Category Archives: Nairobi Jobs

Oil Pipeline, Economics & Politics

It’s been reported that the oil pipeline from Uganda is going to go through Tanzania, not Kenya. Two forgotten facts about the Uganda oil decision are that; (1) President Museveni of Uganda has been steadfast that he wanted to refine oil in Uganda, not export raw crude (2) Uganda’s oil has been said to be waxy or heavy. This means it would require complex heating to keep it flowing along a complex oil pipeline through the rift valleys and hills – to the coast of Kenya.

M7 poster 2

The cost, insecurity and difficulty of building infrastructure have been cited reasons that Uganda opted to go through Tanzania. Still Kenya has several LAPSSET projects on the cards including an oil pipeline to go to Lamu where there would be a new highway, railway, coal plant and modern, deep-sea port.

Pipeline Impact

Last year at the TDS Nairobi summit, during the 10th  Ministerial Conference (MC10) of the World Trade Organization (WTO), a session was held on local content in extractive (and oil) industries. Some interesting comments there included:

  • It is a legitimate objective for any resource rich country to try to maximize the value of its resources.
  • If a country puts restrictions on raw exports, it may distort the local economy; it creates artificial demand – and if it is not efficient, local related industries will not survive.
  • Kenya energy expert Patrick Obath suggested that Kenya, Uganda and South Sudan have to talk together and implement projects together for projects like the oil pipeline to be viable. That would also have to happen to get more value-addition from the oil in the countries e.g. can the countries plan to get fertilizer from oil?
  • With mining, you have 20 years of opportunity for local suppliers and jobs, but with an oil pipeline that’s only there in the beginning, then goes away once the pipeline is built (there wont be many local jobs after, and communities don’t get an economic boom from having an oil pipeline passing through their land..which may lead to some local frustration).

More on Kenya Pipeline:

oil tankers

  • The Kenya Pipeline Company is charged with transporting and storing of petroleum products.
  • A (presidential task force on parastatal reforms proposes the Treasury incorporate a holding company known as the Government Investment Corporation (GIC), into which Kenya Pipeline Company should be transferred to determine (its) intended privatization.
  • Meanwhile Kenya Pipeline is continuing with its projects including replacing the current Mombasa-Nairobi Pipeline.

Parliament Salaries 2014

This week, we get a look at the payslips of two Kenyan members of Parliament (MP); One from the Nairobi Senator, Gideon Mbuvi Sonko, and the other from National assembly representative for Homa Bay, Peter Kaluma. While they earn roughly the same amount, they differ because one does not need his salary, while the other says he can’t live on his salary (and stretch himself further).

Kaluma: Peter Kaluma released his payslip to support his position before a court case, in which he was asked to increase his monetary support for a child, which he said he could not do – as he took home zero in net salary.

Bits of his payslip


  • Salary Kshs 319,500 (~$3,759)
  • ‘Administrative’ 213,000
  • ‘Sitting allowance’ 10,000
  • ‘Vehicle fixed cost’ 356,525


  • Pay-as-you-Earn Tax (PAYE) Kshs 257,839 ($3,033)
  • Motor car advance 184,164
  • Co-Op Parliament 153,611Pension 40,257
  • Parliament SACCO (Parliamentary Savings and Credit Co-operative Society (Pacoso)
  • Pacoso Shares 20,000
  • Pacoso loan 54,212  

Sonko:  Gideon Sonko, the flamboyant Nairobi Senator, also released his payslip on his Facebook page to show that he has maintained his commitment since he joined politics in 2010 to give (his) salary back to wananchi (people) and listed several churches that were beneficiaries of his largess.

Bits of his payslip


  • Basic salary Kshs 319,500 ($3,758)
  • ‘Administrative’ 213,000
  • Sitting allowance 30,000
  • Car maintenance 356,525
    ‘Responsibility 96,000
  • Total Kshs 1,015,025 ($11.941)


  • PAYE 292,439 ($3,440, equal to 28.8%)
  • Pension 40,257 
  • Pacoso shares 50,000
  • Pacoso loan 64,703

In line with previous other discussions of the salaries of members of parliament, MP’s earn 2.6 times what they did seven years ago. But at least they are paying an amount of tax, as other income top earners, on the full amount of their entire gross income (equivalent to about 28% tax), not just their basic salary, as in the past that left their hefty allowances (vehicle, responsibility etc.) untaxed.

Some predictions over the next few years;

  • MP’s will continue to increase their salaries because they can.
  • MP’s will move the elections date back from April 2017 to sometime in 2018 to get a full five-year term.
  • MP’s will scrap nominated parliamentary seats so that only people who campaign as hard as they, can enjoy the benefits of their ‘hard work’.
  • MPs will move to try to allow politicians to run for more than one seat so that in the event they lose a large seat (President), they have something to fall back on (e.g. in parliament, or as cabinet secretaries).

Award Season Part Trois

Following on part II

The Anzisha Prize for young Africans (15-20 yrs) who have solved a problem /challenges in their community (via @kenyanpundit)

The Android App competition. in the dev. challenge participants can win prizes of up to $25,000. D/L is 14 May.

The 2nd eLearning Africa Photo Competition runs through April 21.

Facebook’s first hire in Africa – will be a growth manager in Nigeria (via @bellanaija)

The 2011 Freedom to Create Prize main prize and imprisoned artist prize is open to 15 July (via @Kwani)

Various jobs at Google East Africa .

iHub Mentorship program. D/L is 6 April.

Partial scholarships available to attend the 4th Global Forum on Innovation & Entrepreneurship. D/L is April 1

Kenya Government Science & Technology scholarships (29) to study in China, for undergraduates and postgraduates in engineering, medicine, computer science, and pharmacy. D/L April 7.

Connected Kenya Vision 2030 ICT awards from the Kenya ICT Board.

Maisha Filmlab with free screenwriting directing camera sound and production workshops in East Africa. (via @mkaigwa)

Mass Challenge a $1 million start up competition (via @egm_photo)

Panos Eastern Africa media fellowships. D/ L April 6.

Strathmore University’s Mobile Academy . D/L 31 March

Winners of the Nokia Idea storm will have their ideas developed into phone apps. D/L is April 14.

TEDGlobal 2011 takes place in Edinburgh, Scotland in July 2011. It moves from traditional Oxford this and 75 places available, and D/L is April 4.

Africa Youth Trust Young Women Leaders funded by the UN Women Governance and Gender Programme. D/L April 15.

Modern careers: Someone got hired via twitter

Sports: The Watamu Triathlon takes place April 9 & 10 at the Kenya coast. D/L April 4.

Photo is from a blog tracking a Cairo to Cape 12,000 kilometre bicycle expedition (equivalent to 4 Tour de Frances in 4 months). It’s now complete after a tough stint in Kenya.

Award Season Part Deux

This is a continuation of a series highlighting some open awards, that may be about to close in the next few weeks.

The Acumen Fund East Africa Fellows Program aimed at entrepreneurs or people working on ground breaking programs with social impact in east Africa and will receive training in leadership , and is modeled around an executive MBA. D/L is 15 April for launch in July 2011

The Africagrowth Institute 2011 SMME Awards that recognizes small, medium or micro enterprise (SMME)companies that are growing sustainably and contributing to economic growth. D/L is 30 June

(For Women): The Anita Borg Agent Award for ladies who demonstrate use of technology to change lives. Sponsored by Google, it has prizes of $5,000 in travel reimbursement to attend the Grace Hopper Celebration of Women in Computing. D/L is May 2

(For Women): The annual Business Daily Top 40 Women Under 40 award series in Kenya that recognizes women achievers in the world of business. D/L is 10 April.

The Diageo Africa Business Reporting Awards that recognize outstanding journalists, editors, blogs, and other media that feature coverage of the African businesses scene. D/L is 27 March.

(For Writers): The Golden Baobab Prize for Literature is a Pan-African literary award. Details here.

The Nestle Prize that recognizes projects in the fields of nutrition, clean water, or rural development that create shared value. D/L is 30 June.

The Shuttleworth Foundation for people ready to commit to undertake social change through innovation. They review applications in May 2011 for September intake.

(For Journalists): The United Nations journalism fellows program Dag Hammarskjöld Scholarship Fund program aimed at developing country journalists with an interest in international affairs and winners get to travel to and report on the United Nations from New York. D/L is 6 April.

(For Writers): The World Bank Essay competition open to people aged 18 – 25 to write about youth migration. Details here but the deadline is tomorrow – 17 March.

EDIT: PIVOT 25 competition for developers in June 2011 with prize money of up to $75,000. Deadline is April 15.

The Nairobi Stock Exchange young investors challenge whose registration period is on-going through April.

Any other awards that can be highlighted here?

VC Coffee Chat

On Monday June 28 at the iHub in Nairobi there will be a talk on venture capital, in continuation of a series of events that bring together local financiers and entrepreneurs.

In preparation for that, we had a chat with Eline Blaauboer of TBL Mirror Fund which is a Dutch venture capital fund that has made four investments in Kenya and are also branching around East Africa.

The Fund invests a minimum of EUR 100,000(~Kshs 10 million) taking minority stakes in companies that show fast growth and the potential to be market leaders. They look for well-managed ambitious and visionary SME’s and TBL invests in all sectors particularly where the partners have extensive industry knowledge, as a VC focused on a specific sector is not sustainable here yet. It’s interesting to note that, while it is said in local banking that women are not ambitious enough to dream big and attract large funding, ½ of their investee are women-led companies

– TBN are hiring both an investment manager and an investment analyst.
– On Monday June 28 at the iHub in Nairobi there will be a VC 101 event with a talk on venture capital given by Vincent Kouwenhoven of the EVA Fund
– Recap of recent VC activity in the region by Ratio-Magazine.