

She was 33. Preliminary investigations show she was suffering from diabetes and was on medication. Her room was found locked from inside. 

She was alone. Kilimani police boss Muturi Mbogo said the deceased did not have any physical injuries at that time.

“There are indications she was diabetic but that is subject to further investigations. For now, we treat it as natural and sudden death,” he said.

Following her death, thousands of people continued to send their condolences to the tech guru family friends and relatives.

According to her website, Thogori was the founder of SpeakEasy, a content creator accelerator and marketplace which focused on amplifying the voices of women and children creators.

She was also a senior software engineer, a highly sought after start-up angel investor, product manager, advisor and sat on the advisory board of six start-ups led by minority founders.

On top of her achievements was her former role as the Senior Software Engineer & Product Manager at LinkedIn and the Head of Research and Development for the African continent. 

In this role, Thogori was in charge of overseeing LinkedIn’s growth on the African continent with the vision to create economic opportunity for every member of the African workforce.

Prior to this, Thogori led the monetisation team on subscriptions products at LinkedIn, where her team worked on connecting job seekers with the knowledge and skills they need to succeed in today’s hiring marketplace.

“She loves building technology products that positively impact people’s’ lives.

Having grown up in Nairobi, Kenya, she is particularly passionate about doing so in developing countries,” indicated the website.

Love life

She was also the co-founder and CTO of Pink Coconuts, an LGBTQIA+ travel community and platform.

According to her partner in business and life, tech entrepreneur, designer and human rights advocate from Barbados, Donnya Pigott or Zi, Thogori, or T as they called her was an effervescent soul who was open and kind to every person she met.

“She wanted to give to the LGBTQ community and that’s why she was drawn to the purpose of Pink Coconuts too. She wanted to improve the lives of black people across the world. She cared deeply about black women, artistes and creators and LGBTQ people,” she says.

The two met at Tech Beach in Jamaica in 2018 and made it official in 2020. During the pandemic, Zi recalls flying all the way from Barbados to be with her in Africa.

While Zi worked on Pink Coconuts, a startup she created before she met T, they worked on their ideas separately. Thogori was working on her startup called Speak Easy, a platform and community for Black Women creators and Children.

“She loved Tik Tok, the dances, the music, the jokes…she called herself a tiktok activist because of the joy it brought to her and to people. She was also an amazing public speaker. T loved adventure and she loved children and children loved her,” she adds.

Inspired many Thogori was recognised by Forbes as one of the women changing culture, industry and the face of tech, making the list of top 30 under 30 in 2018 which according to Zi, it was something that she was proud of.

Here in Kenya, the tech world too is mourning her death. Digital Lenders Association chairman Kevin Mutiso said Thogori’s death is a big blow to the tech world. “Thogori was a pioneer in the IT field and an inspiration to many and a dear friend.

Personally, she was kind to me when I was in San Francisco where she offered me a tour of the Linked in headquarters and that inspired me greatly to try and build billion dollar businesses in Africa. In addition to that, she exposed me to her network that I will be forever grateful for.

She loved my daughter too and always gave her books that would make her know that women could achieve what they set their mind to. For me, I have lost a friend and the tech ecosystem has lost a pioneer,” he said.

“I proposed and she said yes and we applied to be married. We went to the US to make it official. Health complications interrupted our relationship, but we still wore rings. Our love was the most beautiful thing I’ve experienced,” she recalls. By Hariet James, People Daily

President Uhuru Kenyatta with the State Counsellor and Minister for Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China Mr Wang Yi when they unveiled a commemorative plaque during an inspection tour of the ongoing construction of the new offshore Kipevu Oil Terminal at the Port of Mombasa.

What you need to know:

  • The fallout from the novel coronavirus and its increasing mutations is apparent.
  • It has laid bare the gap between the industrialised North and developing South.

With millions of individuals in the global South at increased risk of falling severely ill and potentially dying from Covid-19, there is increased focus on the role of development cooperation on securing livelihoods, particularly official development assistance, or foreign aid, which is its most visible and quantifiable modality.  

This virus, whose origin is shrouded in international controversy, is creating inordinate damage and suffering in developing countries where households and individuals lack access to quality, affordable and reliable healthcare. This situation is compounded by widespread unemployment and absence of social safety nets.

The fallout from the novel coronavirus and its increasing mutations is apparent. It has laid bare the gap between the industrialised North and developing South and makes the push for the timely achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) almost impossible. Vaccine inequality and uneven recovery between countries, along with travel bans and restrictions, are becoming a potential source of conflict in international relations.

While advanced countries have been able to leverage technology to reasonably mitigate against the most disruptive impact from measures such as social distancing, lockdowns and closures, some ill-prepared countries in the South have not been as lucky. Without a fallback plan, Uganda closed schools for two years, a steep cost that learners must bear.

The pandemic has spawned labour market imbalances, disrupted supply lines, triggered food shortages and created inflationary pressure. In the developing countries, the pandemic has not only affected learners in the form of irrecoverable time but also created serious mental and behavioural issues that range from mild anxiety to suicidality.

Growth-killing taxes

In Kenya, mental health challenges have reached crisis levels, as can be deduced from increased prevalence of suicide, domestic violence and homicide. While many of these cases will go undiagnosed, receiving therapy is simply unaffordable — even to those holding decently paying white-colour jobs. 

This pandemic will keep destroying livelihoods and claiming lives. Amidst rising cost of living, there has been a steady loss of jobs and income at household levels. That translates to falling productivity and sustained loss of tax revenue. 

President Uhuru Kenyatta has no choice but impose unpopular, growth-killing taxes if he is to raise revenue to service an unsustainably large sovereign debt. He is also likely to be advised — by the IMF — to deal with deficit financing by cutting back on subsidies to state enterprises and reducing social sector funding, including to healthcare and education. 

Heavily taxed parents will pay even more, in form of fees. Expectedly, many learners are likely to drop out of school, bringing to a crashing end the “free universal education” utopia first articulated by President Mwai Kibaki 20 years ago. Clearly, instead of higher incomes, the global South is likely to fall further behind.

What role can international development cooperation play in at-risk countries like Kenya? There is a clear need for development partners to attach greater significance to governance and accountability — perhaps much more than they do with development finance. 

Disclose financial dealings

Partners, including China, must embrace open and inclusive development cooperation forums, be willing to disclose their financial dealings with the state (no matter how embarrassing or inconvenient) and empower the public to demand accountability. 

Resident ambassadors in Nairobi can help by questioning the source of fabulous wealth flaunted by duplicitous government officials and their family and associates. They must condemn normalised use of state power and resources to advance narrow, partisan and personal interests. 

Kenya enjoys favourable treatment by traditional and emerging partners. Over the years, its relations have translated to unaccountable levels of concessional and non-concessional finance, ostensibly for development of projects. 

It is imperative for partners to lift the lid on secretive financial arrangements, including the Eurobond, as well as contracts related to the construction and operation of the SGR, the dry port in Naivasha and the Nairobi Expressway, which the government has promoted as a game-changing PPP. 

Providing more foreign aid without a proper third-party audit of the country’s debt and financial dealings would engender impunity and corruption and embolden the masters of state capture. This is an urgent cancer whose tumours the international community can help to remove. By Kennedy Chesoli, Nation

Mr Chesoli is a New York-based development economist and global policy expert. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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