In Summary
  • Among the appointments that had provoked heated debate was that of gadfly 2013 presidential candidate Abduba Dida as chairman of the CDF board, and Mr Francis Muthaura as chairman of the Lamu Port Southern Sudan-Ethiopia Transport (Lapsset) board.
  • Mr Ruto also said the President should not be criticised for getting only two out of more than 50 appointments he has made so far wrong.
  • With regard to the appointment of Mr Muthaura to head Lapsset, Mr Ruto said the decision was made bearing in mind that Mr Muthaura played an important role in setting it up.

Deputy President William Ruto Wednesday admitted that President Uhuru Kenyatta was misadvised in making some appointments that contravened the law.

Reacting to a question on the recent appointments of parastatal heads that have sparked criticism, Mr Ruto said “hard questions” will be asked to those who advised the President to approve them.

“(This) should not have happened,” he said when he appeared on Citizen TV’s morning talk show, Cheche. “We will be asking them very hard questions.”

Among the appointments that had provoked heated debate was that of gadfly 2013 presidential candidate Abduba Dida as chairman of the CDF board, and Mr Francis Muthaura as chairman of the Lamu Port Southern Sudan-Ethiopia Transport (Lapsset) board.

The gazette notice appointing Mr Dida said he would hold the job from tomorrow until September 9. It also revoked the appointment of Ms Jennifer Barasa.

Opposition leaders criticised Mr Dida’s appointment, saying the position required vetting by Parliament. Other leaders criticised Mr Muthaura’s appointment, arguing that the position should have been given to a youthful candidate. There were also murmurs among some URP legislators who claimed that Rift Valley had gotten a raw deal in the appointments.

But speaking in Kericho later in the day, Mr Ruto, who is also the URP leader, said: “We cannot give all the jobs in government to two tribes alone... Our major aim is to enhance unity.”

He criticised Rift Valley MPs who had complained about Mr John Mututho’s appointment as head of the anti-drugs agency, Nacada.

“We have given you so many jobs and some are still complaining that John Mututho is the chairman of Nacada. What do they want? I don’t understand,” he said.

Mr Mututho’s initial appointment was revoked because the law had not been followed. He was later re-appointed after the process was regularised.

Mr Ruto’s statement that the President could have been misadvised is bound to turn the spotlight on some of Mr Kenyatta’s key advisers on legal matters who include Attorney General Githu Muigai, Solicitor General Njee Muturi and State House constitutional and legal affairs adviser Abdikadir Mohammed.

Said Mr Ruto: “In the case of Mututho, the advice given to him was not correct because the process of appointing the chair of Nacada requires a certain process….Dida’s appointment also required the approval of Parliament.”

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