County Secretary urges farmers to register for subsidized fertilizer

The acting County Secretary for Nakuru County Dr Samuel Mwaura has called on farmers to register with the Ministry of Agriculture to be included in the subsidized fertilizer program.

Dr Mwaura made the remarks while addressing the faithful at AIPCA St. Christopher Maai Mahiu church. He represented Governor Susan Kihika during a Thanksgiving ceremony for the AIPCA Naivasha-Narok Diocese. The function was presided over by the Right Rev. Bishop Moses Maina.

During the event, various parishes were appreciated for exemplary performance in the last year and prayers for better performance next year were conducted. The County Secretary took the opportunity to thank the church for supporting the government and for instilling morals in society.

In addition, the County Secretary urged the youth to join together and get training on entrepreneurship and to be able to access Government procurement opportunities. He assured residents of the efficient provision of services to all.

Leaders present were; the MP for Njoro Charity Kathambi, area MCA Eliud Kamau, MCA Stanley Karanja of Naivasha East, MCA Alex Mbugua – Lakeview, MCA Mwangi Muraya – Viwandani, MCA Virginia Wamaitha – Hellsgate and nominated MCAs Hon Ann Njaguara and Hon Ann Gitee.

Also present were Chief Officers – Samwel Ndegwa – Trade, Ken Mugo – Roads, Stella Mbaire – Youths, Sports, talent and Vocational Training and Joyce Ncece – Disaster Management.

Donors lauded for contribution towards Soar Kenya Academy’s success

Barut-based Soar Kenya Academy Management has lauded all donors and well-wishers for their contribution towards various projects in the School.

The Schools’ Director James Yegon says donors and well-wishers have played key role in the shaping of the School.

According to him, the school has been able to fully prepare for the Juniro Secondary through the help of individuals and families that support education.

Taking to his official Facebook account, Yegon pointed out these individuals and families lauding them for the good gesture.

“Dear Henny Niessen , Julia Niessen  Niessen family and the friend of Niessen family. Receive many thanks from Soar Kenya academy family for your generous donation towards sponsorship of six pupils for one full year and finishing of our junior secondary school classrooms” he wrote.

The school has been doing well in the National Examinations.

In the 2022 class eight national examination KCPE, all the 35 candidates who enrolled scored 300 marks and above.

Yegon says, the success is attributed to the good motivation that teachers in the school receive.

The school has also been helping needy children from the village of Kilelwet through full sponsorship of their education.

Abduba Tumme appointed KANU Women Congress National Secretary

Former Nakuru County Government Chief officer Abduba Tumme has been appointed KANU Women Congress National Secretary.

She takes over from Gladys Chania in the new appointments done by KANU National chairman Gideon Moi.

In her acceptance message, Tumme took to her social media thanking the party leadership for appointing her.

“I am humbled to have been appointed KANU Women Congress National Secretary by our distinguished National Chairman Gideon K. Moi. Thank you Sir for your confidence in me.  Forever indebted, forever KANU” she said.

Tumme served as Chief officer Culture and Social Services as wells as Resource mobilization in Nakuru  before she resigned to join active politics in Marsabit County.

Joy as over 100 widows in Kilelwet village get Christmas donation from well-wishers

Over 100 widows in Kelelwet village in Barut, Nakuru West Sub county have benefited from food donations courtesy of well-wishers .

The widows who spoke to this writer narrated how harsh life has been since the demise of their husbands.

Led by Christine Koske,they lauded the well-wishers for stepping in for their welfare especially during this moment of harsh economic times.

According to them, life in the eyes of a widow has not been roses with most of them struggling to make ends meet.

They say their struggle has been just to ensure their children have something on the table to keep them moving.

Widow Christine who lost her husband in 2007,says life has not been easy on her side with struggles here and there.

She has to play the role of father and mother at the same time to make her children happy despite the absence of father.

“Life has not been easy as a widow. I keep on moving to ensure my children are okay. Such a donation is of great help” she said.

To them, the donation will go a long way in ensuring their families have something during this festive season.

Sentiments echoed by Wambui Koske Arap Too who stated she became a widow 20 years ago following the demise of her husband.

The donation, she said, will help her children feel the presence of their father in the family as he was the breadwinner.

“At least my children will feel the presence of their father who used to treat them during the Christmas season” said Wambui.

James Yegon who is the Director Soar Kenya Academy and President-elect Rotary Club of Nakuru for the year 2023/2024 stated that the initiative to assist widows through food supply programs in the community will go on.

He noted that through friends from Rotary Club of Davis USA and other well wishers, the program has continued to impact positively to a number of widows in the community.

“We have continued to partner with many well-wishers in serving the community and more so widows” he said.

Yegon used the moment to call on well-wishers to join hands and put a smile on the vulnerable in so donations were from Rotarians,Mark Clendenin,Virginia Neutzling,Sue Marzano,Dan Fuline,Bob Carr,Bill Liber, all from Rotary club of Canton,Ohio USA.

Rotarian Eldon Johnson who is also the founder of HOPE organization, Rotarians David and Mitch from the Rotary club of Davis sunrise and Terry Schadeberg and Deanna Schadeberg and anonymous.

KCB Group Plc Completes Acquisition of DRC-based Trust Merchant Bank (TMB)

KCB Group Plc has announced the completion of the acquisition of Trust Merchant Bank SA (TMB) after receiving all the regulatory approvals. The Group now owns 85% stake in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) based lender.

Acquisition arising from delivering innovative financial services to customers, growing linkages between customers in our region and realizing operational efficiencies which will deliver tangible value to key stakeholders” said Mr Russo.

In the nine months ending September 2022, KCB Group Plc’s net profit rose 21.4% to KShs.30.6 billion on the back of sustained growth from both Net interest and non-funded income lines. This was a jump from KShs.25.2 billion reported for the same period last year.

TMB is one of DRC’s largest banks, with US$1.7 billion in total assets and a strong offering in Retail, SME, Corporate and Digital banking channels.  TMB’s bank branch network of 109 branches is supported by a substantial agency banking network, alongside a representative office in Belgium. In the DRC, the Bank commands an 11 percent market share as measured by total assets and is home to more than one in five banks accounts in the country.

Kakuzi releases its third Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) report

Listed agri-business firm Kakuzi Plc has announced the release of its third Environmental, Social, and Governance (ESG) report.

With the report’s release, the Nairobi Securities Exchange (NSE) listed superfoods grower now becomes the first Agricultural segment counter on the local bourse to voluntarily release its ESG report this year.

ESG is a framework upon which companies develop and deploy their sustainability initiatives, including identifying, assessing and managing risks that emanate from social and environmental issues affecting their entire value and supply chains.

Speaking at the release of the Kakuzi ESG Report 2021, aptly themed: Growing Communities, Responsible Value Chains, Kakuzi PLC Managing Director Mr Chris Flowers said the firm consistently tracks and measures its ESG impacts.

“Acutely aware that corporates can and do face challenges, some of which impact the society we operate within and our environment, this ESG report details how we are identifying and managing those,” Mr Flowers said. He acknowledged that: “at Kakuzi, we will continue doing the right thing and correcting our course where we need to. By tracking and publicly reporting our ESG touchpoints and other key social indicators, we are demonstrating our commitment to remain a responsible corporate citizen of Kenya. It is the right thing to do.”

At the event presided over by NSE Board Chairman Kiprono Kittony, assisted by NSE CEO Geoffrey Odundo, the Kakuzi team leader cited Kakuzi as one of the first Companies in the region to put in place an Operational Grievance Mechanism (OGM) The Company has also put in place an Independent Human Rights Advisory Committee (IHRAC) chaired by former Attorney General Prof Githu Muigai, to ensure proper handling of Human Rights related issues. Kakuzi’s IHRAC is benchmarked against the United Nations Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) global standards for preventing and addressing human rights abuses by businesses and companies.

Alongside IHRAC, Kakuzi, he said, has also operationalized the first independent operational-level grievance mechanism dubbed “SIKIKA”, headed by Justice (Rtd) Violet Mavisi. “At Kakuzi, we believe in reaching the highest standards and do not shy away from the challenges in trying to achieve this, even when faced with headwinds,” Mr Flowers said.

While confirming Kakuzi’s support for the national tree planting campaign aimed at attaining a minimum of 30 per cent forest cover by 2032, the Company, he pledged, will continue to play its part. “We are complementing tree planting with other ‘climate smart practices’, such as how we cook our Food.  At Kakuzi we have invested considerable resources in our Jiko Kisasa project.  Now over 600 families in our surrounding communities are cooking on these energy efficient stoves, reducing their demand for wood by at least 30%, ” Mr Flowers said.

As part of the firm’s corporate citizenship endeavors’, Kakuzi has continued to be involved in many community projects including economic empowerment, health, education, clean water and sanitation, environment conservation, and climate action.

In 2021, Kakuzi provided more than 2,500 pupils in 28 learning institutions with classroom furniture. The Company also constructed sanitation facilities for use by over   6,000 pupils. During the year, the rehabilitation of Kakuzi Primary School was a major project giving the school a significant facelift aimed at improving the quality of education at the school.

On economic empowerment and corporate social investment initiatives under the model of local partnerships, Kakuzi continues to make avocado seedlings available to community members.

In 2021, farmers sourced over 29,000 quality Hass avocado seedlings from Kakuzi. Kakuzi PLC continues to empowers the communities with knowledge and skills on avocado production and offers free maturity testing for smallholder farmers with a view to addressing quality concerns and improving farmers’ income.

The Kakuzi Avocado Smallholder program has 3500 registered farmers. During the reporting period, Farmers enjoyed a total payment of KSh57.9 million and access to the growing international market.

Additionally, the firm got involved in other initiatives like the beekeeping programme which donated bee hives and conducted training to several self-help groups as part of support to diversify the community’s income.

“As part of enumerating the impacts of the company, supply chain sustainability was pivoted to promote human rights, fair labor practices, environmental progress, and corporate governance. The COVID-19 pandemic was also highlighted, including the obvious dangers the business had to overcome within the supply and value chains. To make resilience, agility, and sustainability a reality, Kakuzi was able to mainstream transparency in how we conduct our business to protect Human Rights across the different divisions of the Company,” said Mr. Flowers.

“One of our major highlights during the year was the journey to access the China market. The China fruit market is very advanced as far as the consumption of agricultural commodities including superfoods such as avocado is concerned. The regulatory entry process was stringent, and the consumers are incredibly discerning and quality conscious. However, we were up to the task and committed to maintaining the Kakuzi quality consistency for all our exports to China, among other markets. I am hopeful that this will work to reveal just how responsible value chains can grow communities.” Mr. Flowers said.

Soar Kenya Academy shines in 2022 KCPE

Soar Kenya Academy in Nakuru West Sub County has hit headlines with good results in 2022 KCPE.

All the 35 candidates who sat the Examination at the centre scored 300 marks and above.

The top candidate Maxwell Modecai scored 393 while the least got 310 marks.

Top girl at the school Winnie Mwango scored 374 marks.

The school recorded a Meanscore of 357.43 with 25 students scoring 350 marks and above.

Reacting to the results, Soar Kenya Academy Director James Yegon noted termed it ‘Good News’.

He commended the teachers and donors for the support towards the success.

“This is good news!! We presented 35 candidates to the Kenya national examination council(KNEC) the leading got 393 and the least got 310 school mean score 357.43. Congratulations to all our candidates and teachers.To our donors,Thank you so much for your support.God bless you” said Yegon.

Why County Governments should invest more in CHVs

County Governments as well as the National Government should invest more in Community Health Volunteers for a healthy nation.

The call was made during a meeting of stakeholders that brought together Community Health Volunteers, local administrators and community health champions, a meeting that was convened by Nakuru-based Haven of Dreams Organization in partnership with Midrift Human Rights Network Nakuru.

Speaking after the meeting, Kevin Karuga from Family Health Options Kenya stated that it is time for a policy framework in place that will see matters CHVs addressed and their welfare taken care of.

While noting the huge work done by CHVs, Karuga urged the Counties and national government to invest more in the lot for a better healthcare system.

“I know the Counties are busy with the Level 3 and 4 but the real investment should be right from level 1 and 2 where the CHVs play a key role. We need to start thinking of how we can invest in the CHVs who are doing great work at community level” he said.

Similar sentiments echoed by Chief Executive Officer Haven of Dreams Zipporah Nyangara Mumbi.

According to her, CHVs play a key role in the health sector especially at community level for they interact with locals often.

She at the same time called for more sensitization of the lot on matters Sexual Reproductive Health.

Nyangara noted that SRHS is key and most community members are facing challenges in accessing knowledge on the same hence leading to more menace of teenage pregnancies, and other diseases.

She was quick to add that Haven of Dreams will continue to partner with other organizations in sensitization of communities on matters sexual reproductive health.

“This is the second phase of the sensitization and we hope to move to other sub-counties and wards so that we can have a society that is free from stigma once everyone has knowledge on SRHS” she said.

On his part Francis Shinali-one of the CHVs from Nakuru East Sub County noted that there is a gap as far as the policy framework on SRHS is concerned.

He challenged members of the County Assembly of Nakuru to expedite the passage of such to enable smooth sexual and reproductive health services.

Shinali also called on the need to ensure CHVs’ welfare is taken care of.

“ We just need a better policy framework in place on matters reproductive health services” he said.

Kihika vows to work closely with stakeholders in addressing high HiV infection rate among youth

Nakuru Governor Susan Kihika has vowed to work closely with stakeholders in addressing the high cases of HIV infections among young people in Nakuru County.

Addressing Journalists on Tuesday, Kihika noted a worrying trend where statistics indicate high prevalence among  youth of  24 years and below.

She however noted that this could be due to lack of proper sensitization and awareness.

It is for this reason that she reiterated the need for collaboration in prevention through budget allocation for Sexual Reproductive health services and awareness.

“As a county we shall be working with other stakeholders as well as. National government to address the same. Apart from the same we shall also ensure budget allocation towards sensitization as well as treatment for those infected” said Kihika.

She spoke when she hosted the US Ambassador to Kenya Ms Margaret “Meg” Whitman.

Kihika lauded the US government for being  a key development partner with Nakuru County.

“We appreciate the various projects and programs supported through the US Embassy, especially in the health sector. We look forward to more partnerships in agriculture, renewable energy, water provision, value addition and IT” she stated.

The US Ambassador Ambassador reiterated commitment towards ensuring a better society through the various programs of partnership.

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