Massu by Jolie Detta and TPOK Jazz (Lyrics and Translation)

Introduction Massu and Jolie Detta

In 1986, Franco for the first time ever made a recording with a female artiste. Her name was Jolie Detta, a daughter of a Greek father and Zairean mother. The tall and breathtakingly gorgeous Detta was relatively unknown up to this point. She had previously sung with CHOC stars.

Detta performed two songs on this album namely Massu and Layile, both composed by Franco. The album catapulted Detta to instant fame. In 1986 she accompanied Franco on a tour of Kenya where she performed to the delight of Kenyan fans for whom Massu and Layile were huge hits. She would later leave to join Anti Choc where she sung duets with Bozi Boziana.

Song Video

Translation of Massu



See the Translation of Layile here
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Nike and IOC encourage corruption in Kenya sports

Nike, one of the world’s premier sporting goods companies, has a running contract with various Kenyan sports organizations, most notably NOCK (National Olympic Committee of Kenya) and AK (Athletics Kenya). The contract stipulates that Nike will pay bonuses depending on how many medals Kenya wins at various meets most notably the Olympics and the Commonwealth games.

As a result, from the Nike and NOCK contract running between 2013 through to 2020, NOCK is supposed to have received $87,500 (about Sh8.84 million) for the 2014 Glasgow Commonwealth Games and $140,000 (Sh14.14 million) for Rio Olympic Games performance.

Logically one would think that the bonus money should go to the athletes. They are the ones who spend endless hours training hard, running up and down hills for hundreds of kilometres each week, rehabbing injuries, performing wind-sprints, endless press-ups and other physically demanding exercises. When it comes to preparing for a race, athletics is the most demanding sport. The runners literally run themselves into the ground when training. So logically you would think that it is they who would pocket the bonus money right? Instead that bonus money in its entirety goes to NOCK members.

NOCK chairman Stephen arap Soi explained the situation recently.
“I think we can only take blame for not having explained on our contract with Nike about the performance benefits,” said Soi. “The bonuses are not for the athletes but NOCK .” said Soi.

The situation where athletes run themselves into the ground to prepare for the Olympics then see the officials pocket the money is rather comical yet unfortunate. Comical because Arap Soi and the rest do not do anything to help the athletes prepare for the games. In fact Arap Soi likely knows nothing about each athlete’s training program.

Yet Nike sees it fit to continue giving NOCK the bonuses instead of giving it directly to the athletes. It amounts to a bribe from Nike to NOCK officials to enable Nike to continue being the kit sponsor for the Kenyan contingent.

Nike also gives NOCK uniforms, shoes and training equipment worth Ksh 126 million each year since 2013. Very little of that makes it to the runners it is meant for. Most of it is sold by NOCK officials on the black market. Some of it ends up with the relatives of NOCK officials as the case during the Olympics when Kipchoge Keino’s daughter in law posed on twitter with said uniforms while the athletes in Rio were complaining of not having enough uniforms and shoes to train with.

The IOC (International Olympic Organization) is perhaps the worst culprit when it comes to encouraging corruption. They are fully aware of the corrupt activities that happen within their affiliates. But they will not prevent it. And worse still when a government tries to take action to remedy the situation, they will quickly come to the defence of their affiliates and threaten the country with a ban.

Protesters expressing their disdain for IOC and their penchant for protecting corrupt officials

Protesters expressing their disdain for IOC and their penchant for protecting corrupt officials


Kenyan running legend, Kipchoge Keino is always quick to remind the Kenyan government of the sanctions that would befall the country from the IOC should any action be taken against corrupt officials.

“(The) IOC are waiting for me to be put in (jail) and, when they put me in, Kenya will be banned. We will not take part in the next Olympics,” threatened Keino.

Eliud Kipchoge’s training program

Eliud Kipchoge, the gold medalist at the 2016 Olympic marathon, makes it look very easy when he runs over 42 km. In fact he makes it so easy which might explain why Arap Soi and others have no compunction about stealing bonuses that should be going to athletes.

Here is Kipchoge’s weekly training program:

210 km runs every week at high altitude (8000 feet above sea level)
13 hard three-minute moderate sprints with one minute steady between each day
A 20-mile run at a shade more than five minutes per mile up and down hills

Note that Kipchoge’s daily training starts as early as 5:30 am each morning while the pot bellied NOCK members are still fast asleep. And after all this hard work, Arap Soi et al would have you believe that is they and not the athletes who are literally training themselves into the ground each day.


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Before Nicholas Bett and Tumuti, there was Daniel Kimaiyo

Two Kenyan hurdlers, Boniface Mucheru Tumuti and Nicholas Bett have recently captured the imagination of athletics fans all over the world. Bett won the gold medal at the 2015 world athletics championships and in the process set a new Kenya record at 47.79. A year later, Tumuti won the silver record at the Rio Olympics and lowered the Kenya record to 47.78.

But Bett and Tumuti are not Kenya’s first set of world class hurdlers. Before them, there was Daniel Kimaiyo who was a dominant figure in the late 1970s. Kimaiyo was All Africa games champion in 1978. In that final, he beat Ugandan legend John Akii Bua who had been an Olympic gold medalist years earlier. And in 1979 he won the gold medal in the Africa Athletics championships.

But his greatest achievement came when he won the gold medal at the 1978 commonwealth games. In the process he beat Gary Pascoe of England who had been European and Commonwealth games champion in 1984

Race Video

Kimaiyo was also an excellent relay runner. He won gold medals with the Kenya 4 X 400m team at the 1978 All Africa games, 1978 Commonwealth games and 1979 Africa athletics championships. As such he left each of these tournaments with two gold medals. In the 1978 Commonwealth games final, he received the baton from Washington Njiri, and ran a stormer of a second leg, thus extending the lead that had been built by Njiri. Bill Koskei who ran the tthird leg, was impeded by a British runner and this fell back to third place before passing the baton to Joel Ngetich. It was a photo finish but The Brits were disqualified for impeding Kenya who were then awarded gold

Race Video

Other Kenyan 400m Hurdlers
Eric Keter was another excellent Kenyan hurdler. He won the gold medal at the 1991 All Africa games and 1993 African championships. He also reached the finals of the world athletics championships in 1991 and 1993.

Gideon Yego was a silver medalist at the 1990 Commonwealth games in the 400m hurldes. Three years earlier at the 1987 All Africa games, he won a silver medal in the 110 metres hurdles.

Shem Ochako, a product of Cardinal Otunga Mosocho, won a silver medal in the 400m hurdles at the 1987 All Africa games.

At the 1994 Commonwealth games, Gideon Biwott and Barnaba Kinyor won silver and bronze medals respectively, finishing behind Zambian legend Samuel Matete.

After this, Kenya went through a dry period as Athletics Kenya began a misguided policy to disregard the sprints and focus only on distance events. Luckily the policy seems to have been reversed as Kenyan sprinting is re-emerging from the doldrums.

In 2016, in addition to Bett and Tumuti, Kenya also has Haron Koech who is another up and coming hurdler. He on the bronze medal at the 2016 African athletics championships and reached the Olympic finals in 2016.

The 400m hurdles is very similar to the 800m in terms of its endurance requirements. Since Kenya has produced numerous world class 800m runners, it stands to reason that the country would also produce excellent 400m hurdlers. What impedes Kenyan hurdlers is the lack of proper technical guidance.


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Mary Keitany completely, utterly dominant in New York

Kenyan marathon ace Mary Keitany won the 2016 New York marathon by an incredible three minutes and 35 seconds. She also became the first woman in 30 years to win three consecutive NYC Marathons. On this day, Keitany broke away from the rest of the field at the halfway point and they would not see her again. Indeed she ran the rest of the race alone, accompanied only by Police on motorcycles.

Sally Kipyego, running in only her second marathon, finished an impressive second.


1 Mary Keitany KEN 2:24:26 5:31
2 Sally Kipyego KEN 2:28:01 5:39
3 Molly Huddle USA 2:28:13 5:40
4 Joyce Chepkirui KEN 2:29:08 5:42
5 Diane Nukuri BDI 2:33:04 5:51
6 Aselefech Mergia ETH 2:33:28 5:52
7 Lanni Marchant CAN 2:33:50 5:53
8 Neely Gracey USA 2:34:55 5:55
9 Sara Hall USA 2:36:12 5:58
10 Ayantu Dakebo Hailemaryam ETH 2:37:07 6:00


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Mark Korir wins Frankfurt Marathon

It was a decisive win for Mark Korir in the 2016 Frankfurt Marathon. Korir won in 2:06:48, well ahead of compatriots Martin Kosgey and Cyprian Kotut who finished second and third respectively.

Korir, who won the 2015 Paris Marathon, made his move at the 35km mark and no one had a response.
“When the pace dropped after 35-k I put the pressure on – and won,” said Korir, who’s 2:06:48 performance was the year’s eighth fastest. “After having to drop out in the Paris Marathon this spring I was very disappointed. I wanted to redeem myself and I really enjoyed this race.” he said.

Korir also participated in the 2015 world championships, finishing 22nd.


1 3 Korir, Mark (KEN) M  2:06:48
2 8 Kosgey, Martin Kiprugut (KEN) M – 2:07:22
3 4 Kotut, Cybrian Kimurgor (KEN) M – 2:07:28
4 9 Curtis, Robert Mark (USA) 30 –  2:11:20
5 2 Woldegeberel, Tadesse Tola (ETH) M –  2:11:52
6 6 Achamie, Birhanu Addisie (ETH) U23 –  2:12:19
7 5 Gebretsadik, Weldu Negash (NOR) 30 –  2:12:20
8 11 Naert, Koen (BEL) M –  2:12:27
9 12 Masai, Moses Ndiema (KEN) 30 –  2:13:23
10 15 Cuneaz, Rene (ITA) M –  2:15:32
1 F3 Molisa, Mamitu Daska (ETH) 30  2:25:27
2 F7 Tola, Fate (GER) WF  2:25:42
3 F5 Jebet, Sarah (KEN) 30  2:27:07
4 F23 Flanagan, Lindsay Marie (USA) WF   2:29:28
5 F20 Purdue, Charlotte Lucy (GBR) WF   2:30:04
6 F21 Strähl, Martina (SUI) WF  2:30:58
7 F9 Tola, Helen Bekele (ETH) 30  2:31:27
8 F10 Stockhecke, Mona (GER) 30  2:31:30
9 F26 Barlow, Tracy (GBR) 30 –  2:32:05
10 F25 Vilcinskaite, Milda (LIT) WF –   2:34:48

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Wanjiru sets Amsterdam record as Kenyans occupy top 8 positions

Daniel Kinyua Wanjiru was the surprise winner of the 2016 Amesterdam marathon. In the process he set a new personal best and a course record for the Amsterdam marathon which is a IAAF Gold Label Road Race in 2:05:19.

Following Wanjiru were seven other Kenyans home as Kenya occupied all the top 8 positions and 11 of the top 15 positions. Four Kenyans dipped under the 2:06 mark including the pre-race favourite Sammy Kitwara who finished second.

The 24 year old Wanjiru made his his marathon debut in Frankfurt two years ago, finishing seventh in 2:08:18. He looked set to improve on that in Amsterdam as he had set PBs earlier this year at 5000m, 10,000m, 10km and the half marathon, clocking times of 27:43 and 59:20 in the latter two disciplines.


1 Daniel Wanjiru 2:05:20
2 Sammy Kitwara 2:05:45
3 Marius Kimutai 2:05:47
4 Laban Korir 2:05:54
5 Ezekiel Chebii 2:06:06
6 Felix Kandie 2:06:25
7 Geoffrey Kirui 2:06:27
8 Bernard Kipyego 2:06:45
9 Mule Wasihun 2:07:19
10 Abera Kuma 2:07:48
11 Sammy Korir 2:08:18
12 Wilson Chebet 2:08:19
13 Amos Kipruto 2:09:08
14 Khalid Choukoud 2:11:23
15 Dereje Tesfaye 2:13:39


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Pacemaker Talam in shocking victory in his debut

When 21 year old Festus Talam, entered the 2016 Eindhoven marathon, he was not expected to win. He was not even expected to finish. Firstly he had never run a marathon before. He had only previously run in half marathons where his personal best was a modest 1:01:48.
Secondly, in this race, he was enlisted as a pacemaker and instructed to take the field through the 35 km mark at 2:06 pace. Talam kept his end of the bargain and fully earned his pacemaker money: By the 30 km mark, Talam was leading, closely followed by defending champion Stephen Chebogut and Marius Kipserem. But the rest of the field could not handle the tempo and fell back.

Talam maintained his composure over the last seven kilometres to win in impressive fashion. “I’m over the moon with this win. There were some favourites to win this race and I’m delighted that I was able to beat them.” said the unheralded Talam

Director Edgar de Veer praised his talent: “We knew that Festus had this in mind. Marc Corstjens had given him permission to race on and try his luck after 35 kilometres. Ultimately, he was the strongest today. Finishing in 2:06 in your debut marathon is a fantastic springboard to the international top.”


1 Festus Talam Kenia 2:06:26
2 Marius Kipserem Kenia 2:08:00
3 Nobert Kigen Kenia 2:09:19
4 Duncan Maiyo Kenia 2:09:25
5 Dejene Debela Gonfa Ethiopië 2:10:13
6 Richard Mengich Kenia 2:10:39
7 Stephen Chebogut Kenia 2:10:59
8 Deriba Robi Ethiopië 2:11:00
9 Emmanuel Bett Kenia 2:16:10
10 Harm Sengers Eindhoven Atletiek 2:19:48


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Florence Kiplagat succesfully defends Chicago title

While the men’s race was run at a slow and deliberate pace, the women’s race was run at intervals of torrid and slow. By the halfway point, the leading pack had been reduced to Florence Kiplagat, Edna Kiplagat, Valentine Kipketer, Purity Rionoripo and Yebrgual Melese.

It was defending champion Florence Kiplagat who made a move at the 30 km mark and no one had a response.
“I was feeling confident,” she said. “I told myself that if they were going to catch me they were going to have to catch me at the finish line.
“When I came here I wanted to win because I wanted to win this race twice in a row. It wasn’t easy, but I was confident.”

Flo Kiplagat is one of the most consistent marathoners having finished at the top three in six of the last seven marathons she has run in. She is also a former world cross country champion and former world half marathon champion.

Edna Kiplagat, a former world champion finished second.

1 Kiplagat, Florence (KEN 02:21:32
2 Kiplagat, Edna (KEN) 02:23:28
3 Kipketer, Valentine (KEN) 02:23:41
4 Rionoripo, Purity (KEN) 02:24:47
5 Melese, Yebrgual (ETH) 02:24:49
6 Baysa, Atsede (ETH) 02:28:53
7 Burla, Serena (USA) 02:30:40
8 Mierzejewska, Agnieszka (POL) 02:32:13
9 Crouch, Sarah (USA) 02:33:48
10 Gray, Alia (USA) 02:34:00


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Kirui stages massive career revival in Chicago

Coming into the 2016 Chicago marathon, not much was expected from Abel Kirui. After winning the world championships in 2009 and 2011 and the Olympic silver medal in 2012, Kirui’s career had hit a rough patch. He never finished better than fifth in any marathon since his Olympic silver medal.

But Kirui who is an Administration Policeman, had to dig deep to win in Chicago. With 10 kilometres to go Sunday, Kirui was in a four man battle with compatriots Gideon Kipketer, Paul Lonyangata and defending champion Dickson Chumba. With three kilometres to go, the battle had been reduced to Kirui versus Dickson Chumba. Kirui made his move with 800m left, digging deep to beat Chumba by three seconds.

Kenyans occupied the top five positions.

1 Kirui, Abel (KEN) 02:11:23
2 Chumba, Dickson (KEN) 02:11:26
3 Kipketer, Gideon (KEN) 02:12:20
4 Lonyangata, Paul (KEN) 02:13:17
5 Sambu, Stephen (KEN) 02:13:35
6 Ayele, Abayneh (ETH) 02:13:52
7 Fukatsu, Takuya (JPN) 02:13:53
8 Estrada, Diego (USA) 02:13:56
9 Gokaya, Koji (JPN) 02:14:34
10 Kibet, Elkanah (USA) 02:16:37


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Good progress but long way to go for Harambee Stars

Many Harambee stars fans are elated and rightfully so after the recent spate of good results. In the last four matches, Kenya has beaten Congo-Brazzaville at home, registered two away draws against Tanzania and Zambia and beaten the Democratic Republic of Congo away in Kinshasa. The positive results are a relief for funs who for eight years during the Mohamed Hatimy era and the Sam Nyamweya era have had to endure mediocre performances by the national team. Finally the team is getting closer to fulfilling its potential.

On a positive note also, the team is playing several high quality friendly matches against good sides. This enables the team to gain cohesion and is something that was missing from the previous FKF regimes.

Excellent Defence

The one Harambee stars department that has stood out in recent matches is the backline and defensive midfield area. Congo DR thoroughly dominated possession and had much better buildups as did Zambia. But the defensive line with David Owino Calabar, Jockins Atudo, Aboud Omar, Eric Ouma, Brian Onyango as well as defensive midfielders Anthony Akumu, Victor Wanyama and Ismail Gonzalez all stood tall in the three matches. Though Congo had most of the possession, their moves were disrupted before they could threaten Boniface Oluoch in goal. As a result, Congo created no real scoring chances. It is fair to say that Kenya’s defensive solidity is what has anchored the recent results.

Poor Buildup

Harambee stars have been unable  build moves by stringing several passes together. Some of this can be attributed to lack of cohesion. Some of it can be attributed to the technical staff. But a significant portion of it is due to lack of the calibre of players with excellent first touch, close ball control and the ability to string accurate one times passes as is demanded by modern football. This can only come with proper youth development.

The only Kenya player who fits this mould is Francis Kahata. To have an effective midfield, you need several players with Kahata’s passing skills and close ball control. However Kahata though very good on the ball, contributes little on the defensive side of the ball. The ability to pressure opposing players is a necessity in modern football where players are measured based on how many kilometres they cover on the field.

Harambee stars look most dangerous on breakaways. Wingers like Ayub Timbe and Paul Were have been able to use their speed on the flanks to either score goals or create dangerous situations that result in goals. But the same players have more of a striker’s mentality and are not known for being good passers or even good crossers.

Further to that, Kenya lacks players who can play themselves out of tight situations using their close ball control. All these aspects: accurate passing, crosses, ball control, vision etc are products of a sound youth development scheme. This is completely missing in Kenya today. Some clubs have a semblance of a youth team but it does not amount to structured youth development.

The attack

This author has been watching Kenya football for three decades now and can safely conclude that Michael Olunga  is the sharpest striker Kenya has produced in the last three decades. You would perhaps have to go back to the 1970s to find a sharper striker in William Ouma “Chege”.

Olunga is not as talented as Dennis Oliech. But Olunga needs much fewer chances to score. Oliech in his prime was a superb dribbler and super-quick off the mark. He was a handful for defenders to deal with. He would create numerous chances but would miss too many. That is why in France, Oliech was mostly deployed as a winger where he could wreak real havoc on opposing defenders. Olunga often gets only one or two chances and scores. He has quick reflexes and a sixth sense for positioning himself in the right spot. Thats why he makes a good target man.

Against DR Congo, Olunga was starved of the ball. Hardly any passes came his way. But he was still able to score by positioning himself in the right place to pick up the rebound. And when the ball came his way, he reacted very rapidly, trapping the ball and firing with his trusty left foot. It was virtually the only real chance that came his way and he scored.

If Olunga were to play with an effective midfield that can get him the ball, he would score in every Harambee stars game. Ayub Timbe seems more interested in scoring rather than crossing the ball even when he is in an impossible angle. The same applies to Paul Were. Perhaps Olunga would be more effective playing with Clifford Miheso who is a good crosser as well as Kahata if he has players who can cover his defensive frailties.


That Kenya needs better player development cannot be gainsaid. The two best passers Kenya has produced in recent years are Peter Opiyo and Francis Kahata. Both are products of the Thika youth development scheme having joined Thika United as early as age 12. This kind of youth development is very rare in Kenya. Yet it is what the country needs.

Coach Okumbi is on the right track. But he needs to work harder on gaining cohesion, build up and supplying the attack with quality passes, something that is compleley missing right now.

As for the current FKF regime, they are a breath of fresh air compared to the Nyamweya and Hatimy eras. And they have recovered from the poor start when unproven players were fielded against Guinea Bissau perhaps costing Kenya a place at the next AFCON.


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