Violence Erupts in Olympic, Kibera following IEBC Declaration

Sections of Kibera erupted with violence after the IEBC declaration of Uhuru Kenyatta as the winner of the controversial repeat Presidential elections that was boycotted by Opposition Coalition of Nasa which commands a large following from the area.

Youths from Olympic area in Kibera, who are die-hard followers of the main Opposition Leader Raila Odinga, started by lighting bonfires, and placing barricades on roads as a way to protest the move by IEBC,

The violence later turned into running battles with the police as the situation threatened to get out of hand. several shops went up in flames along Olympic road off Kibera Drive with the cause of the fire unclear.

Property worth of thousands of shillings was reduced to ashes in a matter of time with aa section of residents accusing the police of causing the fire and allegedly using excessive force to quell the protest.

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Repeat Election; How it was in Kibera

A day to the repeat presidential election, Kibera was on tension and most people did not know what to expect especially after the Opposition leader Raila Odinga who commands a large following in the area had called for election boycott.

Youths believed to be from Olympic, Gatwekera and Kianda, had, on the eve of the 26th presidential election repeat, taken it upon themselves to make sure no election materials were to be brought to Ayany, Olympic and KAG poling stations by barricading the roads that led to the polling stations.

with the fear of the expected confrontations, business were closed early and everyone made sure they got to the safety of their homes but the electoral body didn’t bring the materials on that day as was expected.

On the Morning of 26th, The Election day, a group of youths believed to be Opposition supporters, placed barricades at Olympic Primary School, Ayany Primary school and KAG, in an effort to stop any voting happening in Kibera by any means possible. but later the police came and running battles ensued leaving a number of residents with injuries from the almost whole day long confrontations with the police.

Voting however took place in some areas within Kibera, such as Kibera Primary school, Parts of Makina and Laini saba where it is believed that there’s a few Jubilee party supporters.

As they day unfolded, the protests turned into destruction of property and looting where by it is believed that protesting youths may have participated in vandalising Olympic Primary School, Raila Educational centre and the Equity Bank Kibera branch in Ayany.

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KNN Recruits New Members

Map Kibera’s video team Kibera News Network has recruited new members to ease their work in the community.
The new members are currently undergoing training on different citizen media techniques such as Camera work, field reporting news/video editing and blogging.

The team largely made up of young people from Kibera slums have so far shown the passion to learn more about reporting for their community, and participate in telling their own stories as opposed to mainstream and foreign media telling it for them.
So far a good number of them, together with the seasoned Kibera News Network Team, have participated in coverage of the 2017 general election monitoring in Kibera.
They have so far captured, to the least, all the basic requirements for a good citizen media reporter and the stories they have participated in have been impressive.
KNN looks to empower more young people from the community to be able to tell their stories from their own perspective.

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NASA’s First Visit to Kibera Since The Court Ruling

It was the first time since the supreme court ruling that Nasa coalition were having a their political campaign in Kibera’s famous Kamkunji ground.

The Nasa Presidential aspirant Raila Odinga was present accompanied by other Nasa leaders and Mps among them Kalonzo Musyoka, Musalia Mudavadi, Moses Wetangula and Kibra Mp Ken Okoth.

They used the time to critisize the President on what they termed as lack of respect for the constitution since the president was presiding over the official opening of 12th parliament, the leaders wondered why the 11th president was opening the 12th parliament ahead of the presidential elections scheduled for 17th of October.
The Nasa members of parliament had skipped the opening ceremony as a sign of protest and so used the opportunity to attend the campaign rally and together drum up support for their presidential candidate.
They also used the same opportunity to call on the Independent Election and Boundaries Commision CEO Ezra Chilloba to resign after accusing him of engaging in election mal-practises during the 8th August general election as they also threatened not to participate in 17th presidential election if the IEBC CEO refuse to resign.
Chants of ‘Chiloba must go’ could be heard all around as Kibera residents cheered on the Nasa leaders.

The leaders seemed to be calling on their Kibera supporters to join in on calling for the resignation of IEBC officials believed to have been tainted by the 8th August 2017.

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In a controversial campaign, Water Is Life, a US based non-profit entity, has stolen public art from Kibera by world-famous artist JR . They intend to raise money to be used to provide 5000 gallon per day water filter and a community hand washing station.

After reading the article about it and watching the video shared online. I went out to find if the residents knew anything about this and if they did, what they thought about it.

It wasn’t strange that many people didn’t know about it since the art was stolen anyway.

The first thing noticeable to a curious visitor are the missing pieces in some roofs within the area that the art covered, in Kisumu Ndogo village of Kibera. When I asked about the missing pieces, the residents blamed that on the wind, others said the missing pieces were removed due to the rotting iron roofs, to pave way for replacements, no one knew anything about Water is Life and any of the art being stolen.

One resident, who also happened to be a structure owner, actually thought that it would be good if the person who brought the art pieces can replace them with new ones because those ones had taken too long on the roofs and were probably contributing to rotting of iron roofs especially during the rainy season.

Showing The Video

When I showed them the article and the Youtube video of how the art have been stolen and is being auctioned off to raise money, they were mostly confused on what to say.

Water is Life is probably doing the right thing but not in the right way,” observed the structure owner I spoke to, “They should have been transparent about it, and should have shared what they are doing with us.” Why would they steal if they mean well, that’s what they asked. 

On Facebook Kibera’s MP had stronger words:

Screen Shot 2015-11-18 at 10.47.47 PM

Kibera MP Ken Okoth shares his frustrations on Facebook about the controversy

One woman who woke up one morning to find the piece of art on her rooftop gone, said that the piece had been helping to prevent rain water from coming inside her house. But she was actually grateful when, a few days later, a group of young men came with new iron sheets for her roof. She says that they never explained to her anything, just repaired her roof and went away with the rotten old iron sheets.

After my revelation to them, they are now expecting the said water projects from Water Is Life.

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Fire Sensor Pre-Mapping Training

Fire Sensor Pre-Mapping Training was conducted at the Boma Hotel Nairobi offices by Map Kibera Trust.
Day One kicked off with Introductions to the project and expectations from the participants, what they were looking forward to gain at the end of the training.
Their expectations included, Learning new things, Knowing more about the GPS gadgets, being empowered, meeting new people, learning, sharpening and sharing new skills.
The Attendance on day one was up to twenty mapping Volunteers.


Day two of the training, The Trainees were introduced to Open Street Map and JOSM. Of which they were taken through the editing features, data collection and the requirements of all these.
The attendance dropped on day two with seventeen trainees present.

Day Three of the training, the trainees reflected on their expectations, Most of them felt their expectations had been met.
They then did practical mapping of the Red Cross compound and the environs, on which they dived into 3 groups and mapped different areas in and around the red cross, in a way of putting into practice what they had learnt on day two.
Douglas From Map Kibera led them through reviewing what they had done in all the three days.

Evelyn, who is the management representative of the whole project did the closing remarks.

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Sarangombe Ward Security Meeting

The first public security meeting was held at Kamkunji grounds, Kibera. The meeting was organized by the office of the Sarangombe ward representative and the office of the Deputy County commissioner. However, the Deputy County Commissioner did not attend as he was attending to other duties elsewhere. Hence, in attendance were the Member of County Assembly for Sarangombe, Sarangombe area chief, the ward Police inspector and the local leaders.

Kotieno 1
The area member of County Assembly, Mr. Owino Kotieno, narrated how Sarangombe and Kibera in general has been afflicted with insecurity issues which he compared to a recurring skin infection that refuses to go away.
He also said, Contrary to what most people think, that insecurity is not always brought about by lack of employment, and even cited a few examples of people who are Jobless but are good members of the community.
He also stated that respect for human rights is like an hacksaw that cuts from both sides, so the respect for human rights apply in both situation as far as dealing with human rights is concerned.

The Inspector, in his part,told the residents that security starts with them, he also addressed the issue of girls dropping out of school.
He condemned the criminal activities in the area and warned youths engaging in crime that their time is up and the police is soon catching up with them. He also warned the public against taking law into their own hands and walking around with machetes.
The Sarangombe area Chief apologized on behalf of the Deputy County Commissioner who did not attend due to being caught up on duty elsewhere.

The chief said that the area administration, together with the MCA’s office is looking to have the meetings happen often to always address emerging issues as far as insecurity is concerned.
He went ahead to condemn playing loud music late into the night by saying that criminals use such places to plan their bad missions, and also school-going children don’t get time to study due the same loud music.

Stephene Oduor.

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NYS Protests; The Larger Picture

So much has been said and done, almost in each and every slum in Nairobi, with the sole purpose of preventing any violence that might occur, or re-occur in this context.

The civil society has come up with many different initiatives, over the years since the 2007/8 post-election violence, to help promote peace & togetherness within the ethnic communities that live in the informal settlements in Nairobi, Kenya

To some extent, this has worked and we cannot deny that. however, every small trigger of violence or protest always reminds us that there’s a little more homework to be done.

I do agree with you, that the last general election, 2012/13, was relatively peaceful in comparison to the 2007/8 elections. but it still wasn’t spared a protest, or two here and there.

And just a few days ago, after what was considered a peaceful march by those working with NYS (National Youth Service)-Driven slum upgrading projects to allegedly demand for an extension to the project which was expected to end this June, and will eventually come to an end in the long run.

protest 1 kibera(Photo by Joshua Owino)


there erupted a follow-up protest by youths from Kibera who felt that the NYS workers had wrongly accused the former area mp of meddling in their affairs, and even went ahead to burn a toilet built by the NYS.

toiletPhoto by Joshua Owino


Kibera News Network accompanied the marching NYS workers and from what could be gathered, it was clear that most of these workers didn’t even understand why they were marching, some had it that they were demanding for time extension to the project, yet some knew that they were protesting over what they termed as unnecessary interference by the former prime minister, who has in the recent past pointed out alleged corrupt practices at the ministry of devolution, or both. most of them were vague about it. but at the city centre, politics took centre stage with most of the workers chanting anti-Raila slogans, obviously leaving the vague workers showing there confusions openly.

It was funny when some workers interviewed during the match admitted that they are paid less and wanted the money increased, and time line extended.

nysprotest kibera (Photo by Joshua Owino)

My point is drawn from here, are protests, and more so violent protests, that include burning of property,  the effective way to put issues across? especially in informal settlements. if not, what are other channels that can be explored and how well we explore them.

Stephene ‘Steve Banner’ Oduor

Map Kibera

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Kibera Schools Map Distribution; My Experience

‘If you play your part, and you play it to your level best. Then your gift will surely open more doors for you’ observed one Fred Ogutu, Hope academy director.

We did play our part, if we played it well? That is debatable, and the answer might vary depending on which education partner or stakeholder you are speaking to. It may also depend on which phase of this education project you referring to.

If you read our earlier blog posts on the pre-project survey and collection of data during the previous phases, I believe you should have the answer on how those phases were done. To me, we did well. And more so now that we have the printed education maps and the website running.

With that said, I’m specifically here to talk about my experience in the current map distribution and website demonstration phase. And I’ll be very straight on this.
We started our distribution on the langata constituency part of Kibera, that is Raila village, note that we do have Kibra and Langata constituencies separately, and Kibera, which is the slum itself, expands to these two constituencies, with Kibra having the biggest portion.

All the schools in Raila village had a very positive approach to the map, and the site. They very much welcomed it despite the fact that some of them were a bit reluctant to give out information during the previous data collection.

Joy and excitement may have sent the Maono Secondary School head teacher the religious lecturer way, telling us that these are the end times and why everyone needs to repent and get ready to receive Christ when he comes. He did that for a few minutes then went ahead to tell us how the school will now use the Open Schools website as their official website.

At St. Stephen school, the head teacher even offered us a job, to help her draft the 2015 school activity plan that she intended to send to her donors together with a link to their page in the Open Schools Kenya website.

Hope Academy school director, Mr. Fred Ogutu, having featured in almost all our previous Project phases including the pre-project survey, was now well informed about what we are doing and congratulated us a lot on the good work done so far. He had a lengthy talk with us telling us that Kibera is a slum that has so much been misrepresented, with a lot of false data out there, he cited an example of the current Government-driven National Youth Service project which has, to use his own words, been blown out of proportion yet none of the clinics and toilets that the government seems to boast about are functional.

He observed that our data is one of the few genuine ones and wondered if the work we do also translate to helping us personally besides fighting to change our community. ‘Are you able to put food on the table and pay your rents?’ he posed a question.

In other villages, that is Katwekera, Kisumu Ndogo, Kambi Muru and Makina, the reception was equally good. We did manage to take fresh photos for FPFK Gatwekera school .

At Joseph Kangethe School, which is one of the two public schools that my colleague Zack and I were assigned to, had a very nice view of the map, The deputy head teacher asked us to come up with forums to educate parents in Kibera on the need to take their children to public schools. She said, contrary to what most parents expressed in the pre-survey, that public schools are being deserted and parents are flooding the non-government schools leaving the government schools with empty classes. “Public schools that had four streams per class have now reduced to three streams. We’ve been forced to turn the extra classrooms to stores because there are no children.”

She also added that learning in public schools is far much better than private schools where children are ‘just drilled and not taught’.

‘What is the government doing about that? And what are you as Map Kibera, in your education project doing about that?’ were her last questions.

Stephene ‘Steve Banner’ Oduor

Map Kibera Trust

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Is Storm Gathering Over Kibra?

Ethnic Intolerance is gradually strengthening its roots in Kenya, at most so after the 2007 post election violence that rocked the country, a recent debate on a Facebook group over slum evictions shows.

Although, many will agree with me that the tension had always been there even before the 2007 general elections, and whatever happened at that time only brought out the anger and bitterness that most Kenyans have all along held against each other, or one community against another in this case. Kibra, or Kibera as some might choose to call it, was not spared the ethnic-related violence of 2007. In fact, it was one of the worst hit regions. Even though another ethnic-related conflict had much earlier threatened to tear kibra apart, way back in 2002.

violence                                           {picture:}

We saw so many peace initiatives come up after that with the aim, goal or mission of bringing Kibra residents together. There have been so many of these peace initiatives linked to Kibra, or Kibera that everytime the word ‘Peace’ is mentioned, people expect to see an image of kibera somewhere along the lines. Whether these peace initiatives achieved their goals, missions or whatever they hoped to achieve is a question for another day.


Parliamentary Election Debate Kibera

But sadly it looks like something was never addressed. These peace groups or initiatives might have overlooked or bypassed something important, a root cause of all these unrest, call it a grudge that has been held for so long but never settled, historical injustices or whatever you want. But another storm seems to be gathering, all the signs are there, loud and clear. It’s either these peace initiatives will have to go back and do their homework well or new mechanisms will have to be put in place before the gathering storm finally comes down, after which everyone will once again be asking when, or where the rain started beating us.

Like my friend would say, something needs to be done, and not tomorrow but now. Before what we are currently seeing on social media trickles down to the streets.

It only takes a statement, opinion, concern, argument or whatever anyone might call it, in form of a facebook, twitter or any other social media post to ignite the hatred that most of us hold in their hearts, the ethnic-related anger or bitterness that came as a result of whatever injustices happened in the past and never addressed.

Here is a good example of a concern I had and shared on Facebook in relation to the ongoing sewer-line evictions in Kibera and some of the comments that came afterwards..

This was my post:
“Honest opinion, was this NYS projects, or whatever you call them, mean’t to render more Kibera residents homeless? How can they give 3 day notice them exepect residents to find new homes.. then they bring down the houses leaving many women and children to sleep in the cold? they may not respect the structures they see but they are houses to us, it’s where we call home.. evict us after giving us somewhere to go… ‪#‎FeelingPissedOffWithNYS‬”

Mohammed Hassan Juma hamtaki kutoka kwa sewer line?ndo maana wazungu wanakuja kibra kuwacheka. (you don’t want to move from the sewer line? that’s why white people come to kibra to laugh at you)
January 13 at 5:27pm • Like • 3

Fatuma Abdulrahman Surur its a reality some think they r a superior being!anyway everybody dies in kibra but only we r burried in kibra kwa hivo bado tupotupo! (….. so we are still here here)
January 14 at 1:05pm • Like

Imma Jeeb @Fatuma, i like that, of course hawajatoka Mbinguni. Wana Makwao.don ‘t they know the meaning of Devolution?tiz high time we have a better KIBRA.!! (… of course they didn’t come from heaven. they have have thier homes…)
January 14 at 1:18pm • Like • 1

George Ambunya hatespeech ndio mob tu hapa sana (this place is only full of hatespeech)
January 14 at 1:56pm • Like • 3

Siyama Ismail #George_Ambunya,
This is a #Healthy_Debate na hakuna hates speech, it is called #Expressions.
January 14 at 3:07pm • Edited • Like • 1

Owino Kotieno #Hussein Umri wangu hauni ruhusu kutoa matamshi au fikra za Chuki ama Kulenga Jamii. Ikiwa kila mtu ataulizwa Kwao ………Looo. Changia kwa upole,fanya utafiti na ujiusishe na mapambano ya fikra kisha tusemezane. (My age doesn’t allow me to give out hatefull utterances or thoughts, or target a communitty. if everyone was to be asked where he comes from….looo. contribute peacefully, do your investigations and be part of the mind struggle then we can talk)
January 14 at 5:40pm • Like • 2

Daniel Orogo Hussen am shocked that while others are in sobber debate to find a solutions to this problem, you bring another twist thats sounds non objective. Kibera is home to all those who are curently residing there
January 14 at 5:40pm • Like • 2

Stam Kaindi Kibra/ Kibera call it what you like but it is in Kenya and for kenyans!!
January 14 at 6:42pm • Like • 4

Iahtallization Kiberallion Chupakabrah Kiberallization if our actions dont mirror words that come from our mouth simply means we are hypocrites
January 14 at 8:07pm • Like • 5

This, and numerous other examples both in and out of the social media circles, only goes to prove my point on the need to address the outstanding root cause of all the hatred, or bitterness, that most, if not all, of us hold in their hearts.

I do agree with you that this is a national problem, and coming up ways to solve it might be described as a national dilemma, but me and you, with the help of him or her, can work towards addressing the point that may have all along been overlooked by all other peace initiatives here in Kibra.

Stephene ‘Steve Banner’ Oduor,

Kibera News Network

Posted in Kibera, Land, Opinion, Peace, People | Leave a comment