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Garissa is located at 0°27′25″S 39°39′30″E. The Tana River, which
rises in Mount Kenya East of Nyeri, flows through the Garissa.
Most of Garissa's inhabitants are ethnic Somali. These are further
sub-divided into clans, with the Ogaden sub-clan of the Somali Darod
especially well represented.
There are also a small number of other minority ethnic groups,
commonly referred to as corner tribes.
Livestock production is a significant part of the town's economy.
Garissa has a hot semi-arid climate (Köppen climate classification
BSh). Garissa's landscape is mostly arid, desert terrain. The city
lies along the Tana River, and has a very warm/hot climate due to the
low elevation and distance from cooler coastal areas. The daytime
temperature typically rises above 33 °C (91 °F) every day, but cools
down every night (see chart below).
No new model of jet has recorded two fatal accidents in its first year, until the @Boeing 737 MAX-8 #EthiopianAirlines @flyethiopian @thedailybeast
Law & Politics
There is no case in the recent history of commercial aviation where
within the first year of introducing a new model jet there have been
two serious fatal accidents involving that model. But that is now the
record of the Boeing 737 MAX-8, the newest version of the most widely
used single-aisle jet in the world.
The crash of Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 shortly after taking off
from Addis Ababa occurred little more than four months after the crash
of Lion Air Flight 610 in Indonesia. A total of 346 people died in the
two crashes, 157 in Ethiopia and 189 in Indonesia.
The most pressing question for investigators is whether the Ethiopian
pilots confronted the same sudden emergency that doomed the Lion Air
Within a few minutes of takeoff the Lion Air pilots encountered a
problem that made it difficult to control the climb. Due to a faulty
instrument, the 737’s automatic flight controls system detected an
aerodynamic stall and forced down the airplane’s nose to correct it.
In fact, the jet was nowhere near to stall speed and for the rest of
what was only an 11-minute flight the pilots struggled to overcome the
automated commands that continued to force down the nose. They lost
that struggle and the jet nosedived into the Java Sea.
“At the heart of the concerns about the MAX-8 is a change in the
automatic flight controls.”
The Ethiopian 737 was in the air for far less time, around six
minutes. But in that time the captain, like the Lion Air captain,
reported difficulties and requested a return to the airport.
Unlike the Lion Air flight there is no evidence that the Ethiopian
crew was able to maintain altitude and begin to make a turn back
toward the runway – the jet’s end was very sudden and it appears to
have impacted the ground at high speed.
At the heart of the concerns about the MAX-8 is a change in the
automatic flight controls. Boeing is facing a lawsuit on behalf of the
family of a victim of the Lion Air crash that focuses on changes made
to the flight controls in a few lines of new software.
The change, called Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System,
MCAS, initiates the nose-down command without input from the pilots.
The introduction of this system was not included in the flight manuals
issued to pilots nor was it included in the training given to pilots
who transferred to the MAX-8 series from earlier model 737s.
@realDonaldTrump adviser @AmbJohnBolton warns of @Huawei's 'Manchurian' chips @smh
Law & Politics
Los Angeles: US President Donald Trump's national security adviser,
John Bolton, says China's attempts to use think tanks and non-profit
organisations to influence opinion in the US and Australia "is far
greater in magnitude than any other foreign effort we have seen in
Bolton also offered blunt assessments on China's island and military
base building in the South China Sea and raised concerns "Manchurian"
chips in Huawei technology could be activated for espionage.
Bolton, in a US TV interview on Sunday, said China's efforts to
influence opinion in America via Confucius Centres and other ways
trumped Russia's election hacking.
"It really is far greater in magnitude than any other foreign effort
we have seen in history to influence American opinion and it's not
just confined to the United States," Mr Bolton told Fox News' Maria
"They are doing it in Australia and other countries - close friends of ours.
"So this really goes to the core of how you maintain a free and open
society in this country when other countries are trying to influence
it the way that China has.
"It goes well beyond just election hacking although we certainly have
been concerned about China doing that as well."
Bolton, known for his hawkish views, became President Trump's national
adviser after the departure of retired US Army general HR McMaster in
April last year.
Bolton backed concerns raised by the US, Australia and other countries
about using Huawei technology for national security-related
"I think for very, very good reasons," he said.
"People sometimes call the concern the Manchurian chip problem - that
if something gets into the telecommunications system that can be
activated down the road.
"This is a very serious threat."
Trump is expected to reveal his 2020 budget proposal to congress on
Monday and Bolton said handling the existential threat posed by China
"has been a focus of much of the preparation of the budget requests".
He said China, through island building in the South China Sea, was in
effect attempting to create a new Chinese province.
"It is taking over these rocks and shoals and islands and building
military bases on them," Bolton said.
"It is completely unacceptable.
"That is why we have continued to do freedom of navigation exercises
and look at other ways to stop this effort in effect to create a new
10-DEC-2018 :: Truce dinner @Huawei
Law & Politics
Presidents Trump and Xi Jinping enjoyed a ‘’truce’’ dinner at the G20
in Buenos Aires, where dinner Guests broke out into spontaneous
applause thereafter. At the same moment, Canadian authorities were
making the arrest of Wanzhou Meng, chief financial officer of Huawei
Technologies at the request of US Authorities. The US is seeking
extradition of Wan- zhou Meng after convincing Canada to arrest her.
she was in custody shortly after the Globe and Mail reported she had
been arrested in connection with violating sanctions against Iran.
Meng is the daughter of the founder of Huawei, a national champion in
Bloomberg said ‘’While the US routinely asks allies to extradite drug
lords, arms dealers and other criminals, arresting a major Chinese
executive like this is rare -- if not unprecedented’’.
15-OCT-2018 :: War is coming @TheStarKenya
Law & Politics
The US military is reportedly planning to send US warships, combat
aircraft, and troops through the South China Sea, Taiwan Strait, and
other contested waterways next month in a series of exercises designed
to send a message to Bei- jing in November. The incident with the USS
Decatur where a Chinese warship came within 45 yards of the USS
Decatur in South China Sea is surely a precursor.
Canada will face "grave consequences" if it does not immediately
release Meng Wanzhou. Xinhua: (Ch.) 严重后果 (Eng.) grave consequences
Law & Politics
Much of Venezuela remains plunged in darkness with little to
connection to rest of the country, let alone the outside world. – at
Plaza La Castellana (Plaza Isabel La Católica)
Venezuela enters fourth day of blackout as Maduro blames U.S. for power outage
Law & Politics
Venezuelans woke up to a fourth day of an unprecedented nationwide
blackout on Sunday, leaving residents concerned about the impacts of
the lack of electricity on the South American country’s health,
communications and transport systems.
Socialist President Nicolas Maduro - who is facing a challenge to his
rule by the leader of the opposition-led congress, Juan Guaido - has
blamed the blackout on an act of “sabotage” by the United States at
the Guri hydroelectric dam, but experts say it is the outcome of years
U.S. Airstrikes Kill Hundreds in Somalia as Shadowy Conflict Ramps Up @nytimes
And so far this year, the intensity is on a pace to eclipse the 2018
record. During January and February, the United States Africa Command
reported killing 225 people in 24 strikes in Somalia. Double-digit
death tolls are becoming routine, including a bloody five-day stretch
in late February in which the military disclosed that it had killed
35, 20 and 26 people in three separate attacks.
“People need to pay attention to the fact that there is this massive
war going on,” said Brittany Brown, who worked on Somalia policy at
the National Security Council in the Obama and Trump administrations
and is now the chief of staff of the International Crisis Group, a
nonprofit organization focused on deadly conflicts.
The war in Somalia appears to be “on autopilot,” she added, and one
that is drawing the United States significantly deeper into an armed
conflict without much public debate.
The United States estimates that the Shabab has about 5,000 to 7,000
fighters in Somalia, but the group’s ranks are fluid. A State
Department official, citing interviews from Shabab deserters, said
that the number of hard-core ideologues may be as few as 500.
“We were geared up for counterterrorism efforts in Somalia, and now
there are more resources to do it, so we’re doing more of it,”
suggested Stephen Schwartz, who served as the United States ambassador
to Somalia from 2016 to 2017, although he cautioned that he had no
current insider knowledge.
“It could be there is some well-thought-out strategy behind all of
this,” Mr. Schwartz added, “but I really doubt it.”
“We go after the network when the network presents itself, whether a
single node or a concentration,” he said. “We’ve developed
intelligence and are sussing out the relationship between the
leadership and those being led; between those being led and those
being trained or recruited or massed for an attack.”
“We understand the network better than we have in years past,” General
What is sub-Saharan Africa? @TheEconomist
NINE THOUSAND years ago the Sahara desert was a grassland, inhabited
by hunters who made rock paintings of hippos and giraffes. For a
millennium before the 16th century a flourishing trade carried salt,
gold and slaves across the dunes, until Moroccan invasions and
Atlantic shipping drove it into decline. Yet today the Sahara is more
often seen as a barrier, cutting Africa in two. Academics,
policymakers and newspapers—including The Economist—routinely refer to
part of the continent as “sub-Saharan Africa”. International
institutions such as the World Bank and IMF are internally organised
along the same lines. It seems Africa is defined by a wall of sand.
But what is “sub-Saharan Africa”?
The answer might seem obvious. Anywhere south of the desert is,
geographically, “sub-Saharan”. The first problem is that some
countries, like Mauritania, are mostly in the desert itself. And the
confusion runs deeper. Consider Somalia and Djibouti, both in the Horn
of Africa. They are south of the Sahara, but the IMF oversees them
from its Middle East and Central Asia department. The World Bank used
to include both countries in sub-Saharan Africa, before moving
Djibouti to the Middle East and North Africa in 2000. Meanwhile
Eritrea, to the north of both of them, is considered sub-Saharan. And
whereas the World Bank includes the Arabic-speaking states of
Mauritania and Sudan in sub-Saharan Africa, the IMF does not.
Clearly, “sub-Saharan Africa” is not just about physical geography,
but has a cultural element too. Outsiders have often regarded the
region with a mixture of ignorance, fantasy and racism. “Geographers
in Afric-Maps, with Savage-Pictures fill their Gaps,” scoffed Jonathan
Swift. Arab writers referred to the region south of the Sahara as
bilad al-sudan, or “land of the blacks”. The term was used to describe
a larger area than modern-day Sudan, stretching roughly from Senegal
to Ethiopia. Some 18th-century British mapmakers simply translated it
as “Negroland”. Colonial administrators favoured the phrase “tropical
Africa” for everything between the Sahara and the Limpopo river. In
the 1970s the term “black Africa” became popular among scholars,
including some in Africa. It was only in the 1980s that the phrase
“sub-Saharan Africa” gained purchase, though it began circulating
earlier (The Economist first used it in 1938). All of these concepts
were entangled with notions of race, language and the level of
economic development. In some cases this has been painfully obvious.
In the 1960s and 1970s, the World Bank lumped white-ruled,
apartheid-era South Africa together with the Middle East and North
Africa. In the late 1990s, when the country was governed by a black
majority government, and was once more receiving World Bank loans, it
appeared in the sub-Saharan category.
Many in Africa reject regional labels altogether. African-led
institutions, such as the African Union (AU) and the African
Development Bank, encompass the whole continent, up to the Red Sea.
They stand in a tradition stretching back to the 1960s, when
pan-Africanism was at its peak. Ali Mazrui, a Kenyan intellectual,
later wrote about “Afrabia”, arguing that Africa and the Arab world
“are in the slow historic process of becoming one”. Some
pan-Africanists cast the net still wider, to include the black
"Morts lentes ou morts brusques, nombreuses seront les victimes de
'notre' politique. Les trônes africains n'ont-ils pas toujours et
encore toujours besoin de sang pour mieux briller?" Bernard Dadié H/T
[DEUIL] , pionnier de la littérature ivoirienne s'en est allé à
l'âge de 103 ans @LifeMagazine_CI
As a child growing up in Harare, I believed there was a Whitney
Houston song that went: ‘Oh! I wanna dance in Zimbabwe, wanna feel the
heat in Zimbabwe.’ It seemed entirely reasonable: Zimbabwe was, and
remains, more beautiful, more richly green and blue and growing, than
any other country I know. It’s a country in which grace is written
into its daily greeting:
‘Maswera sei?’ ‘Are you well?’
‘Taswera maswerawo.’ ‘I’m well only if you’re well.’
‘Taswera.’ ‘I’m well.’
I was back in Harare, visiting my grandmother, when the riots began.
My grandmother is in her nineties, and lives in a cluster of cottages
in a northern suburb which used, once, to be one of the smartest in
Harare. It’s now so rundown that the roads, unlit by streetlamps, are
booby-trapped with potholes deep enough to bury a mid-sized treasure
chest, but still African tulip trees bloom by the roadside. The other
inhabitants of the cottages are, like my grandmother, white, un-rich
and quite spectacularly old, and, unlike my grandmother, liable to
refer to themselves as ‘Rhodesian’. The complex has a garden
surrounded by a rusty electric gate, but, unlike many such complexes,
no guard, because we are so far from any possible happening. This
diary is not an account from the heart of the action: it’s an account
of how possible it is to be sure of nothing but rumours, as brutality
goes on only miles away; of how life goes on, against the backdrop of
Zimbabwe’s currency is a fairground ride: but the kind of unhinged
fairground ride that kills people. In 2008, inflation reached 79.6
billion per cent. I still have a few trillion dollars in a drawer
somewhere. For several years, the country operated on US dollars;
then, in 2016, the government started introducing bond notes into the
marketplace. Bond dollars are not, technically, a currency; rather,
they’re ‘legal tender quasi-money’ (how often is quasi-anything a good
sign?) officially pegged to the US dollar. The problem is
‘officially’: one bond dollar is officially equal to one US dollar but
the actual black-market rate is around 3.6 to 1, and may have changed
by the time this goes to press. In October, for a single week,
inflation rocketed and people with bond cash rushed to spend it before
it became worthless: there were runs on alcohol in the supermarkets,
and shoppers were limited to a single can of beer per brand per
person. My mother went to buy a TV for $900 bond; she said she would
come back that afternoon with someone to help her carry it: by which
time it was $1500. Then the currency settled at around 3-1, leaving
many people with cupboards full of breathtakingly expensive beer.
Menus are printed without prices, to avoid the need to print them
again in a week’s time.
My grandmother, one hour and 14 minutes into 2001: A Space Odyssey:
‘Has it started yet?’ This seems to me a cogent piece of criticism.
There is, too, a petrol crisis. Petrol itself is very cheap – the
equivalent of £0.97 a litre: the difficulty is that there isn’t any.
The government argues that this is because people are hoarding and
smuggling fuel, about which Zimbabwean Twitter, which traffics largely
in good jokes and good music, is incredulous and ironic. It’s widely
known that a small number of people with good connections are making a
vast profit from importing petrol. Getting a licence to import means
you can buy US dollars from the reserve bank at the official 1-1 rate.
The trick is very simple: you buy enough US dollars to import, for
instance, two tankers of petrol; and then you either buy only one, and
make a solid threefold profit on your leftover US dollars, or you buy
two tankers and sell the other for a profit across the border in
Mozambique. So petrol, and where to find it, becomes a central subject
of conversation, in the same way Brexit is in the UK: all
conversational roads lead to the service station.
Every morning I sit outside in the shade, watching the purple-crested
turacos and working on a laptop, and occasionally bellowing small talk
at the inhabitants of the complex. My grandmother notes in passing,
not unkindly but with the interest of a medical practitioner, that I
have unusually fat arms for a thinnish person. As old age has given
her a tendency to repeat herself, she notes this in passing a few
dozen times. It has at least the advantage of being true
On 12 January, we wake to find that the government has tripled the
cost of petrol. Kombis are forced to raise the price of a journey to
$10 bond, which means that for many commuters, including many nurses
and teachers, going to work means a net loss. This is the final spark.
Inside the complex, there is a long-planned 95th birthday party. There
are doubts about safety for the people coming from out of town, but we
are so far from the centre of Harare, which is the only place that is
burning, that they decide to go ahead. A small group gathers, with a
combined age of roughly a thousand years. An eighty-something-year-old
man brings out his guitar, and everyone sings: as they sing, they sway
towards each other, and their hearing aids clash and buzz with
feedback. They sing ‘Daisy, Daisy’ and ‘Waltzing Matilda’: not
everyone is singing the same verse or even the same song at the same
time, but everyone is singing.
In retaliation to the planned stayaway, the government shuts down the
internet across the country. It takes me some time to realise: I blame
my computer, and spend half an hour optimistically plugging and
unplugging cables into the router, because I foolishly didn’t imagine
that Mnangagwa would take such an open and unambiguous leaf from the
dictator playbook. But then Econet, the country’s primary internet
provider, sends out an erratically punctuated text to all its
Further to a warrant issued by the Minister of State in the
President¿s Office for National Security through the Director General
of the President¿s Dept, acting in terms of the Interception of
Communications Act, Internet Services are currently suspended across
all networks and Internet Services Providers.We are obliged to act
when directed to do so and the matter is beyond our control. All
inconveniences are sincerely regretted.
Another friend of a friend was visiting family in Budiriro, a
high-density suburb south-west of Harare, when he was seized by
soldiers and made to crawl on all fours along the road while being
beaten. He’s the finance director of a small company: not a
subversive, not known to the army personally, just a guy in the
Zimbabwe doesn’t need to be poor; that’s what’s so devastating. It has
copious minerals, well-managed water resources, an educated and
ambitious population, a safari park the size of Belgium, and some of
the most beautiful landscapes in the world. It’s poor in part because
of theft on a grand scale: Zimbabwe is being looted by its own
government. Small numbers of elite Zimbabweans feel entitled to
wealth, and the only way for them to get as rich as they feel they
should be is to plunder the parastatals and the public purse.
Uncertainty about the current regime and how long it will survive
makes for extreme myopia; people are making golden hay while they can.
Zimbabwe’s fiscal deficit is around 12 per cent of GDP; you can’t run
a deficit that size without stealing from the future. (For comparison,
in 2017 the UK’s deficit was 1.8 per cent.) As my economist father
says, ‘the temporal discount rate is anomalously high.’
A guard minding the cars at the supermarket car park stops to talk.
The situation is, he acknowledges, bad. But, he says, it’s different
this time. ‘Little by little, they are making us courageous.’
Rwanda aims to sell stake in cement firm @CIMERWAPPC this month @ReutersAfrica
Rwanda’s government aims to put its 49 percent stake in the country’s
biggest cement maker, Cimerwa, up for sale this month, the prime
minister said on Saturday.
The company, which is 51 percent owned by South Africa’s PPC Ltd, has
an installed annual production capacity of 600,000 tonnes.
“We have asked our partners if they are interested and the timeline is
one month,” Edouard Ngirente told a meeting of senior officials
broadcast on national television. “By the end of this month we will
auction (the stake).”
He said PPC had yet to specify if it was interested in the stake,
which he gave no valuation for, adding that other buyers would be
sought if necessary.
A construction boom in Rwanda has driven up demand for cement as the
government builds roads, power plants and a new international airport.
Private developers have also been building new houses and office
@Barclays_Kenya ‏reports FY 2018 EPS +7.031% Earnings #BBKResults2018
Par Value: 2/-
Closing Price: 11.60
Total Shares Issued: 5431536000.00
Market Capitalization: 63,005,817,600
Barclays Bank of Kenya FY 2018 results through 31st December 2018 vs.
31st December 2017
FY Kenya Government Securities 63.230224b vs. 58.476028b +8.130%
FY Loans and advances to customers (net) 177.353969b vs. 168.397417b +5.319%
FY Total assets 324.839666b vs. 271.177377b +19.789%
FY Customers’ deposits 207.407834b vs. 185.977380b +11.523%
FY Loans and advances to customers interest income 21.527991b vs.
FY Government securities interest income 7.382300b vs. 5.775128b +27.829%
FY Total Interest income 29.061293b vs. 27.171214b +6.956%
FY Customer deposits expenses [6.126393b] vs. [4.834902b] +26.712%
FY Net Interest income 21.992411b vs. 21.801422b +0.876%
FY Fees and commissions income on loans and advances 1.052491b vs.
FY Other fees and commissions 4.573316b vs. 4.636524b -1.363%
FY FX trading income 3.279548b vs. 2.863594b +14.526%
FY Total non-interest income 9.702070b vs. 8.457129b +14.721%
FY Total operating income 31.694481b vs. 30.258551b +4.746%
FY Loan loss provision [3.870757b] vs. [3.115113b] +24.257%
FY Staff costs [9.768076b] vs. [10.113604b] -3.416%
FY Total operating expenses [21.048750b] vs. [19.897572b] +5.786%
FY Profit before tax and exceptional items 10.645731b vs. 10.360979b +2.748%
FY Profit after tax and exceptional items 7.416042b vs. 6.926319b +7.070%
EPS 1.37 vs. 1.28 +7.031%
Dividend per share 1.10 vs. 1.00 +10.000%
Net NPL and advances 4.280497b vs. 3.787981b +13.002%
04-MAR-2019 :: Meanwhile the Kenya Shilling crossed the psychologically important 100.00 mark last week
Meanwhile the Kenya Shilling crossed the psychologically important
100.00 mark last week. We underestimate the regional safe haven status
of the currency and I have noticed that these downside moves in the
Tanzanian Shilling are being mirrored by the strengthening of the
Kenya Shilling. The GOK appears to be inclining towards heavier
issuance in the Kenya Shilling with a tax Free Infrastructure Bond
slated for sale. If this is the thinking, then I expect the Shilling
to strengthen further as Kenya taps offshore funds. The Charts signal
a move as far as 92.00 but that might be too bold.
28-JAN-2019 :: A move below a 100.00 would catch a lot of people off-guard.
Every January every year every forecast about the shilling predicts a
10%-15% devaluation. Its mind boggling. The key levers with regard to
the shilling are the price of fuel [We have to write a cheque every
month], inward Remittances [flew off the chart last year and its not
clear to me if that bump will turn out to be ‘’amnesty’’ affected] and
I think we underestimate the regional ‘’safe-haven’’ status that the
Kenya Shilling has earned. A move below a 100.00 would catch a lot of
06-NOV-2018 :: The Shilling. @TheStarKenya
The Central Bank is sitting on the highest hard currency reserves in
its history. Remittances have surged by 71.9% year on year to $266.2M
in June 2018 from $54.9M in June 2017. Remittances are the most
important source of forex bar none. Our single biggest expense Item is
of course Crude Oil and you will have noted that since the Istanbul
incident, the crown prince has been finessing the price lower to
release some of the pressure in what remains a pressure cooker.