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How Kenyans ushered in the New Year

Monday January 01 2018
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A city resident celebrates as fireworks light up the sky as residents ushered in the New Year at Uhuru Park on January 1, 2018. PHOTO | KANYIRI WAHITO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By NATION TEAM

Kenyans converged in churches and entertainment joints to usher in the New Year.

Fireworks and jubilant celebrations rent the air as people joined in the countdown to 12am in many parts of the country.

In Meru, Governor Kiraitu Murungi and other leaders joined residents and local artistes at a concert to usher in the New Year.

PEACE

Jesus Winner Ministry, Victors Chapel and Great Gospel Visioners (GGV) among other churches were full with clergy preaching messages of unity and peace.

In their New Year messages, a section of Meru leaders pledged to improve the lives of their electorate.

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Fireworks light up the sky in Nairobi as residents usher in the New Year on January 1, 2018. PHOTO | KANYIRI WAHITO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Governor Murungi promised to nurture local talent by hosting county festivals.

“Very soon I am going to organise a talent show for our youth because I have seen so much talent tonight. I want the youth to be empowered and they can derive an income from their talents,” he said.

Tigania East MP Josphat Gichunge said he was keen on ending rampant cattle rustling in the constituency.

North Imenti MP Rahim Dawood said he will use Constituency Development Funds to improve classrooms.

South Imenti MP Kathuri Murungi said he will be pushing for implementation of pending projects from the national government.

DIVINE

In Nyeri, Governor Mutahi Kahiga, in his New Year message declared he will seek divine intervention in his leadership.

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Residents usher in the New Year in song and dance at a concert at Kenyatta International Convention Centre on January 1, 2018. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Mr Kahiga noted that the county underwent a difficult time last year having lost two governors and called on the clergy to intercede on behalf of residents.

“Losing two governors in one year is not normal. We hope God will do great things for us this year. I believe God has given us a chance to repent our sins corruption and hatred” Mr Kahiga said.

He was speaking at Victors Chapel Church in Karatina town on Sunday night where he joined worshippers in ushering in the New Year.

Residents also thronged entertainment joints and hotels to usher in the New Year.

At White Rhino Hotel in Nyeri Town revellers were entertained with live band music from The Ark Band and gala dinner at the hotel. The climax of the event as the clock ticked to midnight

“It has been a very tough year for all of us. This was a good relief for those who attended and even to us,” said Ms Phoebe Ndung’u, the hotel manager.

In Narok County, the New Year was ushered in with song, dance and fireworks.

TOUGH YEAR

Kilgoris Business Owners Association Chairman Charles Kang’ethe said that traders welcomed the New Year with relief since 2017 was tough year for traders.

In Taita Taveta, leaders asked Kenyans to embrace peace, love and unity.

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Kesses MP Swarup Kiprop Mishra during prayers to usher in the New Year at Kenmosa in Eldoret town, Uasin Gishu County on January 1, 2018. PHOTO | JARED NYATAYA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

In their New Year messages, Governor Granton Samboja and Senator Jones Mwaruma asked Kenyans to put aside their political differences and unite for the sake of prosperity of the country.

“As we usher in New Year, it is my appeal for Kenyans to embrace peace and unite for the sake of our dear country,” Mr Samboja said in a speech read on his behalf by Executive Member in charge of Youth, Gender and Sports Bigvai Ouma.

Senator Mwaruma said leaders should focus on uniting Kenyans.

“There is need for leaders to join hands and work together regardless of their political affiliations,” he said

Tana River Governor Dhadho Godhana called on the government to address attacks by Al-Shabaab militants in the county.

“We have been experiencing attacks at Lango la Simba for many years,” he said.

BOOST SECURITY

The governor said the three counties of Tana River, Garissa and Lamu will form an alliance to boost security.

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Locals usher in the New year 2018 at Sarova Whitesands Beach Resort and Spa in Mombasa on January 1 2018. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Governors from western, Nyanza and South Rift regions led their constituents in ushering in the New Year with a promise to implement development projects in the regions.

The leaders together with their supporters thronged social joints and churches to usher in the New Year.

Migori Governor Okoth Obado asked residents to be more focused on wealth creation.

“My government will create a conducive environment for investments to create more job opportunities,” he said.

Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony led local leaders and residents of Kericho in a music extravaganza at Kericho Green stadium.

In his speech, Prof Chepkwony urged Kenyans to embrace peace and called on drivers to be careful on the roads to prevent crashes.

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Revellers dance as they usher in the New Year at Mariott Hotel in Eldoret town, Uasin Gishu County on January 1, 2018. PHOTO | JARED NYATAYA | NATION MEDIA GROUP

His Bomet counterpart Dr Joyce Laboso urged Kenyans to unite for the sake of development in the county.

Governor Anyang’ Nyong’o said while Kisumu was rated third in service delivery in the first 100 days, residents must not relent.

PRAY

“Our motto "TICH TIRE" must stay alive in every ear, reminding us that there is work to be done for the betterment of Kisumu in accordance with our Manifesto,” said Prof Nyong’o in his New Year message delivered from abroad.

At Nyamira Central Seventh Day Adventist, Nyamira Conference President Dr Thomas Nyakundi termed 2017 as a dark year.

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Kericho Governor Paul Chepkwony welcomes Tanzanian gospel singers Rose Muhando and Solomon Mkubwa to stage during New Year celebrations at Kericho Green Stadium on January 1, 2018. PHOTO | ANITA CHEPKOECH | NATION MEDIA GROUP

“We pray the bad things that happened in the past year do not follow us to the New Year. We also pray for peace in the country devoid of political uncertainty that claimed lives of many,” Dr Nyakundi said.

Faithful at Migori, Awendo, Uriri, Rongo, Nyatike, Isebania and Kehancha towns prayed for peace and stability in the country.

In Kakamega, the St Joseph's Catholic Church and the Christ church of the ACK Maseno North Diocese, faithful prayed for peace.

In Nairobi, residents ushered in the New Year at Uhuru Park while some attended a concert at Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC).

Fireworks lit the air as the clock struck midnight as those at Uhuru Park celebrated the New Year.

At the KICC, worshippers sang praise and worship songs as they celebrated the New Year.

Report by David Muchui, Nicholas Komu, Stephen Munyiri, Agnes Aboo, Joel Reiya, Brian Ocharo, Stephen Oduor, Rushdie Oudia, Anita Chepkoech, Benson Amadala, Nelcon Odhiambo, Henry Nyarora, Geoffrey Rono, Vivere Nandiemo, Elisha Otieno and Collins Omulo.

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