DP Ruto’s allies miss out on fresh State jobs
Deputy President William Ruto (pictured) and his allies were last night among losers in fresh parastatal and board appointments, as President Uhuru Kenyatta moved to calm his Central Kenya base.The Saturday Standard understands that supporters of the “Kieleweke” team are slated for plum appointments, where tens of them have been tapped to run key State institutions once gazetted as early as today.Supporters of the handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga, including Kanu and Wiper, are among the major beneficiaries of the appointments, which political watchers say may have a bearing on succession politics.
While some are fresh appointments, others are reappointments for fresh terms, according to information obtained by the Saturday Standard.In the changes, trouble seems to loom for rebel MPs especially those in Uhuru’s Mt Kenya backyard, who have aligned themselves with the DP in the so-called ‘Tanga Tanga’ formation, after some of their former political opponents were lined up for plum government jobs.Also in most cases, the positions being filled were once occupied by individuals perceived to be allied to Ruto, piling more political pressure on the DP and his allies in government.Raila, Kalonzo consultedIt is not clear if the DP was consulted on the sharing of the 82 positions but there are indications that former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and former Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka were consulted.
Those slated for plum jobs include former MPs Dennis Waweru (chairman Kenya Investment Authority), Nicholas Gumbo (chair Kenyatta National Hospital Board), Joshua Toro (chair National Irrigation Board) and Frankline Bett (reappointed chair Agricultural Finance Corporation).Others are former MPs Ochieng Mbeo (chair Fish Marketing Authority), Dan Mwanzo (chair Kenya Ferry Service), Jamleck Kamau (chair, Tana and Athi Rivers Development Authority), Shakila Abdala (Child Welfare Society) and Stephen Ngare (chair National Housing Corporation).Nominated MP Maina Kamanda, Waweru and former Jubilee Vice Chairman David Murathe are key members of the “Kieleweke” brigade, opposed to the ascendancy of Ruto to the top seat in 2022. The appointment of Kanu Secretary General Nick Salat as Postal Corporation of Kenya chairperson was announced last weekend, among others. Kabando wa Kabando’s position as chair Local Authority Provident Fund was announced in December.Others slated for fresh appointments is Kalonzo’s ally and former Governor Julius Malombe (chair Kenya Water Towers Agency), Nation Group Editorial Director Mutuma Mathiu (chair Kenya Copyright Board), former Cabinet minister Noah Wekesa (reappointment as chair Strategic Food Reserve Oversight Board) and reappointment of former Machakos County Speaker Bernard Mung’ata (ICDC).Mr Malombe was a Kalonzo ally in the run-up to 2017 poll, which triggered the severing of a long-time political friendship between the former VP and his former party chairman David Musila. Musila and Malombe lost the Kitui Governor seat to Charity Ngilu.
Similar goalsAnother Wiper leader’s ally, former Machakos Women Representative Susan Musyoka, was set to be appointed as member of the Regional Centre on Groundwater Resources, Training and Research in Eastern Africa while former East African MP Peter Mathuki will sit at the Kenya Investment Authority. Mathuki deputised Wavinya Ndeti in their failed 2017 bid to oust Alfred Mutua in the Machakos gubernatorial contest. Wavinya recently got a state appointment at the Kenya Water Institute.Close allies of Governor Mutua — who has been waging an anti-corruption drive campaign, which though delinked from Kieleweke, has been advancing similar goals — among them Munga’ta and Alphonce Kioko, are also lined up for state appointments. Kioko, is slated to chair the Tourism Fund Board.Joyce Ngugi, the widow of former Gatundu South MP Joseph Ngugi and who pulled out of the race for Moses Kuria to gain entry in Parliament, is slated to retain her National Council for Children Services chairmanship for another three years.Former Othaya MP Mary Wambui is slated to be reappointed to the board of Child Welfare Society, while former MP Lucas Chepkitony gets a second term at the Strategic Food Reserve.
Others are Hiram Mwangi (Bukura Agricultural College), Mediamax editor Anderson Waweru (Tana and Athi Rivers Development Authority), Building Bridges Initiative member Adams Oloo (Kenya School of Government), IT specialist Brian Omwenga (Business Registration Service Board), lawyer Kioko Kilukumi (Energy Tribunal) and lawyer Melissa Ngania (HIV Tribunal).The 82 proposed names add to the army of public officials appointed by the Uhuru’s administration in the run up to the 2022 succession race.