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Moses Kuria’s successes, controversies at Trade Ministry

Former Cabinet Secretary in the Ministry of Investments, Trade, and Industry Moses Kuria has outlined what he says are his achievements since his appointment into that office.

Kuria who moved to the Ministry of Public Service, Performance, and Delivery Management in a mini-reshuffle announced by President William Ruto said he was confident he would move on to his new responsibilities with his head high.

Part of the achievements he shared was that he implemented exports and investments promotion levy to discourage unnecessary imports.

“He introduced a pipeline of 26 mega deals from the Gulf region and Indonesia, negotiated investment of Sh450 billion from Afriexim bank in e-mobility, special economic zones, and export processing zones, pushed Kenya’s joining of the Pan African payment and settlement system, and finalized economic partnership agreement with the European Union.”

In the 12 list of achievements, Kuria bragged of hosting twice the African Continental Free Trade Area Trade Ministries Council in the same year and launching county aggregation and industrial parks in 16 counties plus initiating the procurement process in other 21 counties.

However, his tenure was not devoid of a few controversies.

In June 2023, Kuria expressed strong criticism towards the media in a forthright outburst in Murang’a. He referred to gathered journalists as prostitutes after Nation Media Group investigated and published a cooking oil scandal involving his office.

Mr Kuria was also missing in action when President William Ruto met investment partners from the United States of America at State House Nairobi.

The US trade representative Katherine Tai had cancelled two scheduled meetings with Mr Kuria with sources revealing that Ambassador Tai labelled him as an extremist because of his vulgar remarks against individuals and institutions.

He was supposed to attend the Trade and Investment Framework Agreement (Tifa) council meeting alongside his East Africa Community and Arid and Semi-Arid Lands counterpart Rebbeca Miano but he was reportedly locked out and is said to have been labelled an ‘unwanted’ host.

During a live TV session on Citizen TV, Mr Kuria found himself in a challenging situation after asserting that oil prices were lower in Ruiru, his home town, compared to other regions in the country.

A journalist presented evidence to counter his claim, showcasing a live segment from a supermarket in Eldoret.

Caught off-guard, Kuria, known for his sharp retorts, swiftly suggested that the news panel should conduct a similar investigation in Ruiru to validate his claim.

“Let’s go now to Ruiru, send a crew there, we are here for two hours, what’s the hurry for? Si uende Ruiru…” he said.

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