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The Road to Kenya 2017

Time to start blogging again. Let us  pray for a peaceful and democratic elections in Kenya 2017.

Stephen Kariuki MP Elect Mathare By Elections 11 August 2014

Stephen Kariuki of the Orange Democractic Movement (ODM) and a Masters in International Relations graduate of the University of Tennesee. USA is the provisional winner of the Mathare By Elections in Nairobi County held on 11 August 2014.  He defeated the former member of parliament George Wanjohi of  TNA (The National Alliance). Stephen Kariuki represents a new generation of young and articulate members of parliament in Kenya. He believes in “Transformative Leadership, ”  and a “Just equitable and progressive society.”  The Orange Democractic Movement  (ODM) has learnt from its experiences of March 2013. During the 2013 Kenya General Elections ODM fielded candidates of parties affiliated to the coalition in the same constituencies. This split the votes and a TNA victory. Stephen Kariuki is not the first person  in his family to become a Kenyan MP. His mother Bishop Margaret Wanjiru was an MP for Starehe  in Nariobi County.

Stephen Kariuki’s Mathare consituency has one of the biggest slums in Kenya. Challenges are plenty. Poverty, crime and lack of resources that should be available to all citizens of Kenya. If  Stephen Kariuki delivers what his constituents’s wants and needs – he could upset the status quo in Kenya. Appealing to people of different ethnic and social groups, expecially the young, who will have a greater say in the Kenya 2017 Elections. Mathare is changing, but will it change with Stephen Kariuki?


What is in a name? Stephen Kariuki is also known as Steven Kariuki. Steven Kariuki is the name frequently used by the IEBC. if researching Hon S Kariuki use both forms of forenames.

Orange Democractic Party (ODM) is part of the Coalition of Reforms and Democracy (CORD).

The National Alliance (TNA) is part of the Jubilee Alliance – Kenya’s ruling coalition.

Makhan Singh Kenya Trade Unionist

By Makhan Singh Study Group 21 July 2014

Born: Gurjanwala, near Lahore (then Colonial India) 27 December 1913 – Died Aga Khan Hospital, Nairobi 16 May 1973 (Other sources state he died on 18 May 1973)

One of the founders of trade unionism in Kenya. Freedom fighter for Kenya‘s independence from colonial rule. One of the longest serving pre-independence detainee. Staunch communist and Marxist.

Believed in socialist ideals.

Makhan Singh Centennial Celebrations

27 December 2013 marked 100 years since Makhan Singh was born and forty years since he died.  Makhan Singh is seen as one of Kenya’s forgotten heroes and his legacy continues to this day. Kenya is not a Marxist or socialist state. In fact one could say it is the opposite, “… a man eat man society” (A Tanzanian description of Kenyans by the Tanzanian Government controlled Media).  What young  Kenyans are discovering is  Makhan Singh’s passion for social justice and democracy in Kenya which is touching people beyond his own idealology and race. Many describe Makhan Singh as the Father of the Trade Union Movement in Kenya. Fred Olouch wrote a moving tribute in the Daily Nation, Nairobi entitled ‘Makhan Singh: The Nelson Mandela of Kenya’  July 8, 2013


There are plays, readings and events marking the birth and life of Makhan Singh celebrated throughout the world taking place in 2014.

Recommended viewing is Hilary Ng’weno ‘s Makers of a Nation video on Makhan Singh available via Kenya Histories and Biographies Co. Ltd and leading retailers in Nairobi.

Zarina Patel’s book – Unquiet: The life and Times of Mahkan Singh available on Amazon and other retailers.

Study Group Questions:

Where (Hospital) and when did Makhan Singh Die?

Why did the then Colonial Government see Makhan Singh as a great threat? If not one of the greatest threat in Colonial Kenya.

Why did Jomo kenyatta’s post independent Kenya Government ignore Makhan Singh and his contributions in challenging and changing the rights of workers in Kenya?

Did Makhan Singh have any links with Tanzania which was (and still is?) a socialist oriented state?

Why and when  did Tanzania call Kenya a ” … a man eat man society.”

Useful Resources and Reference:

Ng’weno Hilary (2007) ‘Makhan Singh: Makers of a Nation,’ Nairobi, Kenya Histories & Biographies

Kenya Histories & Biographies

P.O. Box 10519 – 00100Nairobi, Kenya Wabera Street Prudential Assurance Building,5th Flr. Wing B –

Email: info(at)

Zarina Patel – African Books Collective, where you can find more information on books published by Zarina Patel. – Fred Olouch ‘Makhan Singh: The Nelson Mandela of Kenya.’ courtesy of Daily Nation, July, 8 2013

The Protector’s Choice – An Application of Protection Theory to Somali Piracy Shortland A and Varese F (2014)

The article published online in the British Journal of Criminology provides some intriguing fresh insights concerning Somali Maritime Piracy, criminality and legalised trade relationship with local clans and communities.

The research paper asks the question -“What explains the variation in piracy along the coasts of Somalia?” The authors Anja Shortland and Federico Varese answer this question by drawing upon Protection Theory and a new data set of piracy incidents. The literature spans several disciplines and suggests analytical links between the behaviour of states and that of criminal groups.

We recommend you read the following related articles highlighting this publication:

BBC Africa article ‘Somali Piracy: Roads Better than Warships.’ 10 July 2014

The Economist 12 July 2014 ‘Pirates v economists: A new weapon against Somali bandits: free trade.’


Anja Shortland is a Reader in Political Economy and Director of Postgraduate Research in the Department of Political Economy, King’s College London

Federico Varese is an Author and Professor in Criminology at Oxford University

Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of the Centre for Crime and Justice Studies


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