Kenya: Outgoing Govt Officials Barred From Foreign Travels

by Oyintari Ben

Prior to President William Ruto’s selections, outgoing Cabinet Secretaries and Principal Secretaries are not permitted to go overseas, hire employees, or make transfers.

The transition from the fourth to the fifth administration has limited cabinet members’ responsibilities to general management and stewardship, according to a circular published by the Head of Public Service, Joseph Kinyua.

According to Mr. Kinyua, current ministers are not permitted to be reassigned or appointed, or to travel outside of Kenya without President Ruto’s consent.

“We want to emphasize that ministerial actions during the transition are confined to general administration and stewardship over the ministerial portfolio,” Kinyua said. “This is in keeping with our increasing constitutional tradition associated with a transition from one government to another,” he added.

The circular therefore instructs state agencies and ministries not to publicize any new policies prior to receiving presidential approval. Additionally, the National Treasury has prohibited the Cabinet chiefs from making payments over Sh50 million without first receiving approval and verification from them.

When nominations for the Cabinet and senior executive positions are finished, according to Mr. Kinyua, the transition phase will be over.

The circular states that the current tenure of Cabinet secretaries and Principal Secretaries “will, therefore, be reiterated that the tenure of Cabinet secretaries and Principal Secretaries currently in office will only lapse on appointment and swearing-in of a successor Cabinet secretary or Principal Secretary as the case may be by the Head of State and Government; or upon a reorganization of Government by H. Excellency the President that affects a particular docket.”

After returning from the 77th UN General Assembly in New York, President Ruto is anticipated to complete the appointment of his Cabinet.

The Public Service Commission has extended the Principal Secretaries application deadline to next Tuesday.

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