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Showing posts from November, 2011

South Korea: Guest Post by Bitange Ndemo

This is the first guest post on this blog since I started blogging in June 2007. The post is by Dr. Bitange Ndemo, Kenya's Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Information and Communications.

Ndemo recently was on a visit to South Korea. He narrates his experience in South Korea, a country that was considered far less developed than Kenya in the 1960s and 1970s. At the moment, South Korea is a developed country and amongst the world's top 10 exporters. The country is also a top importer. This post was first published on the Kenya ICT Action Network (KICTANET) mailing list.

I arrived in Korea yesterday for a Global e-Government conference.  ITU
ranks Korea as number one in ICT diffusion.  From the airport you see
people walk through with an e-passport using biometrics.  The New Incheon
airport is 70 Kms west of Seoul, the capital and largest city of South
Korea with some 11 million inhabitants. It is one of the largest and
busiest airports in the world actually the world'…

Kenyan products: The art of punishing your consumer

Peanut butter used to taste so good, but you could not afford it on the pocket money that you got back in school. A few years later, you have your first real job and your first "disposable" income. You buy your first real tub of peanut butter , probably the first in your life. You feel proud that Dominion peanut butter is manufactured in Ruiru, a town that you visited in your campus days to withdraw your pocket money , it was the nearest bank ATM to your campus. This was before Equity bank became a mainstream bank and decided to open an ATM in your campus, and before M-Pesa meant that you could withdraw your pocket money next to the kibanda  where you had your one meal of the day.

The peanut butter though is a far cry form the peanut butter you remember. It does not taste that good, and turns into some sort of stone barely before you are a third way through the jar. The stone is not a kind that you learned about in your Geography classes though.

Dejectedly, you decide not …

Mutheu and the half-weave

She is a beautiful girl, that I shall not deny you the liberty of knowing. She is also slim, almost pencil thin, and tall, and  light. The time may be just ripe for her to hit the circuit, not that one, the modelling circuit. Her name was and still is Mutheu, though have not heard from her in months.

I would be lying to you if I told you that her mother had raised a family of girls, for that would be an understatement. A more accurate statement would be calling her a mother of models, for she would pride her homestead in having the highest number of beauties per family. The girls numbered about three or four , in a single parent family, with no brothers.

The family owned and ran a couple of popular salons, and she therefore grew up to be an expert in matters of the hair. This I had told you in another post, where I said that Mutheu was the only girl that knew how to look hot in weaves - those wig-like contraptions that Kenyan women have taken as a license to have pathetic hair days a…