7 interesting things that made the news this week (12th Jan – 18th Jan)

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Didn’t have time to catch up with all of the week’s news stories? Relax, follow Herbusiness summary and commentary of the most interesting things that made the news headlines in Kenya.

HerBusiness milestone

Have you read the book, ‘Outlier: The Story of Success’. It claims that once you put in 10,000 hours of work you become an expert in that field. That’s 417 days. I don’t know. I think what you should take from it is that you have to be consistent to develop better skills or habits. And for blogs, 1000 articles is pretty something. HerBusiness reached the 1000 articles milestone this week. There was no celebration. All we want is your continued support.

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Kenyans’ banking habits

From one study, it turns out that Kenyans prefer dealing with human faces. 80% of us, when it comes to banks. This goes against the push to put customer service response behind a screen or a voice. This finding is from, a Kenya Bankers of Association study, Customer Service Survey Quarter Four 2018. 6,121 respondents was the sample size. A recommendation about this was, “further research is needed to establish whether this trend owes to low levels of awareness about the value proposition of chatbots, robots and other data-driven…technologies.”

Another intetesting finding was that almost half of Kenyans prefer the mobile banking channel. Only 16% prefer online banking.

Kisumu going digital

Kisumu county is successfully testing a platform to change how the public interacts with county leadership. Through WhatsApp, anyone will be able to inquire and get relevant information. This could be about healthcare services or tourism. Users will send “hello” to WhatsApp profile +254 756 742 421. This will be followed by release of a drop-down menu requiring users to select area of interests. Levit Nudit, one of those working on the program, said, “it is very similar to USSD codes like *100# with the only major difference being that it’s running on WhatsApp.” It is hoped that this will include other areas like county jobs and tenders in future.

Private guards to get guns

Don’t panic. Only those guarding select facilities or resources will get them. Government is looking to go ahead with this in the wake of the latest terror attack to plague Kenya. Private Security Regulatory Authority wants this actualized in 6 months. The CEO, Fazul Mohamed, assured that the move has support of all major national security organs. He was speaking when he met representatives of security firms, this week. “Those to be armed are in Government and public installations, and those in cash-in-transit. We are preparing for a thorough vetting of employers and guarantee to ensure its success.”

Government soften stand on car imports

Trade Secretary, Peter Munya issued a directive that the limit of car imports, into Kenya, be reduced to 5 from 8 years. This meants that only cars made as far back as 2015 could be imported. One effect, assessed, was that the average cost of a car would rise by sh.1 million. Munya changed heart in a subsequent TV interview. Stating that he didn’t want to lock out the middle class from owning cars, he excluded cars with engine capacity of 1500cc and below from his directive. What do you think? Is the Government being too soft for your liking?

Girl child

A 14-year old girl, Juliana Kobi, in Tana River county is looking to raise school fees to join Form One. She scored 358 marks and has only been able to raise sh.4,000 in her work as a househelp. Her family has not been able to raise the sh.53,554 needed as school fees – not counting the personal items she would need. She resorted to walk door-to-door and hasn’t been so successful so far. Even the county leadership wasn’t so helpful, she said. “I have been to offices in the county but everytime I got to the reception I was told that I can’t see a minister or even an officer. So I decided to seek help from well-wishers.”

Longest natural hair in Kenya

William Kaimenyi, 59 years old, wants recognition for having the longest African natural hair in the country. The man from Meru county has not shaved for 33 years. He even has a lenghy goatee to go with. The bachelor enjoys fame in his area and spends time resolving problems in his capacity as elder. Maybe William is a bit extreme. But African hair is okay. It’s not “unprofessional.” It’s very okay:

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