THE CUTTING EDGE

NEW SOURCE OF TROUBLE. The Kazi Mtaani initiative to hire youth for community cleaning jobs in a national hygiene programme during the Covid-19 pandemic is a great idea, says Stephen Masambu. It has not only provided something for idlers in towns and rural areas to do, but is also a godsend to the many who have lost jobs. However, Stephen is worried that it could become the new source of trouble. “The young people operate without observing social distance and only a few wear face masks. I’ve also seen an element of moral decadence. I hope it does not become an avenue for old people to steal money meant for youth, as has happened in the past.” His contact is [email protected]

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CRUCIAL TEACHER. Teachers deserve not just praise but also better remuneration for their magnificent job of shaping future generations, says Lodrine Olocho. To him, the prolonged school holiday due to the pandemic, which has seen thousands of schoolgirls impregnated and increased drug abuse, confirms the vital role teachers play. “Parents and guardians have been exposed as unable to look after their children properly. Such cases are few when schools are on, thanks to teachers curbing the unwarranted behaviour. Even in the day schools, such cases are few.” His contact is [email protected]

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NHIF HOSPITALS. Desperate times call for desperate measures, and this is precisely why Willis O. Aguko feels the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) should relax the rule requiring members to seek treatment only in the hospitals assigned to their cadre. Since the Covid-19 health crisis emerged in mid-March, he notes, many people have lost their jobs and left towns to seek refuge in the rural areas. “Most of them had been assigned hospitals in towns. College and university students who had been going to hospitals in the towns have also gone to their rural homes. The NHIF should revise the list of hospitals where they can seek treatment,” pleads Willis, whose contact is [email protected]

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JUSTICE DELAYED.... The best proof of favouritism in the justice system that Thomas Yebei can think of is the apparent ease with which activist Okiya Omtatah’s court cases are expeditiously heard and determined. “Omtatah seems to always have the right of way in the corridors of justice. He automatically gets hearing dates, his matters are treated with urgency and expedited and, in most cases, he gets judgments in his favour.” He concludes: “Can the Judiciary explain why some cases, especially those of ordinary folks take years to be concluded?” His contact is [email protected]

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BAR RISK. As outrage mounted over Nairobi Senator Johnson Sakaja’s flouting of Covid-19 pandemic rules, for which he later apologised and was fined Sh15,000, Job Otieno, writing from Lang’ata Estate, has wonders why new bars and other outlets for alcoholic drinks are being allowed to operate in the neighbourhood. A new wines and spirits shop on Kitengela Road, he reports, has been operating just like a bar and is proving to be a nightmare for the residents, who fear the spreading of the deadly virus by the revellers. “Who approved this outlet during this Covid-19 pandemic?” asks Job, who hopes the authorities will quickly close it down.

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MACABRE BURIALS. As the Health ministry preaches the message about not stigmatising patients who recover from Covid-19, Dave Tumbula says the gains are immediately reversed by the dramatically scaring burials of victims. “Nothing can create more stigma than the fellows in white suits, who appear to enjoy performing the cleansing ritual after keeping bereaved families away from the dead. The burials at night or early in the morning remind me of the days when Aids victims were hurriedly buried in sealed plastics. Safety is paramount, but can’t the macabre showbiz of the five or so people be dispensed with and the graves just fumigated?”

Have an irreproachable day, won’t you!


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