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Reuben Kyama

Nairobi, Kenya
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About Reuben
Reuben Kyama is a distinguished Kenyan journalist with over 15 years of experience in both broadcast and print media. Based in Nairobi, he has reported on a wide range of topics, with a particular focus on economic and international relations in Africa. His work has been featured in leading media outlets such as The New York Times, Germany’s Deutsche Welle, and the Voice of America (VoA). Kyama's reporting delves into critical issues such as economic growth, youth unemployment, and policy development, often incorporating expert opinions to shed light on the continent's challenges and prospects for sustainable development.

Kyama's academic background includes graduate courses in the Erasmus Mundus Masters: Journalism, Media and Globalisation program at the University of Aarhus, University of Amsterdam, and City University London, supported by an Erasmus Mundus Scholarship from the European Union. He also attended the Danish School of Journalism in Aarhus as a DANIDA Fellow, courtesy of a fellowship from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Denmark. His educational pursuits have significantly contributed to his depth of understanding in his field.

In addition to his journalism career, Kyama is the founder of One World Public Relations, a rapidly expanding strategic communications firm in East Africa. He has provided consultancy services for international organizations, such as the World Health Organization at the African Union Summit in Uganda, and has led media campaigns for entities like the African Capacity Building Foundation. Kyama has also facilitated high-level media training workshops for various clients. Currently, he serves as the Africa Bureau Chief for Hoffman & Hoffman Worldwide and is a Fellow at the Africa Leadership Initiative Media Fellowship program, supported by Bloomberg Philanthropies, further cementing his role as a leading voice in African media and journalism.
English Swahili
Video Package (Web / Broadcast) Audio package (Radio / Podcast) Interview (Video / Broadcast)
Fact Checking

Toxic from Switzerland: Syngenta Foundation spreads highly dangerous pesticides

30 Dec 2023  |  zsz.ch
The Syngenta Foundation for Sustainable Agriculture, based in Basel, Switzerland, is promoting the use of highly dangerous pesticides in Kenya, some of which are banned in Switzerland and the EU due to their toxicity and potential carcinogenic properties. Despite the foundation's claim of promoting sustainable agriculture, the investigation by Tamedia and Reflekt reveals that the necessary protective equipment is not provided to Kenyan farmers, leading to health risks. The foundation's activities are intertwined with the commercial interests of Syngenta, the leading pesticide seller in Kenya, raising questions about the foundation's nonprofit status and the ethical implications of its operations. The article also discusses the broader impact of pesticide use on health and the environment, particularly in developing countries.

Israel surrounds Gaza city as death toll rises

08 Nov 2023  |  www.dw.com
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced that Gaza city is surrounded, with Defense Minister Yoav Gallant stating that Israeli forces have entered the city's center. Palestinian Health Minister Mai al-Kaila reported over 10,400 deaths and more than 25,000 injuries due to ongoing Israeli attacks, with a significant number of victims being children, women, and the elderly. The World Health Organization noted that an average of 160 children are killed daily in Gaza.

Urbanization Top Priority at UN Habitat Assembly

10 Jun 2023  |  voaafrica.com
At the second United Nations Habitat Assembly in Nairobi, Kenya, participants emphasized the importance of adopting the U.N.’s New Urban Agenda to guide sustainable urbanization. U.N. officials and experts discussed the need for data, sustainable city guidelines, and the implementation of the new framework to create better, safer, and resilient cities. Issues such as overcrowded housing, pollution, and strained essential services were highlighted, with a focus on the role of local and regional governments. The assembly concluded with a call for action on the Sustainable Development Goals amid global crises.

Death Toll Rises in Kenya Attack as Distraught Relatives Scramble

16 Jan 2019  |  www.nytimes.com
Abdalla Dahir and Feisal Ahmed, employees of a London-based development company in Nairobi, were killed in a terrorist attack by Shabab militants while having lunch. Kenya's police chief, Joseph Boinnet, announced that the death toll had risen to 21, including an American and a British national.

In Kenya, and Across Africa, an Unexpected Epidemic: Obesity

27 Jan 2018  |  www.nytimes.com
Obesity rates in sub-Saharan Africa are rapidly increasing, with eight of the twenty nations with the fastest-rising rates of adult obesity located in Africa. Economic growth has led to lifestyle changes, including the consumption of more junk food and less physical activity. Public health systems, previously focused on infectious diseases, are ill-prepared for this emerging crisis. Kenya, despite still dealing with malnutrition, is experiencing a doubling of obesity rates since 1990. The influx of fast-food chains and targeted marketing of products like Coca-Cola to lower economic classes exacerbates the problem. The stigma of being thin, associated with poverty or illness, persists, complicating public health efforts. Personal stories, such as those of Valentine Akinyi and Fraciah Wangari's son Samuel, highlight the struggles of individuals facing obesity in a changing economic landscape.

Debate Continues Over Uganda Army Role in South Sudan Conflict 29 JANUARY 2014 | BY REUBEN KYAMA | SOURCE: VOICE OF AMERICA Speakers at a Nairobi forum sponsored by the Rift Valley Institute expressed concern for the future of South Sudan following a ceasefire agreement brokered in Addis Ababa late last week. Participants also raised issues concerning the presence of Ugandan forces in the conflict.

Role reversal as African technology expands in Europe Reuben Kyama with Anca Teodorescu in Bucharest AFP August 13, 2014 Nairobi (AFP) - Africans have long used technology developed abroad, but now a Kenyan cash transfer network which bypasses banks is being adopted in Europe. The M-Pesa mobile money transfer system which allows clients to send cash with their telephones has transformed how business is done in east Africa, and is now spreading to Romania. "From east Africa to eastern Europe, that's quite phenomenal when you think about it," Michael Joseph, who heads Vodafone's Mobile Money business, told AFP in the Kenyan capital Nairobi.

Forests for the future: Kenya's carbon credit scheme When 61-year old Mercy Joshua was young, the vast forests of southeastern Kenya teemed with wildlife, but decades of unchecked deforestation by locals have devastated the land. She watched forests dwindle and rivers dry up across her homeland of Kasigau -- a semi-arid savanna grassland dotted with shrubs, woodland and small rugged hills -- as people cut down the trees to scratch a living by selling them for firewood.

Obama in Kenya: An Upbeat Tone, but Notes of Discord, Too

26 Jul 2015  |  www.nytimes.com
President Obama visited Kenya, his father's home country, and expressed optimism about Africa's progress and potential. He addressed human rights and same-sex marriage, urging against discrimination and comparing it to the segregation of African-Americans. Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta agreed on the importance of balancing security and liberty but firmly rejected Obama's stance on gay rights, citing cultural differences.

Development Expert Lauds Africa's Continued Economic Growth

27 May 2015  |  Voice of America
The article discusses the economic growth in Africa, highlighting the continent's expected growth rate of up to 4.5 percent over the next two years as per the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa. It emphasizes the need for growth to address the increasing number of young job seekers due to a population bulge. Prof. Emmanuel Nnadozie, Executive Secretary of the African Capacity Building Foundation (ACBF), credits the growth to improved economic management and fewer civil wars, with contributions from policy think tanks supported by ACBF. The article also touches on the challenges Africa faces, such as low-intensity conflicts, terrorism, and youth unemployment. It mentions the upcoming G7 summit in Germany, where African leaders will discuss investments and economic reforms. Nnadozie remains optimistic about Africa's progress and potential for further economic development through trade, cooperation, and good management.

Western Terrorism Alerts May Fuel Terrorism in Kenya

24 Feb 2015  |  www.nytimes.com
Kenya's coastal tourism industry is in decline, largely due to Western travel warnings following terrorist attacks. These advisories, especially the stringent American warning, have been criticized by Kenyan officials as 'economic sabotage.' The collapse of tourism may exacerbate unemployment and poverty, potentially increasing the risk of terrorism. The Tides Inn, like many businesses on the Kenyan coast, is experiencing a severe downturn, with empty tables and unsold products, such as Tusker beer.

International Flights Are Gradually Resumed at Airport in Nairobi

09 Aug 2013  |  www.nytimes.com
International flights resumed at Nairobi's Jomo Kenyatta International Airport following a fire that disabled the hub. Kenya Airways was at 35% capacity, aiming for full service by the end of the day. Arrivals were redirected to the state pavilion, with officials assuring safety despite reduced comfort levels.

Blaze Damages Nairobi’s International Airport

08 Aug 2013  |  www.nytimes.com
A significant fire erupted at Nairobi's Jomo Kenyatta International Airport on the anniversary of the 1998 US Embassy bombings in Kenya and Tanzania. The blaze, which lasted four hours, halted operations at East Africa's busiest airport and caused extensive damage to the terminal. Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta visited the site and, although dismayed by the destruction, confirmed there were no casualties. The airport was partially reopened for domestic and cargo flights, with plans to set up a temporary terminal for international passengers. The cause of the fire is under investigation, and officials have not immediately linked the incident to terrorism.

Grenade Attack in Kenya Kills Police Officer

29 Aug 2012  |  www.nytimes.com
A Kenyan police officer was killed and 13 others wounded in a grenade attack during Mombasa riots following the murder of radical cleric Sheik Aboud Rogo Mohammed. The cleric, accused by the US and UN of supporting Somali militant group Shabab, was killed by unknown gunmen, sparking protests and violence, including church burnings. The US Treasury and UN Security Council had sanctioned Mohammed for promoting violence in East Africa. Human Rights Watch and Kenya's prime minister condemned the violence, urging police restraint.

Airlines Refuse to Transport Radical Cleric

11 Jan 2010  |  www.nytimes.com
Jamaican cleric Abdullah el-Faisal, known for his radical statements and connections with convicted terrorists, was deported to Gambia but returned to Kenya after airlines in Nigeria refused to transport him. Kenya's deportation efforts are complicated by several countries denying him entry or passage. He was spotted at Nairobi's Industrial Area Prison, although he has not been charged in court. Faisal has previously been convicted in Britain for inciting racial hatred and may have influenced the Nigerian man accused of the December 2009 Northwest Airlines flight bombing attempt.

Kenya: Efforts to Deport Cleric Fail

06 Jan 2010  |  www.nytimes.com
Kenyan authorities are struggling to deport Jamaican-born Muslim cleric Abdullah el-Faisal due to airlines' refusal to transport him and Tanzania's rejection of his entry. Tanzania's Home Affairs minister, Lawrence Masha, stated that they do not intend to allow his entry and that no formal request for deportation had been made. El-Faisal is said to have possibly inspired the Nigerian man accused of attempting to bomb an American airliner.

Kenya’s Political Rivals Meet

25 Jan 2008  |  www.nytimes.com
Kenya's political crisis following the disputed re-election of President Mwai Kibaki saw its first face-to-face meeting between Kibaki and opposition leader Raila Odinga, mediated by former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. Despite the meeting, opposition leaders accused Kibaki of fraudulence and attempting to legitimize his presidency. The political standoff continues with both sides backed by hardliners unwilling to compromise. The violence since the December 27 elections has resulted in over 650 deaths and 250,000 displaced, with Human Rights Watch reporting organized ethnic-based violence in the Rift Valley. The US ambassador to Kenya, Michael E. Ranneberger, expressed that dialogue could be slow and difficult, while peace advocates like George Wachira see the meeting as a positive step.

For Some Kenyan Villagers, the Action Is in Des Moines

04 Jan 2008  |  www.nytimes.com
Nyangoma-Kogelo, a village in Kenya and the ancestral home of Senator Barack Obama, remains calm amidst postelection violence in other parts of the country. Residents, who admire Obama as a role model, have been following the Iowa caucuses with interest, despite being limited to radio updates. The village, located in the Luo tribe's homeland, has avoided the ethnic fighting that has occurred elsewhere after the presidential elections. Said Obama, the senator's uncle, reports being stuck in the village due to violence in nearby Kisumu but confirms that Nyangoma-Kogelo itself is peaceful.

Neglected Poor in Africa Make Their Own Safety Nets

28 Aug 2005  |  www.nytimes.com
In Africa, where less than 10 percent of workers have health insurance or social security, informal workers like Nogaye Sow are creating their own safety nets. Sow, a street vendor in Senegal, uses a makeshift health insurance card for free clinic consultations and discounted medicine for her family. This trend is growing across the continent, especially in West Africa, with over 200,000 members in 11 countries, as people grow tired of waiting for government action.

Kenya: Taking Inspiration from John Paul II

09 Apr 2005  |  www.nytimes.com
Thousands gathered at the Holy Family Basilica in Nairobi to watch the funeral of Pope John Paul II on television. Kenya, with a 30 percent Roman Catholic population, often found itself at odds with the pope's teachings, particularly on the use of condoms during the AIDS crisis. Despite this, the pope was seen as an inspirational figure, with individuals like Moses Macharia, a former drug dealer and Protestant, expressing deep admiration for the pope's encouraging influence.

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