Stephen is editor of The Kenyan Spectator, a national weekly publishing from Nairobi. His main areas of interest are foreign relations, security and democracy as well as economy and information technology.

My Articles

July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Analysts in Kenya are debating whether their country, an ally of the United States in the campaign against terror, could shift direction if December presidential elections are won by a candidate who enjoys strong support among Muslims.Opinion polls show opposition candidate Raila Odinga has come from behind to lead the race against incumbent President Mwai Kibaki, who has been in power since 2003 and is seeking a second and final five-year term. A third candidate has single-digit support.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Conservative Anglican leaders in Africa say they have done what is "humanly possible" to avoid a split from their U.S. counterparts ahead of a September deadline for liberals in the American church to follow orthodoxy on the issue of homosexuality.When the Sept. 30 deadline arrives, Archbishop of Nigeria Peter Akinola told Cybercast News Service, the U.S. Episcopal Church (ECUSA) leaders will have to make a decision as to whether they will stop blessing same-sex unions and consecrating homosexual bishops.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Washington views constitutional reform as one of the best ways to avoid future conflict in Kenya, traditionally one of Africa's most stable democracies. Kenya is now on the verge of civil war, just days following a still-unresolved presidential election dispute.The violence here has strained national security systems. Some security analysts believe terrorists could take advantage of the situation to revive dormant cells or even launch new attacks against foreign facilities from Kenyan soil.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - A shortage of genuine democracy in Africa will hamper the effectiveness of an African "standby force" being established to pre-empt conflicts and support peace efforts, a leading conflict management researcher here has warned.Mohammed Guyo, who heads the conflict management program at the Institute of Security Studies in Kenya, said the failure by some African countries to adhere to the rule of law may see the force being used on missions that do not benefit society.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - For many Kenyans, the race for the Democratic nomination in the U.S. presidential election has sparked much greater-than-usual interest, partly because Barack Obama's father was a Kenyan.Commentators here say that in past American election cycles, Africans have been more interested in the presidential contest than the in the primaries."I think the last time I saw this kind of interest in the American electoral process was when [former President Bill] Clinton was going for his second term," said Jotham Kabuye, a Nairobi attorney.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - The head of the African Union has for the first time in the bloc's history broken its "see no evil" policy with regard to Zimbabwe -- a sign that the continent's leaders are losing patience with President Robert Mugabe's regime.The A.U. said armed attacks on opposition (Movement for Democratic Change) leaders and supporters in the capital, Harare, earlier this week were an embarrassment to the continent.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Under pressure from the international community and facing unspecified warnings from the United States, Kenya's political rivals Thursday agreed to a power-sharing deal to end a violent, two-month-old conflict.President Mwai Kibaki and opposition leader Raila Odinga, whose supporters accused Kibaki of rigging last December's election, agreed to a formula that appoints Odinga to the post of prime minister and allows for a shared cabinet.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Berlin, Germany (CNSNews.com) - Plans by the European Union to develop a system that will give law enforcement agencies access to DNA and other personal data of the bloc's citizens are raising privacy concerns but also being welcomed as a critical step in fighting terrorism and other crimes."It is an affront on personal privacy," said Peter Hustinx, who holds the title of European Data Protection Supervisor (EDPS).
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - The decision by a former finance minister and senior member of Zimbabwe's ruling party to challenge President Robert Mugabe in elections next month has caused a ripple of excitement in the cash-strapped southern African country.Simba Makoni pledged to defeat Mugabe in the March 29 election, ending a 28-year rule characterized in latter years by growing repression and economic collapse. He told a press conference in Harare that he was standing as an independent candidate.On Wednesday, the ruling ZANU-PF party expelled Makoni.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Berlin, Germany (CNSNews.com) - Europe plans to introduce tighter border controls in the coming weeks in a bid to block illegal migration, identified by the United States as a major risk factor in terrorism threat here.German Federal Interior Minister Dr. Wolfgang Sch?uble said the country is using its presidency of the E.U. to improve operational capability of Frontex, the European Border Management Agency, to tighten security at the bloc's external borders.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - As President Bush begins a visit to Africa Friday, commentators say some of his administration's actions have had a constructive impact on relations, although skepticism remains, particularly in the field of security-related policies.Among the benefits seen are improved governance, education and projects helping AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis patients.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Berlin, Germany (CNSNews.com) - The Group of Eight highly-industrialized nations has launched an initiative to enable selected underdeveloped countries to manufacture drugs to tackle diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria and tuberculosis.Access to such drugs is often limited because of their high cost.The G8 plan will supplement the 2003 initiative by President Bush to commit $15 billion over five years to fight HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis in specified countries in Africa and the Caribbean.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is calling on Kenya's leaders to make compromises to stabilize a country that plays an important regional role in the U.S.-led anti-terrorism war.Rice visited the East African country on Monday to deliver a message from President Bush, who is visiting five African nations --Kenya not among them -- on his second trip to the continent.Bush earlier called on leaders here to consider forming a "grand coalition" to resolve the crisis triggered by a disputed election last December.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Berlin, Germany (CNSNews.com) - Russia's opposition to a U.S. missile defense shield in Eastern Europe stems partly from what the Kremlin perceives as European governments' reneging on a post-Cold War agreement that limited military deployments across the continent, a security analyst said.Peter Zeihan, director of global analysis at the Texas-based private intelligence firm Stratfor, said Russia is not intimidated by the missile interceptors but is suspicious of western countries' intentions in placing them near Russian territory.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - A decision by the U.S. House Foreign Affairs Committee to approve an increase of funding for the fight against HIV-AIDS to $50 billion over five years has been welcomed by people working in the AIDS sector in Africa, where the deadly pandemic has been most costly.The bipartisan bill, which is expected to be debated in the House in March, drops an earlier provision that required specified amounts of the President's Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) funding to be used for programs promoting abstinence from sex.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Berlin, Germany (CNSNews.com) - European lawmakers are proposing measures to strengthen the fight against a vice that costs Western companies billions of dollars each year and is used by organized criminals to raise funds.Under legislation under consideration in the European Parliament, any infringement of intellectual property rights would be treated as a criminal offense and could carry a $240,000 fine and/or four years' imprisonment.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - A threat to bar Kenyan leaders from traveling to the United States was one of the main reasons why calm returned after an eruption of election-related violence early this year, according to U.S. Ambassador to Kenya Michael Ranneberger.Warnings of a visa ban "proved highly effective" in helping the East African country return to normalcy, the ambassador told Cybercast News Service in a Web chat interview.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Berlin, Germany (CNSNews.com) - African governments must do more to tackle conflicts and human rights abuses on that continent if they want to benefit from globalization, according to German Chancellor Angela Merkel.Merkel, whose country chairs the Group of Eight (G8) leading industrialized nations, told African representatives meeting here that conflicts in Sudan and Somalia and human rights violations in Zimbabwe are affecting how the world views Africa and its ability to cooperate in socioeconomic development programs.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Nairobi, Kenya (CNSNews.com) - Zimbabwe's security chiefs, including the heads of the army and police, have threatened not to recognize the outcome of the March 29 elections if President Robert Mugabe is defeated, prompting fears of a possible coup.African security analysts said the possibility of an army takeover if Mugabe loses is slim, but that if perceptions of unfair elections leads to violence -- as happened in Kenya earlier this year -- the military could act.And if it does, they say, the African Union would likely stand by and not intervene.
July 7, 2008, 8:18 PM EDT
Berlin, Germany (CNSNews.com) - German authorities are increasing security around the country, expecting protests against a Group of Eight summit to be held here next month. Among other things, the G8 leaders will consider a proposal to help African nations set up a peacekeeping force.The gathering of leaders of the world's most highly industrialized nations will be held at the Baltic Sea resort of Heiligendamm on June 6-8.