COUPLES TO PAY MORE FOR MARRIAGE CERTIFICATES

Couples to pay more for marriage certificate

Couples to pay more for marriage certificate

Couples planning to get married in Kenya could soon be paying more for the marriage certificate following an increase in the cost of marriage certificates.

According to the clergy, who have protested the price hike, the cost of the marriage certificate book has risen by 150 per cent. Previously the  book with 100 leaflets cost sh 20,000 but the new booklet costs Sh25,000 yet it has only 50 leaves.

A directive issued to the church leaders by the  Attorney General, Githu Muigai, requires the ministers of faith, who have been officiating marriages, to renew their licenses  and also apply for the new marriage books which should be used from November 1 failure to which their licenses will be revoked.

As stipulated in section 50 of the Marriage Act 2014, which was assented on: 20th April, 2014 and commenced on 20th May, 2014, the ministers of faith are licensed to act as marriage officers through an application to the registrar of marriages.

Churches are also required to submit authentic records documenting all marriages that are scheduled to be conducted before November 1.

The cost of weddings continues to pose a challenge to many couples in Kenya who dream of getting married and the increment in the cost of the marriage certificate will only add more weight.

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KENYAN DENNIS KIMETTO SMASHES MARATHON RECORD

Kimetto30 year-old Kenyan Dennis Kimetto set the pace throughout Sunday’s Berlin Marathon and not only went on to win the race but also smashed through the previous record set in the same event last year by fellow Kenyan Wilson Kipsang, beating it by 26 seconds to set a world record time of 2 hours and 57 minutes.

In 2011 in the Boston marathon Kimetto came close to breaking the 2 hours 3 minutes’ barrier that has been the target of top marathon runners with a time of 2 hours, 3 minutes and 2 seconds. All the more remarkable is that Kimetto had only just recovered from a bout of malaria before competing in the Berlin marathon and in April he was unable to run or train because of a pulled hamstring.

KIMETTO’S REMARKABLE STORY

The record-breaking Berlin run is the latest highlight in Dennis Kimetto’s remarkable story. He only took up professional running five years ago and four years ago he was unable to gain a high school education due to a lack of fees. The Berlin win however, will net Kimetto €120,000 (Sh14 million)!

Caroline Chepkorir Kimetto, Dennis’s wife, was watching the race at their home in Eldoret and fainted with joy as he crossed the winning line.

Related coverage:

Kimetto sets new world record, Daily Nation

Champion’s win has Kimetto wife fainting for joy, Daily Nation

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FREEDOM OF THE PRESS IN KENYA DROPS

3rd-may-world-press-freedom-day-352013The freedom of the press in Kenya is declining according to the 2014 World Press Freedom Index compiled by Reporters Without Borders.

Kenya has dropped 19 places from last year to position 90 out of 180 countries this year, which is one of the most significant fall in Africa alongside Mali, the Central African Republic and Burundi. The decline in media freedom in Mali and in the Central African Republic has been attributed to conflict.

Parliament has been accused of curtailing media freedom through passing of retrogressive laws and pinpoints the government’s response to the media coverage during the terror attack at Westgate Mall.

“In Kenya, the government’s much criticized authoritarian response to the media’s coverage of the Westgate Mall attacks was compounded by dangerous parliamentary initiatives.” reads the report in part.

Journalists and media houses in the country suffered another blow last year when President Uhuru Kenyatta assented to Kenya Information and Communications (Amendment) Bill 2013.

Recently, the Parliamentary Powers and Privileges Bill, 2014, was tabled in parliament with the aim of preventing the media and public from scrutinizing the work of parliament.

Reporters Without Borders maintain that security must not be used as a pretext for gagging the media.

The report also cites that ‘’the movements of some countries in the index, which are indicative of their approach to freedom of information, has an impact not only on their own population but also on neighbouring countries because of their regional importance and influence and the fact that they are regarded – rightly or not – as models to be watched or followed.’’

Finland takes the lead in the index as the country that upholds the freedom of the press the most for the fourth year running, closely followed by Netherlands and Norway. Turkmenistan, North Korea and Eritrea score the lowest. China whose media situation is considered very wanting did not improve in its ranking as it dropped one place to position 175. The government of China still censors and jail bloggers and journalists who do not abide with their tyrannical law.

The new president of Iran, Hassan Rouhani had promised to improve freedom of information but has yet to make any implementations. The new regime still watches the media coverage closely especially those covering on the Syrian War.

The report indicates that countries that have been known to be democracies and uphold the rule of law like the US for instance have not set an example as far as upholding freedom of the press is concerned as freedom of information is “too often sacrificed to an overly broad and abusive interpretation of national security needs, marking a disturbing retreat from democratic practices.” Reads the report.

The United States (46th) recorded one of the most significant declines after falling 13 places since the last World Press Freedom Index report in 2013.

 

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HIGH COST OF LIVING AND UNEMPLOYMENT FORCING KENYANS TO SLEEP HUNGRY

graph 1

Majority of Kenyans earn Sh. 10,000 and below

Kenyans are distressed by the high cost of living (inflation) more than anything else according to a new report. IPSOS Kenya survey, Third Quarter SPEC (Social, Political, Economic and Cultural) Survey, found that, Kenyans identify the high cost of living and unemployment as the two most serious problems facing the country currently (33% and 15% respectively).

The survey reveals that despite the high cost of living that Kenyans have been forced to contend with,only 7% of the Kenyans sampled earn Sh. 40,000 and above while the majority (50%) earn less than Sh. 10,000.  Another 10% earn between Sh. 25,000 and Sh. 40,000 while 33% earn between Sh. 10,000-Sh. 25,000.

52 % of Kenyans believe that change in household’s economic condition has worsened  in the last three months, 26% were of the opinion that they stayed the same and  21% cited improvement. Kenya’s inflation rate stood at 6.68 percent in February 2014.

The study by IPSOS Kenya also revealed that a third of Kenyans go to bed hungry. Based on the regions sampled, more people in Nyanza (46%) went to bed hungry compared to 13% in Central. When the population was divided between urban and rural areas, 34 per cent of urban residents and 37 per cent in rural areas said they had at one time or another gone to bed hungry with more women (38%) than men (34%) acknowledging to have gone to bed hungry due to financial difficulties.

INSECURITY

graph 2

two thirds of Kenyans consider the threat from Alshabaab extremely high

Insecurity is also of high national concern and two thirds of Kenyans (68%) consider the threat from Al-Shabaab extremely high, with hardly anyone (3%) considering this terror group not a threat at all.

This appears to explain why only one-in-five Kenyans (19%) choose the option of “remain there as they are” when asked about their preferred policy regarding the future of the KDF in Somalia.

The remaining (75%), however, are divided as to their preferred policy option, between the following: bringing the KDF back only if they are replaced by other AU forces, bringing back the KDF to protect Kenya’s borders, bringing them back unconditionally.

NO TO REFERENDUM

Asked wether they support the demand by some leaders for a constitutional referendum on issues such as devolution a majority of the respondents (54%) said NO,(38%) YES and (8%) were just not sure.

When categorised by regions, 80% of the respondents from Central Province said no to referendum calls, followed by Rift Valley (68%), North Eastern (58%), Nairobi (56%) compared to 58% , 55%, 43% in Nyanza, Western, Coast and Eastern provinces respectively who said YES to the referendum calls.

Those opposed to the calls for referendum cited the cost implication and selfish political agendas as the reasons for not supporting it, while those in favour of the referendum were of the opinion that the Jubilee government has failed to deliver on its election pledges and that the referendum will ensure increased allocation of funds to the counties.

It's NO to referendum for majority of Kenyans

It’s NO to referendum for majority of Kenyans

The Ipsos’ Third Quarter SPEC Survey Report sampled of 2,059 adults was interviewed in the 47 counties between August 24 and September 1, with an error margin of two percent at 95 per cent degree of confidence.

 


 

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EQUITY BANK WINS CASE AGAINST SAFARICOM OVER THIN SIM TECHNOLOGY

equityEquity Bank has won the battle with giant mobile network operator Safaricom over its planned entry into mobile money transfer services by introducing the use of thin SIM card technology after The Communications Authority of Kenya (CA) and Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) dismissed Safaricom’s objections to the technology.

The giant telephony company had written to the regulators seeking to block Equity Bank’s, Finserve Africa from entering the lucrative mobile money services market using the paper-SIM tech on security grounds.

Safaricom maintained that the overlay SIM card would compromise the security of its 19 million money transfer service customers as the technology had the ability to quietly steal data from the main SIM, including the secret personal identification numbers and pass them to a third party.

The slim SIM technology allows for this particular card to be mounted on the already existing traditional SIM cards.

sim080714

The slim SIM technology that allows for this particular card to be mounted on the already existing traditional SIM cards

However, the CA board has only allowed Equity Bank, which won a mobile virtual network operator (MVNO) licence in April this year, to use the Taisys thin-SIM technology on a pilot basis for only one year under strict observation.

The CA maintained that they had established that the overlay SIM card technology complies with minimum mandatory standards in manufacturing and no major complaints regarding the interception of communication on the main-SIM have been reported so far.

“The intention of the authority to license these operators is to encourage the innovation in the country’s information and communication sector that will spur competition in the various segments,” said CA’s board chairman Ben Gituku adding that, “if any vulnerability is discovered within this testing period its use will be revoked.

SAFARICOM PRESSES FOR GUIDELINES OVER SLIM SIMCARD TECHNOLOGY

safaricom-logo1Safaricom welcomed CA’s decision but urged the regulator to fast-track the security review over the thin SIM and publish the guidelines in the interest of protecting consumers and financial institutions.

“We are further encouraged by the CA’s commitment that in the event of any vulnerability during the testing period, it will take steps to suspend the use of the SIM overlay in the Kenyan market,” Safaricom’s director of corporate affairs Nzioka Waita said.

CONSUMERS COULD BENEFIT

Consumers stand to be the biggest winners following this verdict which experts believe will set the stage for a price war which is likely to see the cost of money transfer decreased.

Equity’s entry into Kenya’s mobile market could seriously threaten Safaricom’s dominant grip on the country’s mobile market considering that while Safaricom is the largest mobile network operator in Kenya with over 19 million M-Pesa users, Equity is the largest bank in East Africa with a customer base of over 8.7 million bank accounts and with over 50 per cent of all bank accounts in Kenya.

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