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Why Kindiki’s Interior Ministry is now weaker than the Matiang’i-era docket

Following an Executive Order issued by President William Ruto on Monday, the once powerful Interior Ministry now appears to have diminished considerably in stature.

The Executive Order No. 1 of 2023 detailed the reorganization of government under President Ruto’s new administration. In the Executive Order, the president issued guidelines that will see his deputy, Rigathi Gachagua, and the Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi perform different functions.

However, what caught the eye of the public were the changes in the Ministry of Interior that is headed by Prof Kithure Kindiki. Previously, the Ministry was called the Ministry of Interior and Co-ordination of National Government under Executive Order No. 1 of 2020 (Revised) which was issued by former President Uhuru Kenyatta.

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The Ministry was by then under the leadership of Dr Fred Matiang’i who at the time was considered the most powerful Cabinet Secretary.

The Ministry, as per the Executive Order, will now be known as the Ministry of Interior and National Co-ordination. Other than that, the President has transferred the oversight and co-ordination in the delivery of national priorities and flagship programmes functions from the Interior Ministry to the Office of the Prime Cabinet Secretary.

Hence, Prof Kindiki will wield less power as compared to his predecessor.

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When the former Head of State issued the order ahead of the General Election, it was seen as a move to reduce the functions of his deputy, whom he had accused of focusing on his political ambitions instead of helping him to deliver the Big Four Agenda to the people.

The move saw Dr Mataing’i helping the president in launching many government projects.

The roles that Dr Matiang’i played saw him being referred to as Mr Kenyatta’s right man, having more powers than the former Deputy President.

On the contrary, Prof Kindiki will only oversight the internal security affairs.

The Interior Ministry, in liaison with the office of the Prime Cabinet Secretary, will also oversee the implementation of National Government Policies, programmes and projects.

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