Uhuru To Fix Cabinet, Fire 30% PSs

PRESIDENT Uhuru Kenyatta is preparing a major reorganisation of government as he prepares the ground for a second term bid.

Apart from sacking non-performing Cabinet Secretaries and Principal Secretaries, the President has also tasked a team of close confidants to start working on his re-election campaign.

“Initially, he wanted to dissolve the entire Cabinet and set up a fresh one, but that view has changed because not all ministers have failed. The Head of State will therefore get rid of deadwood based on the performance targets he gave them,” said a source familiar with the plan.

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It is understood that at least one-third of the Principal Secretaries will also be sent packing in upcoming changes in government.

The President will also appoint new boards of directors and chairpersons of state corporations as part of re-energising his government.

Almost halfway through his first term, Uhuru is said to be looking at cleaning up his government by getting rid of non-performers as well as preparing to appease areas that did not vote for Jubilee in 2013.

The changes, according to insiders, will be rolled out in the coming weeks as the President awaits the conclusion of corruption investigations that have affected more than 150 of his officers.

Yesterday, the Public Service Commission invited applications for Principal Secretaries without indicating the number of vacant positions.

Those wishing to apply for the posts have until April 27 to do so and will get a five-year contract if successful.

Last week, Uhuru formed the Ministry of Water and Irrigation and nominated Eugene Wamalwa to be the Cabinet Secretary.

In the changes last Friday, the President also promoted Interior PS Monica Juma to the Secretary to the Cabinet post without naming her replacement.

Four PSs are currently on suspension following the President’s directive that those adversely mentioned in a corruption report released three weeks ago step aside.

The four PSs who are on suspension are Nduva Muli (Transport), Mutea Iringo (Defence), Patrick Omuita (Mining) and James Teko (Water).

Five Cabinet Secretaries – Charity Ngilu (Lands), Michael Kamau (Transport), Kazungu Kambi (Labour), Davis Chirchir (Energy) and Felix Koskei (Agriculture) – also stepped aside.

The EACC has already indicated that it will be taking some of the individuals to court in the coming weeks, with 41 cases touching on the CSs and PSs.

According to insiders, Uhuru and Deputy President William Ruto are likely to make the changes even before the cases are concluded.

This, they say, will include the creation of a new ministry to being the total number to 20 out of the 22 allowed by the constitution.

Already, Francis Kimemia, who was the Secretary to the Cabinet and was suspended alongside the rest, has been sacked, despite the ongoing investigations.

Uhuru is also expected to use the opportunity to consolidate support in areas where Jubilee did not get many votes in the last election.

The President has said that he will be seeking re-election in 2017 and though opinion pollsters have placed him in a favourable position, he is seeking to a decisive majority.

His win against Cord’s Raila Odinga in 2013 was challenged in the Supreme Court, despite achieving the prerequisite 50-per-cent-plus-one vote and avoiding a runoff.

– the-star.co.ke

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