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Kenyan official says security situation under control after hotel attack

by admin   |   Posted on Wednesday, January 16th, 2019

Military in Nairobi, Kenya | Reuters

The Kenyan government said Tuesday the security situation in the country is under control after an unknown number of terrorists attacked an upmarket hotel and office complex in the capital of Nairobi, and killed at least six people.

Security teams have evacuated scores of Kenyans and other nationalities from the buildings after a nine-hour operation, according to Fred Matiang’i, Cabinet Secretary for Interior and Coordination of the National Government.

He said Tuesday evening that the government was in the final stages of mopping up the area, securing evidence and documenting the consequences of the unfortunate event, adding that the country is now secure and that the nation remains calm.

The DusitD2 Complex which houses several multi-national offices and a hotel is located in the leafy Riverside area of Westlands, Nairobi.

About four gunmen armed with rifles and grenades drove to the 14 Riverside Drive at around 15:00 local time and staged a deadly attack, leaving a trail of destruction.

Police said the gang arrived at the entrance of the DusitD2 hotel and alighted before one of them started to shoot aimlessly.

Al-Shabab terrorist group claimed responsibility for the attack, saying its fighters conducted a terrorist attack in upmarket Kenya, killing 47 people inside the hotel. — Reuters

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Kenyan scientists reveal possible link between hot food, esophageal cancer

by Robie de Guzman   |   Posted on Tuesday, May 7th, 2019

Preliminary findings by scientists suggest that people who like their food and beverages to be warmer than 60 degrees celsius are at a higher risk of developing esophageal cancer.

In Kenya, hot food is widely believed to be healthier, while cold food is viewed as dull and unsatisfying.

“Most people prefer hot or warm food because this is the cold season. If you eat cold food, it will affect you. But if you eat hot food, you will feel warm and energetic,” said Nairobi resident Regan Dennis.

For years, researchers have sought to establish the effects of very hot food on the esophagus, the tube through which food travels to the stomach. A study published in the journal “cancer epidemiology” identified thermal injury from hot food and beverages as a possible cause of esophageal cancer.

“It’s an irritant, the heat. You are causing ulceration of the lining. The lining of the esophagus and the throat. And once you cause this constant damage to the lining, it leads to mutation and finally leads to cancer. So, it’s carcinogenic to cause constant irritation of the mucus lining,” said ENT Surgeon John Muiru.

Researchers found that tea drinkers who like their tea to be warmer than 60 degrees celsius and drank more than two large cups daily have a 90 percent higher risk of developing esophageal cancer.

This is bad news for tea-drinkers in Kenya’s western region, who are among those taking the hottest tea in the world. Their beverage is usually 72.1 degrees celsius.

“The ideal temperature is the body temperature, which is about 37 degrees centigrade. Anything above that will be damaging the cells. The cells are designed to survive within the body temperature,” Muiru said.

Esophageal cancer accounts for 11 percent of new cancer cases in Kenya. The latest discovery has had a jarring effect on tea-lovers. But the studies are not conclusive and researchers suggest that the evidence should be evaluated further.

As scientists seek a conclusive answer, tea-lovers begin to grapple with the idea that hotter might not be better after all.

“Food shouldn’t be too hot or too cold. It should be warm,” Saidi Gitau, a Nairobi resident said. (REUTERS)

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PNP all set for security during elections

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Monday, April 29th, 2019

The Philippine National Police (PNP) is all set for the implementation of security for the May 13 elections.

Two police officers will be deployed per polling precinct in areas with high security threat, according to PNP Chief PGen. Oscar Albayalde.

The deployed policemen will be 50 meters away from the polling precinct. They also cannot enter the polling precinct unless it is allowed by the electoral board.

“We already gave instructions to our police officers to coordinate with the different EBs or electoral board especially so in critical areas so that even before the conduct of the actual voting ay iyong mga pulis natin ay makalapit na (our policemen can come closer to the premises) with permission of the EBs,” Albayalde said.

Albayalde also met with the head of different units to monitor election-related violence and the deployment of policemen in training for election duty.

READ: Over 29,000 join local absentee voting

The PNP also aim to prevent vote buying. Albayalde advise voters to vote for the right candidate and not rely on bribes. He also cited the importance of voters education.

“Kung hindi po mabantayan ng pulisya ang vote buying, tanggapin nalang siguro natin ng tanggapin iyong pera, pero iboto parin natin ang nararapat, I think the best thing here is voters education malaman ng mga tao kung sino ang dapat iboto hindi yung kung sino ang nagbigay ng mas malaking pera sa kanila yun ang iboboto nila (If the police cannot monitor vote buying, maybe just accept the money but still vote for the right candidate. I think the best thing here is voters’ education. Vote for the right candidate and not who will give more money),” Albayalde said.—Aileen Cerrudo (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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PNP on full alert for the long holiday

by Aileen Cerrudo   |   Posted on Wednesday, April 17th, 2019

The Philippine National Police (PNP) is on full alert for any incidents and emergencies this long holiday.

This includes the local units, the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO), the Highway Patrol Group, the Explosives and Ordinance Division, the Maritime Group, and the PNP Aviation Security Group.

PNP spokesperson Bernard Banac said police officers are randomly boarding buses to secure the safety of the passengers.

“Ang kailangan natin dito ay ma-prevent natin at mabigyan ng seguridad ang ating mga kababayan na nakasakay sa mga public transportation. Hindi na natin kailangang hintayin na may mangyaring krimen ang mahalaga ay ma-prevent na natin, (We need to prevent [crimes] provide security to our citizens in public transportation. We don’t have to wait for any crime to happen. We need to prevent it),” he said.

The PNP has called on the public to not hesitate in reporting any suspicious individuals or items around the area.

Meanwhile, the PNP has also prepared two 4×4 trucks and a coaster that can be used to augment vehicles in transport terminals in case there aren’t enough buses to accommodate passengers on their way to the provinces.

According to Banac, they can only provide assistance to passengers in Metro Manila.

He said they will be in close coordination with the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA), and the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) to determine if there are stranded passengers in need of assistance.

“Hindi na ito makakalayo pa sa mga lalawigan kukulangin din ang ating mga sasakyan pang emergency lang dito sa Metro Manila (We can no longer go further in the provinces because we don’t even have enough vehicles here in Metro Manila),” Banac said.—Aileen Cerrudo (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

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