Parliament begins vetting Cabinet Secretary Nominees

Written By: Asha Mwana Khamisi/Franco Kundu
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On pensions Prof Kobia said the decision to increase the retirement age to 60 from 55 was a stop gap measure. The pension is still unsustainable. May be it's time to introduce contributory scheme where an employees give 7% and the gov't 15%
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Parliament Thursday morning started vetting nine new Cabinet Secretary Nominees, with Public Service Cabinet Secretary Nominee Professor Margaret Kobia being the first to be interviewed.

Prof Kobia told the vetting panel chaired by National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi that she believes she is the right candidate for the position considering the transformation work she has done at the Public Service Commission (PSC).

Former Turkana Senator John Munyes who was nominated to head the Petroleum and Mining docket was second to be vetted, followed by Foreign Affairs and International Trade CS nominee Monica Juma who will close the morning session.

The Committee of Appointments will kick off its afternoon session with former Royal Media Service Chief Operating Officer Farida Karoney who seeks to convince the MPs on her suitability to lead the Lands docket.

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Former Meru Governor Peter Munya who was nominated for the East African Community and the Northern Corridor docket will close the day’s vetting exercise by the committee members at 3.30pm.

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NASA MPs chose to stay away from the exercise.

Members sitting in the committee of appointments who all are Jubilee Party members have committed to ensure the vetting is impartial.

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MPs will be interrogating the nominees on integrity, academic and professional backgrounds, after which they have 14 days to approve or reject names.

By the close of business on Wednesday, the Appointments Committee secretariat had received one affidavit and six letters raising issues on some of the nominees.

Thirdway Alliance party leader Ekuru Aukot and Kenya Human Rights Commission chair George Kegoro have also requested to appear before the committee to discuss general issues on the vetting process.

Five other nominees among them Monica Juma for Foreign Affairs, Keriako Tobiko of Environment are expected to appear before the Justin Muturi led committee on Friday.

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Meanwhile, as vetting of nominees for various Cabinet positions led by National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi was underway, a section of women activists held a peaceful demonstration demanding for gender balance.

The demonstrators who converged initially at Uhuru Park’s freedom corner demonstrated along the busy Uhuru Highway bringing transport to a standstill.

Motorists along Mombasa road were briefly stopped to allow demonstrators to cross the road on their way to Parliament Buildings to register their concerns.

The demonstrators waved placards challenging President Uhuru Kenyatta to consider setting aside more seats for women in line with the constitution that guarantees gender balance.

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