Cabinet reshuffle in the offing
President Uhuru Kenyatta is preparing to reshuffle his Cabinet soon, this is according to the Daily Nation.
Interviews with multiple sources in government on Sunday pointed to an imminent reshuffle, with the President said to be unsatisfied with the pace at which the agenda of the Jubilee government was being executed.
Mr Kenyatta and Deputy President William Ruto are said to have taken stock of their achievements over two years and were convinced that a reshuffle was key to the delivery of their promises to Kenyans.
The President’s off-the-cuff remark during Labour Day celebrations on Saturday also lent credence to an imminent reshuffle. He said he was tired of talking and would now focus on issues that would benefit Kenyans.
“You will no longer hear me talk. You will see actions on issues affecting the lives of ordinary Kenyans,” he said.
Moments before he spoke, Central Organisation of Trade Unions Secretary-General Francis Atwoli had asked the Head of State not to bring back to the Cabinet the secretaries who had been suspended to pave the way for investigations into corruption allegations.
They are Mr Kazungu Kambi (Labour), Mrs Charity Ngilu (Lands), Mr Michael Kamau (Transport), Mr Davis Chirchir (Energy) and Mr Felix Koskei (Agriculture).
Some sources said the President would wait until the expiry of the 60 days he gave the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) to conclude investigations into corruption allegations against the ministers and other top officials.
Others said the reshuffle would come soon after the President ends his retreat at the Sagana State Lodge.
“A Cabinet reshuffle is imminent, there is no doubt. There are certain things the President and his Deputy are working on,” one source said.
The sources said the ministers and principal secretaries who had been suspended for alleged corruption were unlikely to return to the Cabinet.
Last week, the President relieved Mr Francis Kimemia of his duties as Secretary to the Cabinet and appointed the then Interior Affairs PS, Ms Monica Juma, to the post.
He also moved Major-General (Rtd) Gordon Kihalangwa from the Immigration Department and appointed him to replace Ms Juma.
Mr Kimemia was among top officials questioned by the EACC but he denied involvement in corruption.
On the same day Mr Kimemia was dropped, the President also appointed former Justice minister Eugene Wamalwa the Water and Irrigation CS, arguing that “water was the driver of agricultural development”.
This meant the President had expanded the Cabinet by one slot.
He also appointed Mr Nzioka Waita as head of the Delivery Unit. Mr Waita will monitor the flagship projects initiated by the Jubilee administration, including the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR), the free laptops for schools and the Galana Irrigation Scheme.
On Sunday, sources said Mr Kenyatta’s disappointment with his Cabinet and the need for political inclusivity are likely to influence the next appointments.
Already, notable individuals have been approached by the Presidency’s advisers over possible appointment to the Cabinet to replace “tainted” CSs.
According to one source, the President has issued a total of 23 directives to his Cabinet since winning the 2013 presidential election. However, none of them has been implemented.
The directives, related to projects meant to increase food production, improve housing and upgrade slums, provide laptops to pupils in public primary schools, generate 5,000 megawatts of power to reduce the cost of electricity, boost security, tarmack more roads and build the SGR, whose completion is scheduled for 2017.
Sources also said that on various occasions, Cabinet secretaries have invited the President to launch several projects when, in reality, they had not taken off.
“These are some of the things that have made the President to think twice about how the Cabinet is helping him drive the Jubilee agenda,” one source said.