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Kenya’s Trending Topics on April 16, 2018

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Kenyans on Monday predicted that the three Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) commissioners who resigned would be back in government positions in no time.

In a sarcastic twist to their resignation, a number of commentators argued that Vice Chairperson Nkatha Maina, Amb. Dr Paul Kurgat and Margaret Mwachanya had staged the resignation.

They further castigated the commissioners as the alleged moles for Deputy President William Ruto.

Here are some of the posts that were shared on the topics “IEBC“, “DP Ruto” and “Connie Nkatha Maina“.

A number of commentators also took issue with Ms Mwachanya’s difficulty in expressing herself in English, questioning her qualifications as a commissioner.

The three commissioners cited poor leadership from Chairman Wafula Chebukati as their primary reason for leaving the commission.

The Chairman, however, released a statement moments after the three announced their resignation outlining that he only learnt of the action through media reports and that no official communication had been relayed to him.

Here are more comments that were shared.

Kenneth Matiba

Veteran politician Kenneth Matiba trended on Monday following his death at the Karen Hospital on Sunday evening.

Condolence messages were shared by top leaders and ordinary citizens alike as they celebrated the democracy advocate as a patriot.

The topic also emerged among Google’s trending topics in Kenya for the day with over 50,000 searches.

Here are some of the posts that were shared.

President Uhuru Kenyatta

President Uhuru Kenyatta trended on Monday as he left the country to attend the Commonwealth Summit meeting in London.

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Here are some of the posts that were shared.





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Woman kidnapped in Mombasa found alive in Nairobi

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The 20-year-old pregnant woman who went missing on Thursday has been found alive in Nairobi.

Saida Abdulrahman is said to have been rescued in Nairobi’s Majengo slum.

The Eight months pregnant Saida  was supposed to board a matatu from Mombasa to Malindi where she was to take a flight to Lamu on Thursday evening.

According to Family Doctor Suleiman Hussein, Saida is currently at the Radiant hospital in Pangani undergoing examination.

He said at the point she was rescued, though she could not speak, she was walking but bleeding.

“Doctors have confirmed she is stable and out of danger but she has to undergo a scan to ascertain the cause of the bleeding,” he said.

The abductors reportedly sent text messages to Saida’s husband Mohamed Abdulrahman using their hostage’s phone saying she had bled to death

“They even took photos of her lying on the floor in a wrapper but we believe that she was still alive by the time they took that photo,” Akirima said.

The phone signal was last traced to Gulshan area, less than three kilometres from Saida’s home in Mvita.

Read: Pregnant woman, 20, goes missing in Mombasa. family suspects kidnapping

“The police, however, told us the call was made from Sawe in Mtito Andei. They then later told us the phone had been traced to Nairobi,” Akirima said.

He said Saida had received a call from their mother, who is in Lamu, at around 11am asking her to hurry up so she could receive her at the Manda Airstrip.

“Our sister then boarded a Tuk tuk to Buxton where she was to take a matatu to Malindi. At around 1.30pm, my mum called her again but her phone was off,” Akirima said.

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Earlier on Saida’s mother Khadija Bwanaomar had pleaded with the police to secure the lass’ release from the hands of kidnappers.

She said her health has deteriorated since Saida Abdulrahman, 20, went missing on Thursday.

“I have not eaten or slept since then. Please, have mercy on me. I am diabetic and this situation is killing me,” Khadija pleaded.

See: Mother of pregnant woman kidnapped in Mombasa appeals for her rescue

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21 injured as clashes erupt afresh at Olpusimoru in Narok

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By NATION TEAM
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Clashes have erupted afresh at Olpusimoru on the border of Nakuru-Narok counties.

Nakuru County Police Commander Hassan Barua said security officers have been deployed to the area.

“Yes, l am aware that the clashes erupted this [Sunday] evening,” he said.

The latest clashes come in the wake of a similar flare-up in Nakuru between two communities that left at least six people dead and several nursing arrow injuries.

Four victims with arrows lodged on their bodies have been admitted to Tenwek Mission Hospital in Bomet County.

“The patients have been wheeled into the theatre for emergency operations to remove the arrows in their bodies,” said a doctor at the hospital who is not authorised to speak to the press.

Three of the men were referred from Olenguruone Sub County Hospital while the fourth was brought directly from the scene of the clashes by relatives and well wishers according to a source at the facility.

“They came in a succession of ten minutes, and doctors who had day off are on standby in the event the number of victims rises at night,” the doctor said.

The fighting between the two communities is said to have been triggered by a cattle rustling incident.

“Members of one community went after the stolen stock but were repulsed leading to an intense fighting in the evening,” said Mr Alfred Sang, an elder from the affected area.

A source said security teams were taken by surprise by the attack that has seen more than 10 homes set ablaze at Olmariko and Esoit in Narok North.

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The clashes according to former Olpusimoru ward representative Wilson Ole Masikonte were triggered after seven cows were stolen in Olmariko.

Reporting by Eric Matara, John Njoroge, Vitalis Kimutai and George Sayagie.

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Iran’s Rouhani fumes at US after Ahvaz parade attack

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Iranian President Hassan Rouhani has fiercely criticised the US following a deadly attack on a military parade.

Gunmen opened fire at Revolutionary Guard troops in the south-western city of Ahvaz on Saturday, in an attack claimed by both an anti-government Arab group, and Islamic State militants.

Mr Rouhani said the “bully” US and the Gulf states it backed had enabled the attack.

The US has denied this and says it condemns “any terrorist attack”.

Mr Rouhani will face Donald Trump at the UN General Assembly this week.

Saturday’s attack killed 25 people, including 12 soldiers, civilians watching the parade, and a four-year-old girl.

Ahvaz National Resistance, an umbrella group that claims to defend the rights of the Arab minority in Iran’s Khuzestan Province, said the group was behind the bloodshed, while IS also claimed the attack.

Neither group provided evidence to show it was involved.

Speaking on Sunday, before leaving for the UN in New York, Mr Rouhani vowed that Iran would “not let this crime stand”.

“It is absolutely clear to us who committed this crime… and whom they are linked to,” he said.

He alleged that a Gulf country had supported the “financial, weaponry and political needs” of the attackers.

He added: “The small puppet countries in the region are backed by America, and the US is provoking them and giving them the necessary capabilities.”

“The US showed the world their bullying nature and they keep continuing their unilateral policies.”

However, US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley countered: “He [Rouhani] has oppressed his people for a long time and he needs to look at his own base to figure out where that’s coming from.”

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“The United States condemns any terrorist attack anywhere,” she told CNN, but added: “He can blame us all he wants. The thing he’s got to do is look at the mirror.”

Image copyright AFP Image caption The gunmen shot at civilians and soldiers

Mr Rouhani did not specify which “puppet” countries he was referring to – but his comments are widely thought to be directed at Iran’s regional foe Saudi Arabia, and the UAE and Bahrain.

On Sunday, Iran’s foreign ministry summoned a UAE envoy in protest at “biased statements” made in support of the attack.

An adviser to the UAE crown prince had tweeted that “attacking a military target is not a terrorist act” and “moving the battle deeper inside in Iran is a declared option”.

Why does Iran blame its Gulf neighbours for the attack?

Iran has previously alleged that Saudi Arabia supports separatist activity among Iran’s Arab minority.

Both countries have been struggling for regional political and religious dominance for decades, and are engaged in a number of proxy wars around the region, backing rival factions in Yemen and Syria.

Image copyright Getty Images Image caption Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman (L) and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani

The decades-old feud between them is exacerbated by religious differences – Iran is largely Shia Muslim, while Saudi Arabia sees itself as the leading Sunni Muslim power.

The UAE and Bahrain are closely allied with Saudi Arabia.

Iran has also alleged that the gunmen had links to its bitter foe Israel.

Iran considers Israel an illegitimate occupier of Muslim land – and has accused it of attempting to undermine the government.

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Iran also summoned diplomats from the UK, the Netherlands, and Denmark on Saturday, accusing their countries of harbouring Iranian opposition groups.

And why are US-Iran relations so tense?

The two sides have had thorny relations for decades.

The US has accused Iran of running a clandestine nuclear weapons programme, which Iran denies.

In 2015, under then-president Barack Obama, the US and Iran reached a landmark nuclear deal – also signed by China, Russia, the UK, France and Germany – where Iran limited its nuclear activities in exchange for sanctions relief.

However, ties deteriorated after Mr Trump took office and then withdrew from the nuclear deal.

Since then, the US has brought sanctions back into place, despite opposition from EU partners, China and Russia, and warned that anyone trading with Iran would also be punished.

The US has also expressed support for anti-government protesters in Iran.

More generally, the US is deeply suspicious of Iranian activity in the Middle East – including its influence in Syria and Yemen – and is an ally of Israel and Saudi Arabia.

Mr Trump is chairing a UN Security Council meeting on Wednesday – and says the meeting will be focused on Iran.



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