Chinese Company Employing Kenyans, Uhuru Pointman's Irreducible Minimums for Gachagua


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Lukewarm Economy

As the economy continues to batter the middle and lower class, a glimmer of hope arises as a Chinese company opens its doors signaling that it may not be all gloom for the working class.

Since mid-last year, the number of companies closing their doors due to the high cost of living had hit chokeful levels leaving massive firings in their wake.

Yesterday, however, Sinoma, a Chinese Roofing Company, opened its doors for business in Machakos.

Sinoma General Manager Wu Shuang confirmed that the company is set to employ at least 50 locals, a number expected to expand to 200 employees.

What Shuang is Saying: "Kenya and China share a deep bond of friendship. We are committed to providing affordable, quality materials that will meet the needs of the Kenyan people."

Machakos Governor Wavinya Ndeti hailed the company's new technology as a game-changer. "We are happy that the technology being used will change how roofing is done, and that the factory will give an opportunity to young people to come and learn how this technology works."

Sinoma Roofing Company opens its doors in Machakos County
Sinoma Roofing Company opens its doors in Machakos County.
Wavinya Ndeti

Contrasting Times: Separately, the Private Security Regulatory Authority (PSRA) vowed to deregister private security firms that failed to comply with its requirements of paying security guards a minimum salary of Ksh30,000.

The companies were expected to comply by June 18. The sector employs 1.3 million people.

Catch Up Quick: Several investors are threatening to shut down businesses and ditch the country decrying high taxes in the proposed Finance Bill 2024.

In February this year, we reported that 4 multinationals winded up their operations leaving hundreds without jobs.

  • GlaxoSmithKline announced that it was scaling down its operation after a 60-year run over increased taxes and the then weakening shilling. The company embarked on a direct distribution model.
  • Bayer, a biotechnology company headquartered in Germany, also announced that it was winding up its operations and the move will affect a section of its 200 employees.
  • Procter and Gamble, a multinational that manufactures home products, announced that it will be exiting the Kenyan market in 2024 impacting 30 employees.
  • An Australian Mining Company operating in Kwale since 2013 embarked on the process of shutting down its large-scale mining operations to be concluded by 2024. The decision was expected to impact 800 employees.

Bleak Future: 243 CEOs who participated in a Central Bank of Kenya Survey announced that they were planning to fire a section of their employees before year-end.

The Chief Executives decried the harsh economic times expected to worsen once the Finance Bill 2024 takes effect next month.

They explained that the planned layoffs were necessary as they tightened their belts with the manufacturing industry being the most affected.

"Key concerns for firms in the services sector include the business environment, increased taxation, and the economic environment (high cost of borrowing)," the CBK report read in part.

"In addition to the concerns raised by firms in the services sectors, manufacturing sector firms were also concerned about subdued consumer demand and constraints to business financing."

Gachagua Can Be Forgiven, There is a But

After weeks of Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua's crusade attempting to woo former President Uhuru Kenyatta, his allies now say that he can be forgiven but after meeting irreducible minimums.

Jubilee Party Secretary General Jeremiah Kioni noted that leaders seeking to regain favour with the former Head of State should reject the Finance Bill 2024.

He also made it clear that Gachagua should stop engineering conflict within the former ruling party for its management to believe his friendship crusade.

What Kioni is Saying: "If you really want us to believe that you are apologising, release his Jubilee Party. What are you doing at the party? If they ignore Kenyans and pass the Finance Bill, we will move around the country from Friday."

"We will go to Nakuru to discuss many of the issues we discussed in Limuru, but also to address the issues of the Finance Bill. From there, we will be in every county," he added.

He further disclosed that leaders Kanini Kega and Sabine Chege had awakened their forgiveness tour seeking an alliance with the former President.

Former Ndaragwa MP Jeremiah Kioni speaking in Siaya County on October 15, 2023.
Former Ndaragwa MP Jeremiah Kioni speaking in Siaya County on October 15, 2023.
Jeremiah Kioni

Catch Up Quick: Gachagua, on a charm offensive of Limuru last weekend, asked Uhuru to forgive those who mocked him in 2022, saying their mistakes had caught up with them.

He argues that the Mt Kenya Region was increasingly becoming divided and it was paramount for leaders to regain solidarity.

Here are five more stories to keep tabs on today;

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This newsletter was written by Derrick Kubasu and edited by Brian Muuo.

Washington Mito contributed to the content.

Graphics prepared by Adongo Kyalo.

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