Thursday, 23 August 2012

Rescuers load the charred bodies of the deceased into a Police van following a fierce fire that razed a dormitory at Asumbi Girls Boarding Primary Schools on August 22, 2012. Photo / Nation Correspondent 







10 pupils feared dead in dormitory inferno

Rescuers load the charred bodies of the deceased into a Police van following a fierce fire that razed a dormitory at Asumbi Girls Boarding Primary Schools on August 22, 2012. Photo / Nation Correspondent 
Posted  Wednesday, August 22  2012 at  23:32

At least ten pupils of Asumbi Boarding Primary School, in Homa Bay County, are feared dead after a fire razed their dormitory on Wednesday night.
Initial reports indicate that the ten were among class seven and eight pupils attending August holiday tuition in the school. The institution is run by the Asumbi Catholic Church parish.
The fire is suspected to have been caused by an electricity surge after a daylong power blackout in the area.
Unconfirmed reports also indicate the dormitory's door may have been bolted from outside.
Parents whose children were at the school began streaming at the institution as soon as word on the fire went out. They were however frustrated by the school's administrators who were not forthcoming with details of the inferno.
Not even the efforts by the Police and Red Cross to get the school's administrators to give an official statement worked, as the Catholic nuns and teachers went in hiding at the convent.
Rangwe DO Daniel Cheruiot, who spoke at the scene, said he counted at least eight charred remains of girls.
“Eight bodies have been recovered from the scene and taken to the Homa Bay District Hospital Mortuary,” he said.
Mr Cheruiyot said the girls had been trapped inside the dormitory, which appeared to have been locked from outside.
Homa Bay OCPD Francis Kumut also said about ten girls were feared dead in the fire.
Parish Priest Reverend Aloise Okumu said the pupils were under the care of Catholic nuns.

Man City line up £30m bid for Luiz as Chelsea star is fined for revealing injury on Twitter

By jacko
Wanted man: Luiz
Wanted man: Luiz
Manchester City have turned their attention to Chelsea defender David Luiz after being frustrated in their attempts to bring Daniel Agger to the Etihad Stadium.
City boss Roberto Mancini has stepped up his search for a new defender after Micah Richards was ruled out for 10 weeks.
The club were already lacking defensive cover before Richards picked up an ankle injury at the Olympics, and after several bids for Agger were rejected by Liverpool, they have now had a £30million bid turned down by Chelsea for Brazilian international Luiz, according to The Sun.
The 25-year-old was left out Chelsea's squad for Wednesday night's 4-2 win over Reading, with the player citing a knee injury as the reason on his Twitter account.
But The Sun are reporting that Luiz - who arrived at Chelsea in January 2011 in a £24million deal from Benfica - was in fact left out as the club were continuing negotiations with City over his sale.
The player has been fined for his use of the social networking site to break the news of his injury. Chelsea manager Roberto Di Matteo said: 'This social media thing is all around us now. We’ll deal with it internally.'
Barely missed: Chelsea secured a 4-2 victory over Reading without David Luiz
Barely missed: Chelsea secured a 4-2 victory over Reading without David Luiz

Mancini wants to add reinforcements to his squad before the transfer window closes next Friday to ensure that the defending Premier League champions are not overtaken by their rivals.
Chelsea are set to take their spending to £70m with the acquisition of right-back Cesar Azpilicueta from Marseille, and Manchester United have already splashed the cash on Robin van Persie and Shinji Kagawa.

City have made signing a centre-back a priority, with the ageing Kolo Toure and the error-prone Stevan Savic currently the only alternatives to their first-choice pairing of Vincent Kompany and Joleon Lescott.

New team-mates? Luiz challenges City's Sergio Aguero during the Community Shield
New team-mates? Luiz challenges City's Aguero during the Community Shield

Mancini is also set to conclude a £5m deal for Swansea winger Scott Sinclair this week, while he is also in the market for another midfielder - despite Jack Rodwell having arrived last week in a £12m deal.

Chelsea would prefer to keep Luiz in their ranks, though they may be tempted by an astronomical offer given that Azpilicueta's arrival allows Branislav Ivanovic to move to centre-back and compete with Gary Cahill for a place alongside Blues skipper John Terry.

Wednesday, 22 August 2012

‘Our new signings can make the difference’

By Chris Harris

Mikel Arteta is confident that Arsenal can thrive without Robin van Persie and Alex Song - especially once their new signings settle in.

The Spanish midfielder operated in a deeper midfield role against Sunderland on Saturday in the absence of Song and his passing range and positional awareness helped Arsenal dominate their opening Premier League fixture.

Arsène Wenger's side had to settle for a 0-0 draw after squandering their chances but Arteta saw enough to suggest that Arsenal's new-look side will compete for honours this season.

"I think we are looking good," he said. "We looked really organised on Saturday, just maybe in the final third we didn't take the chances we should have done.

"It will take a while because there have been some new players coming in and we are building a new team. We have lost some important players too so we will need some time. But we wanted to start with a win and that is why we are disappointed.

"We know that our new players can make the difference as well. We will have to give them a chance to settle into a new place."

Arteta was a regular alongside Song in his first season at Emirates Stadium but he linked up well with fellow Spaniard Santi Cazorla and the fit-again Abou Diaby at the weekend - with plenty of other midfield options waiting in the wings.

"I felt really comfortable when I played with Alex last year, he was a terrific player," said Arteta. "But if he and the Club decided that the best option was for him to leave we have to accept it. I think we are good enough to carry on without him."

Michel to coach moribund Stars

PHOTO | FILE Former France football coach Henri Michel takes Cote d’Ivoire players through the paces during a training session. The Frenchman is set to be unveiled next week.
In Summary
  • Ex-France tactician, to be unveiled on Tuesday, seen as Kenya’s vehicle to football success
  • 64-year-old Michel beat other top international coaches, among them Adel Amrouche, Tom Saintfiet and Raymond Domenech, to the job
  • The Frenchman knows the rugged terrain of African football, having been in the continent for two decades since he first coached Cameroon in 1994

Former France coach Henri Michel will next week be named coach of the national football team, Harambee Stars.
Football Kenya Federation (FKF) chairman Sam Nyamweya confirmed to the Nation on Tuesday that Michel has accepted to take over the reins at the national team and will be unveiled by Prime Minister Raila Odinga.
“We have finalised negotiations,” Nyamweya said. “We are working closely with the Prime Minister, who has played a big role in helping us scout for a top coach.”
During the launch of Harambee Stars sponsorship deal with East African Breweries Limited, the Premier suggested that the government would consider picking up the bill of paying for a good coach.
The 64-year-old Michel beat other top international coaches to the final line when, last week, FKF whittled down their shortlist to four – Adel Amrouche, Tom Saintfiet, Raymond Domenech and Michel.
“We need a qualified foreign coach who can turn around the country’s football,” Nyamweya added.
“You can see how Uganda and Tanzania have improved over the years while Kenya cannot qualify for Africa Cup of Nations, let alone even make it to the to the second round of the regional championships.
“That is not to say our local coaches are not qualified, but you have seen where we are with the homegrown coaches who have handled the team.
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“We now need to try elsewhere.”
Ability to bring success
Michel’s papers speak volumes about his ability to bring success to Harambee Stars but whether Kenya will manage to pay him also raises questions.
He guided the French national team to the Olympic gold medal in 1984 and the third place at the 1986 World Cup.
The Frenchman knows the rugged terrain of African football, having been in the continent for two decades since he first coached Cameroon in 1994.
Having also had two stints with Morocco – in 1995 and 2000, in 2001 to 2002 Michel took Tunisia to the World Cup, the same result he registered with Cote d’Ivoire in 2006. He also coached Zamalek of Egypt, Mamelodi Sundowns (South Africa) and Morocco’s Raja Casablanca.
His last job was as coach of the Equatorial Guinean national team.
Michel however faces a Herculean task. Kenya lies at position 126 in the global football ranking, the country’s worst ever, and the team’s fortunes continue to dwindle.
Already out of the race to the 2013 Nations Cup, Kenya’s chances of making it to the 2014 World Cup Finals in Brazil look bleak following their loss to Namibia and a draw with Malawi.
Two weeks ago, Nyamweya said part of the work of the new coach would be to help in youth development and work with the FKF technical department to identify areas to set up youth centres.

by jacko kimz

Education minister Mutula Kilonzo is sure to provoke a storm. Beyond the short-skirts-for-schoolgirls brouhaha, Mr Kilonzo has now raised an important policy issue that must be addressed for the sake of our children.
The minister’s directive banning holiday classes has been opposed by the Kenya National Union of Teachers and generally defied or ignored by both public and private schools.
The show of defiance illustrates just how officialdom has become impotent in the brave new dispensation, yet he raised an issue that must be taken up at official government policy level rather than be seen as just the roadside policy declarations of an individual minister.
Many, many years ago, when schoolchildren were being overworked with the new 8-4-4 system, then Vice-President Mwai Kibaki broke ranks with the official line and openly declared support for a more relaxed curriculum.
I still recall the memorable words he issued to the effect that children must be allowed to be children.
That remains true today as it was all those years ago. Children must have time for play, leisure, and relaxation.
That is a fact widely acknowledged, but even in the Kibaki era, we have seen only half-hearted efforts to reform the education system.
It is still focused inordinately on information overload and the mad and ruinous competition to pass examinations and place your school atop the primary or secondary league tables.
I must declare that I have a personal interest in this matter because I have a Standard Eight child who is today constrained to break her holidays and go back to class.
I have attended meetings at the school where the issue of children being overburdened has come up, and usually left with the impression that both parents and teachers have forgotten the needs of the little ones.
In many places, school administrators are obsessed with securing good results for the prestige of the institutions.
The parents, in turn, want to realise their own dreams , and satisfy their own egos in examination success for their young ones.
The end result is maddening workload that beats slavery. Little children are being forced to start classes at 6.30 in the morning and study continuously up to 6pm, with only an hour’s break for lunch. They will go to school also on Saturdays.
And even after leaving class so late every day, and making an allowance for an hour or more to reach home, they will still have mountains of homework to get through.
Pre-teen children are being forced to stay up to 10 or 11pm every night, buried in schoolbooks.
That is criminal. As a journalist I work long and unconventional hours, which often are way above those recommended by the Ministry of Labour and our own human resource — formerly “personnel” — managers.
But I am an adult, and it cannot be right that little children are being condemned to put in such crazy hours.
Not too long ago, during a visit to our alma mater, Lenana  School, many of us were shocked to learn that many of the intensive sporting and other extra-curricular clubs and activities had been abandoned.
The explanation from staff was lack of time because of the need for evening and Saturday classes.
The irony was that when Lenana placed such a high premium on compulsory sports and other activities outside the classroom, it ranked high in examination rankings, often in the top five nationally.
Now all the time is spent in the classroom, and the academic performance has plummeted to push the once prestigious school way outside the premier league.
The excuse offered by teachers, and parents, for the workload is the need to complete the syllabus. What seems beyond their comprehension is that academic excellence is achieved through quality. Not quantity.
You can only hammer so much information into a tired brain. If completing the syllabus is too taxing, then Mr Kilonzo must move with speed to have it reviewed.
We all want our young ones to get quality education, but we do not want to create mindless automatons drilled just to pass examinations. Neither must we condemn them to premature stress, burnout, and worse.

Michuki widow Josephine Watiri dies in Nairobi

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Josephine Watiri Michuki, the widow of former Environment minister John Michuki, died at the Nairobi Hospital August 22, 2012
Josephine Watiri Michuki, the widow of former Environment minister John Michuki, died at the Nairobi Hospital August 22, 2012  NATION MEDIA GROUP

Posted  Wednesday, August 22  2012
In Summary
  • Mrs Michuki died at the Nairobi Hospital Wednesday morning where she was undergoing treatment.
  • Her death comes six months after Mr Michuki passed on.

Josephine Watiri Michuki, the widow of former Environment minister John Michuki, has died.
Mrs Michuki died at the Nairobi Hospital Wednesday morning where she was undergoing treatment.
"Very, very painful. Our mother-in law, Mrs Josephine Michuki, died early today at Nairobi hospital," said former Information minister Mutahi Kagwe on his Facebook page.
"Good people, we desperately need your prayers."
Mr Kagwe is a son-in-law of the Michukis.
Prime Minister Raila Odinga said Mrs Michuki's death was "a double blow to the family of the late honourable Michuki".
"She was a strong and courageous woman who had shown she was capable of stepping into her late husband's shoes and provide guidance to our people on development and political issues," mourned Mr Odinga.
"I pray for the family and friends at this time of grief."
Her death comes months after Mr Michuki passed on. The minister died in February, aged 80.

Sahin update, Arsenal's €10m man set to leave

sahinArsenal fans were rather expecting an announcement of the loan signing of Nuri Sahin today. He’s supposedly had a photoshoot and medical at Arsenal’s training ground, but no move has materialised. The deal appears to have stalled.
Then again there was a day of silence after Cazorla’s medical when everyone started panicking, but there seems to be more substance to the talk this time.

Mourinho is haggling

It’s documented that Jose Mourinho was loathe to allow Sahin to go to Arsenal, partially because they were offering a smaller loan fee, and he dislikes Wenger and didn’t want to help him. Which is dreadfully unprofessional.
Having allowed him to, it seems he’s stepped in and increased the price Arsenal must pay if they want him permanently after the loan. The new fee is believed to be around 14m, which hasn’t impressed Arsenal, as that’s almost twice as much as he was signed for in the first place.
This has led to reports that Arsenal are prepared to back out of the deal and pursue other replacements. It’s unknown whether this is true, but we’ll operate on the assumption that it is.

Is Yann the Man?

The Rennes general manager has admitted that Yann M’Vila could move to Arsenal after all. His quote was “Arsenal? I don’t know, you’d have to ask Wenger.” That suggests he either doesn’t know, or is being coy.
This is a deal that’s been on and off all summer, and it’s difficult to tell if it will ever come off.  It seems possible that he’s the first alternative to Sahin if that deal doesn’t come off, or that he’ll be bought regardless. It seems more likely it’s one or the other, however.

One midfielder, one defender: That’s yer lot.

Continuing on his trend of being unusually forthcoming regarding transfers, Arsene Wenger told an interviewer that he wished to bring in a midfielder and a defender before the end of the transfer window. Amusingly, the last time he admitted he wished to bring in X player in x position, he signed Squillaci. Not to say that will be repeated.
One thing he hasn’t mentioned at all is an attacker, which continues to suggest that rumours of Fernando Llorente are unfounded, unless he’s being Arsene. Which he doesn’t seem to be, as he’s not denied working on deals at all.
Still, there’s nothing to suggest the midfielder couldn’t be a creative player, which was the main issue against Sunderland. And of course, a defender who could cover the full-back positions would help as well. With that said, Arsenal were in talks with Mirallas before he signed for Everton, so it’s possible Wenger is on the lookout for a striker.

Goodbye Andrey?

Andrey Arshavin arrived in St Petersburg today for what is described as a “business visit”, along with rumours that his old club Zenit, who he was at loan with the latter half of last season, have made a €10m bid for him. His time at Arsenal does seem to have come to an end, and that’s the best price Arsenal could get for him, so it seems very possible that’s him gone. He’s provided some great moments, and some equally frustrating ones. So it’s with mixed feelings he departs, though taking 80k off our wage bill.
Those are the stories that have emerged during today, and I’m sure as the window draws to a close there will be many more. Until tomorrow.

COMICARSENAL: RVP needs Walcott and Song to succeed

Robin played his first match yesterday and just like any other true Arsenal fan, It would be cool to see him end as the lowest goal scorer with no trophy.

Well, I got a pix of him crying in the game yesterday. Koscielny and Vermaelen enjoying themselves. Hope it ends this way when the season is over