Saturday, June 18, 2005

TASK Launch

I went for the official launch of The Actuarial Society of Kenya (TASK) at 6 PM at the Hilton on Thursday.

Rare Air
One thing about actuaries is that they are among the brightest people in the world. I only know two people in the profession – one is my (very wealthy) landlord and another is a classmate of mine from primary school who rarely finished below no. 1 in class (tops in all subjects except Kiswahili for 8 years).

There are only 5 qualified practicing actuaries in Kenya, but they expect to have ten by next year. There are also about 600 Kenyan students taking actuarial sciences studies in Kenya and abroad. JKUAT and the University of Nairobi both have programs and some their students attended the cocktail – and Kenya is the only country in East & Central Africa that offers actuarial study programs. Most of the guests were sharp and well dressed, like some over-grown (or ex) Strathmore boys & girls.

The Hilton
Society officials said that revival of the Society had been planned over a four month period, but planning for the event had take only ten days – leading to the selection of the Hilton. This is only the second cocktail event I have attended at the Hilton. After registration, guests lined up for a complementary drink – soda or juice. At other Hotels, the complementary drink could be anything, and many guests use that as an opportunity to order the largest, most potent drink that can think of, as they don’t intend to pay for anything afterwards. Today there was a stocked bar next to the soda/juice table, with a bartender and cash register at the ready. My glass of juice tasted, and smelt of the can it no doubt came from. Still I sipped it all evening, as a second glass would have cost 180 shillings ($2.40). Also notice how there’s no air conditioning in the building, leading to more drink sales to thirsty guests.

The Event
- The Society’s motto is “turning risk into opportunities”
- One task the Society needs to do is update Kenya’s mortality (life expectancy) tables: The country still uses UK tables from the 1940’s
- The Chairman of the Society explained that the Society will seek to create awareness for the profession: actuaries are not just needed at pension and insurance firms, but by all large corporations and especially in the government.
- Will seek to come up with a Kenyan exam for actuaries
- You can e-mail the Society at

Kenya’s Growth Rate
Minister Nyongo announced that he will lead a statistical briefing session on Thursday next week (June 23) where statisticians will explain how Kenya’s controversial 4.3% growth rate was arrived at.

No Wi Fi
On the internet the Hilton is listed as one of two Wi Fi locations (i.e. with wireless 802.11b Internet access) in Kenya, the other being Jomo Kenyatt Airport. However Hotel staff say it is not yet available.

And why not convert Kenyans Unlimited into the Weblog Society of Kenya.


jon said...

Looking for heating and air conditioning info I found your post. I agree!

jon said...

While searching for new room air conditioner info for my house I stumbled onto your blog. I totally agree!



Related Posts with Thumbnails