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The military man carrying Nairobians’ hopes

The appointment of Major General Mohammed Abdallah Badi as the director of the newly created Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) has further cemented perception on President Uhuru Kenyatta’s penchant for appointing military and intelligence officials to critical institutions facing a crisis.

Mr Kenyatta appointed Maj. Gen. Badi, who was the senior director officer in charge of Kenya Air Force staff training at the National Defence College [NDC], as the director general of the NMS.

Prior to his posting at the NDC, he served as the base commander in charge of Moi Air Base after promotion to the rank of brigadier in 2014.

Before Uhuru’s announcement on the creation of NMS and Badi as its director general, expectations were rife that NDC commandant Lieutenant General Adan Mulati will be picked to head Nairobi management team.

NMS is expected to take over the governance and administrative duties of Nairobi, which shadow governor Mike Sonko surrendered to the state after failure to run the city, something that left the provision of critical services disrupted. Badi will be expected to crush cartels that have held the city at ransom.

He only trusts military officials

The president has previously made appointments that have lent credence to the perception that he only trusts military officials with crucial offices.

Kenya Defence Forces and National Intelligence Services training places great emphasis on values including discipline and integrity, and the two institutions appear to have earned a position of trust in Mr Kenyatta’s administration.

In December last year, Uhuru appointed NIS assistant director in charge of border control frontier Mr Nicodemus Musyoki Ndalana as the regional commissioner for North Eastern.

The president picked Ndalana to replace Mohamed Birik who was recalled to Harambee House after he was presumed to have failed to tame terrorism activities in the region.

Other former military and NIS officials handpicked by Uhuru include Inspector General of police Hillary Mutyambai, Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission [EACC] CEO Twalib Mbarak, Director of Immigration Services Alexander Muteshi and Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji.

Mutyambai succeeded a former NIS man Joseph Boinnet who was the first NIS officer to move to mainstream security docket and later credited with restoring the relationship between NIS and police, which led to the decimation of terror attacks in the country.

Haji, Mbarak and Muteshi were all serving as deputy directors at NIS before their appointments. Mbarak had served with military intelligence before moving to the civil intelligence agency.

Muteshi replaced Maj. Gen. [rtd] Gordon Kihalangwa who was appointed as the Defence PS before he was later moved to the state department for public works.