Wild About Africa

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Never fly 540.com – possibly Kenyas worst airline

I and a group of Kenyans and tourists have been sitting at Mombasa airport for nearly 2 hours due to the incompetence of the fly 540.com manager and his staff at Mombasa airport.

Fly 540.com should be closed down

I have written a complaint letter and hope that the airline will respond and punish the entire crew for the damage that they are doing to their business.

Feel free to share the letter and whatever you do, think twice about flying on fly540.com which seems to be an airline in a state of slow collapse as witness by almost losing tehir aircraft in an auctioned due to non payment of a debt of 157 million shillings. Who the hell runs this business?  No wonder they are saving pennies on ground transport.

We thought this was a new Kenya – this airline should reconsider whether it deserves to be in the market.

As @ColdTusker says , I should have flown KQ!

3. September 2010
Mombasa airport

Dear Sir/Madam,

I write to complain about the absolutely incompetent service that I and several other passengers have had to endure at Mombasa due to your airline.
After the aircraft was unable to land in Malindi the pilot announced that we were going to Nairobi. However about 40minutes into the 55 minute flight, he changed his mind and told us he was going to Mombasa.
We were informed that alternative transport would be available to Malindi on arrival in Mombasa. Ho

wever, we have now been sitting in Mombasa for nearly 2 hours and your manager, Morris Olunya insists that a vehicle is on it’s way. It takes only 2 hours to get to Malindi and we are still sitting in Mombasa. The ground crew here have been exceptionally poor at communicating and it is clear that the vehicle that is supposed to be coming to pick us up, is still at least one hour out of Mombasa being near Vipingo. The airline will not consider providing us with alternative transport.
I cannot tell you how furious and disappointed all the passengers are at the behavior of your airline and staff. Even your pilot Emmanuel seemed embarrassed and ashamed of the treatment that the passengers were getting because for the first 45 minutes none of the ground crew were able to reach the Manager Mr. Olunya.
We have been on the road since about 1 pm having arrived at Nairobi airport at 2 pm for a 3.30 pm flight. Even that flight was delayed to 4 pm. It is now 8.30 pm and  after we missed all our meetings and business for today in Malindi we requested that 540.com provide us with a drink and something to eat. After quite an argument Mr. Olunya finally conceded – it is unbelievable.
I would like to know what you will do to compensate us and all the other passengers for this horrendous service and waste of time. I for one hope never to have the  travel on your useless airline ever again.

Paula Kahumbu

September 3, 2010 Posted by | Flying | , , , , , , , , , , , | 14 Comments

The history of Kenya as told by the former colonialists

According to the BBC, this is a chronology of key events that shaped Kenya:

You’ll notice that they conveniently forget that the Chinese were in Kenya from the 15th Century…

They also don’t mention that over 14,000 Kenyans died during Mau Mau – and less than 100 whites

Kenya first president

Kenya’s first president Jomo Kenyatta (his name means the light of KEnya) wore endangered species skins and carried an ivory walking stick). Like Presidents Moi and Kibaki after him, he showed little concern for the environment and wildlife and left a legacy of destruction. His own direct relatives engaged in the ivory and rhino horn trade leading to the collapse of Kenyas herds. Frankly the British didn’t do much good either – they started the whole concept of killing animals and destroying our forests.   Grrrrr…..

Interestingly the post election violence that rocked Kenya in 2007 elections saw 1,500 killed, vs less well reported 2000 who are reported to have been killed in 1992 elections.

Bombing of the Norfolk Hotel in 1980 is not mentioned

Listen to one of Kenyattas most famous speeches here

BBC version of events

Evidence of some of the earliest human settlements has been found in Kenya, suggesting that it was the cradle of humanity from which descendents moved out to populate the world.

Maasai women
Maasai women: Once-nomadic tribes are turning to crop farming

600 – Arabs begin settling coastal areas, over the centuries developing trading stations which facilitated contact with the Arab world, Persia and India.

16th century – Portuguese try to establish foothold on Kenyan coast but are driven off by Swahili states and Omani Arabs by late 17th century.

1830s – Omani Arabs consolidate control of coast.

1895 – Formation of British East African Protectorate.

Early 1900s – White settlers move into highlands, railway built from Mombasa to Lake Victoria.

1920 – East African Protectorate becomes crown colony of Kenya – administered by a British governor.

Mau Mau

1944 – Kenyan African Union (KAU) formed to campaign for African independence. First African appointment to legislative council.

1947 – Jomo Kenyatta becomes KAU leader.

1952 – Secret Kikuyu guerrilla group known as Mau Mau begins violent campaign against white settlers. State of emergency declared. Kenyatta arrested.

1953 – Kenyatta charged with management of Mau Mau and jailed. KAU banned.

1956 – Mau Mau rebellion put down after thousands killed – mainly Africans.

1959 – Kenyatta released from jail but under house arrest.

1960 – State of emergency ends. Britain announces plans to prepare Kenya for majority African rule. Kenya African national Union (Kanu) formed by Tom Mboya and Oginga Odinga.


1961 – Kenyatta freed and assumes presidency of Kanu.

Kenyatta was Kenya's founding father
Independence activist, jailed by the British, became president

1963 – Kenya gains independence, with Kenyatta as prime minister.

1964 – Republic of Kenya formed. Kenyatta becomes president and Odinga vice-president.

1966 – Odinga, a Luo, leaves Kanu after ideological split, forms rival Kenya People’s Union (KPU).

1969 – Assassination of government minister Tom Mboya sparks ethnic unrest. KPU banned and Odinga arrested. Kanu only party to contest elections.

1974 – Kenyatta re-elected.

Moi era begins

1978 – Kenyatta dies in office, succeeded by Vice-President Daniel arap Moi.

1982 June – Kenya officially declared a one-party state by National Assembly.

1982 August – Army suppresses air force coup attempt. Private Hezekiah Ochuka rules for about six hours.

1987 – Opposition groups suppressed. International criticism of political arrests and human rights abuses.

1989 – Political prisoners freed.

1990 – Death of the foreign minister, Robert Ouko, in suspicious circumstances leads to increased dissent against government.

Multi-party elections

1991 August – Forum for the Restoration of Democracy (Ford) formed by six opposition leaders, including Oginga Odinga. Party outlawed and members arrested. Creditors suspend aid to Kenya amid fierce international condemnation.

Daniel arap Moi (1991 picture)
Daniel arap Moi, one of Africa’s “Big Men”

1991 December – Special conference of Kanu agrees to introduce a multi-party political system.

1992 – Approximately 2,000 people killed in tribal conflict in the west of the country.

1992 August – Ford splits into two factions – Ford-Asili (led by ex-government minister Kenneth Matiba) and Ford-Kenya (led by Odinga).

1992 December – Moi re-elected in multi-party elections. Kanu wins strong majority.

1994 – Odinga dies. Opposition groups form coalition – the United National Democratic Alliance – but it is plagued by disagreements.

1995 – New opposition party – Safina – launched by palaeontologist Richard Leakey. Party refused official registration until November 1997.

1997 – Demonstrations calling for democratic reform. World Bank withholds disbursement of $5bn in structural adjustment credit.

1997 December – Moi wins further term in widely-criticised elections. His main opponents are former vice-president Mwai Kibaki and Raila Odinga, son of Oginga Odinga.

Embassy bomb

Kenyans were the main victims of the 1998 US embassy bomb
1998 attack on US embassy in Nairobi killed 224, injured 4,500

1998 August – Bomb explodes at US embassy in Nairobi, killing 224 people and injuring thousands.

1999 – Moi appoints Richard Leakey to head government drive against corruption.

2001 April – Leakey appears in court to face charges of abuse of power and perverting the course of justice.

2001 June – Parliament passes a law allowing the import and manufacture of cheap copies of anti-Aids drugs.

2001 – Ethnic tensions culminate in several violent clashes. In December thousands flee and several people are killed in rent battles involving Nubian and Luo communities in Nairobi’s Kibera slum district.

2002 July – Some 200 Maasai and Samburu tribespeople accept more than $7m in compensation from the British Ministry of Defence. The tribespeople had been bereaved or maimed by British Army explosives left on their land over the last 50 years.

2002 November – 10 Kenyans, three Israelis are killed when an Israeli-owned hotel near Mombasa is blown up by a car bomb. A simultaneous rocket attack on an Israeli airliner fails. A statement – purportedly from al-Qaeda – claims responsibility.

Kibaki victory

2002 December – Opposition presidential candidate Mwai Kibaki wins a landslide victory over Kanu rival Uhuru Kenyatta, ending Daniel arap Moi’s 24-year rule and Kanu’s four decades in power.

Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki
Moi’s successor, Mwai Kibaki, promised to tackle corruption

2003 January – Government bill proposes anti-corruption commission. Moi critic John Githongo appointed anti-graft czar.

2003 November – International Monetary Fund (IMF) resumes lending after three-year gap, citing anti-corruption measures.

2003 December – Government decides to grant former president Daniel arap Moi immunity from prosecution on corruption charges.

2004 March-July – Long-awaited draft of new constitution completed. Document requires parliament’s approval and proposes curbing president’s powers and creating post of prime minister. But deadline for enactment is missed.

2004 July-August – Food crisis, caused by crop failures and drought, dubbed “national disaster” by President Kibaki. UN launches aid appeal for vulnerable rural Kenyans.

2004 October – Kenyan ecologist Wangari Maathai wins the Nobel Peace Prize.

Controversy over jail conditions amid intense media coverage of inmate deaths at Meru jail in the east.

Ecologist and Nobel Peace Proze winner Wangari Maathai
Ecologist was first African woman to win Nobel Peace Prize

2005 January – Clashes over land and water rights leave more than 40 people dead.

2005 February – Corruption takes centre stage when it is claimed that graft has cost Kenya $1bn under Kibaki. Leading anti-graft official John Githongo resigns. International donors voice unease.

2005 July – Raiders kill 76 villagers, most of them women and children, in the north-east. The massacre is blamed on a rival clan.

Parliament approves a draft constitution after days of violent protests in Nairobi over aspects of the draft which demonstrators say give too much power to in the president’s hands.

Constitution spurned

2005 November-December – Voters reject a proposed new constitution in what is seen as a protest against President Kibaki. The president replaces his cabinet; some nominees reject their appointments.

2006 January – Government says four million people in the north need food aid because of a drought which the president calls a “national disaster”.

2006 January-February – Government ministers are linked to a corruption scandal involving contracts for a phantom company. One of them, Finance Minister David Mwiraria, resigns and says allegations against him are false.

2006 March – Armed police, acting on government orders, raid the offices and presses of the Standard group, one of Kenya’s leading media companies.

2006 April – Three days of national mourning are declared after an aircraft carrying several prominent politicians crashes in the north.

2006 April – Visiting Chinese President Hu Jintao signs a contract allowing China to prospect for oil off the Kenyan coast. His African tour has focused on trying to satisfy China’s hunger for energy and raw materials.

Somali refugees

2006 October – UN says some 35,000 Somalis escaping drought, Islamist rule and looming conflict have arrived in Kenyan camps since early 2006.

Kenyan family flees street violence
Hundreds were killed in unrest that followed the disputed 2007 polls

2006 November – December – Regional flooding renders thousands homeless. Some 100,000 Somali refugees cut off by floodwaters in the north-east are supplied by air drops.

2007 May – A Kenya Airways plane with 114 people on board crashes in Cameroon.

2007 December – Presidential elections. President Kibaki claims victory and a second term in office, prompting a wave of unrest. Opposition says polls were rigged.

Opposition Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) wins most seats in the parliamentary election.

Post-election clashes

2008 January – Post-election violence kills more than 1,500, including an MP.

2008 February – Former UN chief Koffi Annan brokers talks between President Kibaki and opposition leader Raila Odinga, which lead to signing of a power-sharing deal.

2008 April – Mr Kibaki and Mr Odinga agree cabinet list. The 40-member cabinet is Kenya’s largest and costliest ever.

2008 October – Report into post-election clashes calls for international tribunal to try those implicated in violence. Many political leaders are reluctant to implement the commission of inquiry’s recommendations, with some arguing that prosecutions could trigger further clashes between communities.

2008 December – Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (KACC) accuses seven current and former MPs of taking illegal allowances worth $250,000.

2009 July – Kenya’s cabinet announces that it will not set up a special tribunal over last year’s post-election violence, and will use local courts instead.

2009 August – Visiting US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton criticises Kenya for failing to investigate the deadly violence after the 2007 election.

Kenya says that at least 10 million people, or one third of the population, are in need of food aid. The government mobilises the military to distribute food, water and medicines to areas hit hardest by drought.

2009 November – Kenya publishes a draft constitution which would cut the president’s powers and put the prime minister in charge of routine government business, fo

January 28, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment