The Kenyan Middle Class

The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) recently announced that it would begin licensing cooking gas firms to operate piped gas systems in residential areas. This would mostly make business sense in gated communities and flats, where Kenya’s middle class tends to reside. This led me to think about our middle class. The middle class is the…

Kenya’s Perpetual Drought

We suffer from a range of disasters as a country: flooding, fire tragedies, terrorism, corruption, diseases and epidemics, and drought – these reduce our quality of life, destroy our infrastructure, disrupt our economy, and cause a diversion of resources intended for other things. They also ensure that we remain underdeveloped. Our country is particularly drought…

The Elephant in Kenya’s Room

We, the people of Kenya, claim to recognize the aspirations of all Kenyans for a government based on the essential values of human rights, equality, freedom, democracy, social justice and the rule of law. We also claim to promote the values that underlie an open and democratic society based on human dignity, equality, equity and…

The Best of Times, The Worst of Times

As the year ends, I am reminded of the highs and lows we have been through as Kenyans – two presidential elections (one which happened during the 2017 general election), an election annulment, an election boycott. a doctors’ strike, a nurses’ strike, the election of Kenya’s first women governors, the refusal of parliament to pass…

The Citizen vs The Taxpayer

Every election year, a sentiment arises that goes something like this: “Kenyans don’t know what’s good for them. They always vote for bad “leaders” who then proceed to loot and plunder our country. This is because many Kenyans don’t really have a stake in our economy because they don’t pay tax. They are not well…

The Election Boycott Of 2017

On October 10th 2017, Raila Odinga stated that he was withdrawing from the presidential election redo set for October 26th. He cited fears that it would be marred by the same irregularities and illegalities that got the August 8th election result annulled. In doing so, he seemed to grant Uhuru Kenyatta’s wish from the day…

Kenya’s Ban On Plastic Bags

After three previous unsuccessful attempts to ban the use, sale, manufacture and import of plastic bags in 2005, 2007 and 2011, we finally managed to do it on 28th August 2017 when the ban came into effect. It was gazetted by the Cabinet Secretary for Environment, Professor Judy Wakhungu, on 28th February 2017 and Kenyans…

Why Do You Pay Tax?

The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) deadline for filing individual tax returns came and went on the 30th of June 2017, and with it came much whingeing and wringing of hands by Kenyans, both online and on mainstream media. It was understandable, because this time, the penalty for non-compliance was KES 20,000, twenty times what it…

What We Learn From Building Collapses in Kenya

On the night of Monday, 12th June 2017, a seven storey building collapsed in Kware Pipeline in Embakasi. This building had been condemned by the National Construction Authority (NCA), and marked with an X on the outside to indicate this. The tenants in the building had been warned of its collapse, and most of them…

Kenya and Its Maize Scandals

Kenya may be in the middle of yet another maize scandal. How did we get here? We are still experiencing food inflation, and part of the reason for this is the drought we’ve had since 2016. We have a scarcity of sugar, and a 2kg packet is currently retailing for KES 400, up from KES…