Thursday, August 14, 2014

Lorika Foundation, The Mother of Many

By Maison Nteetu

Many young children would like to join schools be it primary or secondary schools to ensure they cope with the current generation. However, it is not their faults or even their parents’ if they fail to do so. They sometimes lack finances to carter their school fees and other needs. Education is becoming expensive though it has also become a basic need.

Olorika Foundation came out as the source of hope for the needy society in the year 2005. It extended from Nguruman to many places including Shompole, Oloika, Olkiramatian and Oloserian. Mr. Bonde came up with the foundation after realizing the suffering and how needy the society is.
The foundation has sponsored the following in its mission of helping the needy.
·         Students’ school fees payment
·         Provision of teachers’ salary.
·         Provision of water drams and
·         Provision of library books for some schools.

Students’ school fees payment
The foundation sponsors a hundred and fifty secondary and primary students. Seventy two students are from Olkiramatian primary school while sixty five students are in Patterson Memorial Secondary school. The other thirteen are in different secondary schools.

Some of the students are partially sponsored while others are fully sponsored. This was arrived at after realizing that other students are from extreme poverty affected families while others are from poor but not extreme poor families.45 students in primary school are partially sponsored in primary schools while 27 are fully sponsored. In secondary school, 20 students are fully sponsored while 45 are partially sponsored.

Teachers’ Salaries

 Olorika foundation pays salaries for some primary school teachers. It pays 2 Olkiramatian primary school teachers, 3 from Entasopia and one from Pakaase primary school.
The foundation donated 100 library books to Patterson Secondary school. The foundation supplied 20 tanks to the community members. These helped in the environmental conservation.

Olorika foundation beneficiaries in a meeting
From 2012 however, there was a delay in payment of school fees. Mr. Bonde explained the situation and promised he should have not let them suffer if he was capable of controlling what he is undergoing.
Mr. Bonde is undergoing financial difficulties as his source of finances is affected by frequent attacks. He called the whole community to join him in prayers to help him out of the difficulties.

Mr. Bonde addressing the meeting
“I can’t promise for any help now as I am struggling to recover from losses caused by my assailants. I will be back to help you if God help me through.” Said Mr. Bonde. 

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Oil exploration in Olkiramatian faces opposition from the community members

By Maison Nteetu

The National Oil Corporation of Kenya (NOCK) sent explorers to Olkiramatian, Shompole, Olkeri and Oldonyonyokie to explore oil in the areas. The National Oil explorers set camps in the area and they have already started their research task.

Despite provision of job opportunities for the community members, the community calls for an end of the research due to many reasons.

The members accused the organization for starting their exploration without explaining the advantages and the disadvantages of the act. The organization should have conducted a civic education before their activities.
Members also claim that according some rumours, the residents were to be displaced 50 kilometres radius from plant. 

This annoyed them since the community claims that the land is becoming too little for them and their next generation.  They also claimed that they are in the boarder and any further relocation means they will lack places to move to.

The conservancy of the area also claims that the research is causing destruction of trees and grass which is the source of food for their livestock and wild animals which act as the main tourist attraction in the area. The noise produced by the machines has also caused migration of wild animals to other areas.

Area MCA Honorable Pariken addressing the meeting held in Laleenok by both the NOCK side and the members of the community. Photo by Maison
The NOCK side promised to give civic education. They also promised to give 4.2 million Kenyan Shillings as compensation for the four areas to divide among themselves.  

The community leaders however, insisted that the exploration should end since the disadvantages are more than advantages.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Community members bear bus rivalry brunt

Nguruman community members are furious about the operation of two buses plying Nguruman-magadi-kiserian route after the two operators failed to agree on operating hours. The buses have been chasing each other leaving the community members stranded as they are the only means of transport to Magadi. If anybody needs to travel, he/she has to be up at 1:30 am as there is no specified time when the bus will leave.

Intervention by the local administration failed to bear the fruits when they called the two bus operators and drafted a schedule of which the operators discarded and retained their normal schedule. Sometimes by 2:30 am, all the buses have left while in other occasions they even leave earlier.

“We feel annoyed by the conduct of the two bus operators and it our wish that they agree on specific time so we can be sure when to leave our homes to the bus stop”. Said Mr. Mburu, a resident. some people even spend the nights inside the buses to avoid the inconvenience and in fear of being left.

NCV calls upon the relevant authorities to take action and address the issue.

Monday, February 3, 2014

One hurt as insecurity rocks Nguruman

By Kelvin Koinet

In the past two days, insecurity has rocked Nguruman area where one person was shot by suspected gangsters on loose.

The suspects allegedly killed two people near Tanzania Kenyan border. The two had escaped from Tanzania and headed to Nguruman.  A brother of one of the deceased communicated from Tanzania and gave full information about the incident. As reported, the two; Noeli and Isaiya Simiyu robbed Gema village in Loliondo Tanzania and escaped towards Nguruman in Kenya through a road that leads to Shompole Market.

Tanzania Police accompanied by civilians were ambushed by the suspects as they tracked them where two were killed. This happened on Wednesday evening around 4:00 Pm the 29th Jan 2014 A day after the Shompole market day. On Friday the two suspects were identified by a guy who sought anonymity for security purposes, and reported to the Laleenok community Rangers, Nguruman AP post and the Administration chiefs. The search began and on Saturday morning the two were caught by the chief with the help of Laleenok rangers, the police and the residents.

On the other side, the government of Tanzania had communicated and asked to be given the 'criminals' from their country. Nguruman residents kept guard of the suspects until they were ensured by the police that they will not escape. At around 7.00 pm the suspects escaped police custody. The chase began again where one was caught at Congo forest where they agreed to meet with his partner. 

The other suspect had arrived earlier to the spot where they hid their gun, picked it and headed to the escarpment. As another search team followed him, he laid in wait and shot one resident in the right hand. He is still being searched but with fear as the Tanzania police said the suspects are trained in gun handling and are known to be sharp shooters.

NCV team will keep you posted on new developments.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Environmental Health day held successfully

By James Mathu

What started as normal training by Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) in collaboration with Fadhili trust on environmental issues bore the idea to hold Environmental health and safety day. The training was meant to encourage farmers within Nguruman irrigation scheme to take charge of their environment by cleaning their surrounding. A joint effort by MOA, Ministry of health (MOH), Fadhili Trust,IWUA and ALIN saw the environmental health day held on 25th October, 2013 a success.

 As per the plan, the day begun with destroying charcol kiln that were mounted illegally. Community rangers, MOA and the area chiefs were at the scene to supervise the whole process. every one at the scene wore a 'no nonsense' face sending a clear signal to the audience that, charcoal burning in Nguruman was not a permitted practice.

A commuity member opens up a charcoal kiln in presence
of community wardens and area chiefs. Photo by James Mathu
Charcoal kiln reduced to ashes as a lesson to other offenders
Other activities picked up as agreed with students from three primary schools armed with banners bearing different messages some of which read 'Usihatarishe soko yetu ya matunda kwa kuchafua mazingira' (Don't endanger our horticultural market by polluting the environment) where children chanted many slogans like 'chimba choo na utumie' (dig up a pit latrine and use it).

Students with different information materials photo by James Mathu
The voices of the small angles echoed even inside the woods as they went on to collect and destroy garbage around the shopping centre where shop owners and and the town residents also participated. The climax of the event went down when the area chief invaded the illicit brew dens and poured over 200 liters leaving the lovers of the drink saddened.

Different community groups entertained guests passing different messages to the participants. some of the messages included; logging as illegal act, polluting the rivers by bathing and washing in them and defecating near river courses messages which were echoed by the area chief while addressing the congregation. A stern warning was issued to the offenders and a legal action agreed upon an action that was welcomed by all community members present during the occasion.

The participants  chanted a slogan 'We have done it.. It should be repeated every month' to end the days ceremony.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Passing information through drama

Pepea community initiative group is a registered non profit group located in Nguruman area, Magadi division Kajiado west sub-county. It has set its objectives to salvaging the girl child and educating the whole community on issues of importance to their development. The group has its priorities on education, educating people on effects of early marriages, drug abuse, HIV & Aids and female genital Mutilation and alternative rite of passage. 

Pepea group members at a church function
The group passes its messages through organized drama sessions in churches, schools, public gatherings and private functions. The drama caries a certain theme depending on the occasion and though their intervention, they have reaches quite a large number of community members. After each play, the group engages its audience in an interactive sessions where questions and answers are shared regarding the theme and what the community member would like see next time.

"We have been able to engage the community during our drama shows and some of the issues have been addressed... we have received a lot of positive response from community members who want specific issues featured on the next shows.." Mr. Parantae, Group chairman.

Pepea group acting a play during a public gathering
The group has ability to bring more change, however they lack resources to enable them reach other community members, far and wide within the county who need the information and therefore is seeking support from well wishers to enable them accomplish their goal

Monday, July 29, 2013

Climate Change county level management committee formed

Four months ago, a zebra attacked and ate alive a young boy in Musenke location during the last dry spell in the area. Since then, there has been a number of incidences reported where zebra due to lack of pasture have attacked human beings. In the past when rains could be predicted, pastoralists used to allow their sheep to mate during the dry season between June and July so that the lambs will be born at the beginning of the short rains. Availability of pasture and water ensured survival of lambs; since rains became unpredictable and droughts became more severe, sheep are allowed to mate throughout.    Wild fruits and vegetables used to form part of the daily meals for the residents of Nguruman, nowadays most of these naturally occurring plants no longer exist.

These are some of the stories that came up on the 25th of July 2013 during a meeting that brought together state actors and CSOs to deliberate on the effects of climate change and come up with mitigation strategies that involved all stakeholders.
Provincial administration, the ministry of Agriculture and non state organizations working in three locations – Olkiramatian West, Olkiramatian East and Musenke - attended the meeting where they all agreed that climate change effects are crosscutting and touch on all the areas of their operation. Non state actors present included the organizers of the meeting Kenya Climate Change Working Group (KCCWG), Arid Lands Information Network (ALIN), South Rift Association of Land Owners (SORALO) and Oldonyo Laro limited.
State actors and SCOs representatives at the meeting

A committee made up of representatives from state and non state actors and headed by the Divisional officer was formed to deal with environmental degradation issues and create a joint worplan – from August to December – of activities and advocacy campaigns.
Top on the committees agenda is controlling illegal harvesting of trees by educating the public on the laws and policies governing harvesting of trees and ensuring that these laws are followed, banning unlicensed power saws, centralizing the issuance of permits to cut trees, creating a fast reaction mechanism in cases in dealing with offenders and banning charcoal trade.
According to meeting proceedings, Most of the charcoal produced in Nguruman is transported to other areas – residents of the three sub-locations use firewood which is easily available. Traders have started cunningly concealing charcoal in crates and bags made for agricultural products to evade impound at the Kenya Wildlife Service Nguruman station.

The new committee shall organize 2 open days where farmers and organizations will discuss and share information on climate change and participate in tree planting exercises.  In addition to this, the committee will hold 5 monthly barazzas, one in each sub-location to create awareness on the issue of climate change in order to involve the public in mitigation efforts.
Mr. Bainito Atonya, Division Agricultural Extension Officer
- Magadi Division - addresses an advocacy meeting.

 One such meeting was organized by the Ministry of Agriculture on 27th July 2013 at Entasopia market where farmers were briefed on the formation of the committee and its mandate.