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Azimio declines to approve FIVE of Ruto’s cabinet nominees after the vetting process

Azimio declines to approve FIVE of Ruto’s cabinet nominees after the vetting process saying they’re unfit to serve Kenyans.

The National Assembly committee that vetted five of President William Ruto’s cabinet nominees last week is split on their appropriateness as it works against the clock to present its findings by Thursday.

Members of the House Committee on Appointments (CoA) from the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya side are uneasy with former Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa, Mithika Linturi, a former Meru Senator for agriculture, Penina Malonza, a former Meru Senator for tourism, and Zacharia Njeru, a former Meru Senator for lands (Public Service).

Njuguna Ndung’u, a former governor of the Central Bank of Kenya, and a nominee to the National Treasury and Planning docket is encountering opposition as well.

Sources within the Azimio coalition, who did not want to go on record, say five of Ruto’s cabinet nominees are not suitable and that the President should nominate “other suitable Kenyans”.

“These nominees are not suitable to serve in the positions we vetted them for. If the committee will not agree with our view, we shall definitely draft our minority report,” an Azimio member of the committee said.

A minority report or a dissenting opinion by committee members on a matter before them is provided for in the Standing Orders. 

It is basically a protest note by committee members against a decision taken by the majority. The dissenting opinion may be appended to the main report.

Mr. Linturi is facing opposition over his pending cases in court which may affect his suitability.

When he appeared before the vetting committee last week, he said that he had 35 civil cases in court.

Kwanza MP Ferdinand Wanyonyi, a member of the committee, wondered where he will get the time to work given the many court cases he has to deal with.

“He should clear his name first before we consider him for any nomination,” Mr. Wanyonyi said during the vetting.

On the nomination of Ms. Malonza, a majority of the committee members were in agreement that she cannot be the face of Kenya given how she performed during the vetting.

“She is timid and lacks coherence for the docket she has been nominated, which is crucial in marketing the country to the outside world. Her evading of questions during the vetting exercise makes her appointment doubtful,” a committee member said.

During her vetting, committee members said she was not articulate in her answers. At some point, Mr. Wetang’ula told her to avoid skirting around the issues raised by the members.

She was described as lacking the required competence and experience to bring change to the ministry which is critical to President Ruto’s economic recovery agenda.

On the other hand, Prof. Ndungu is held accountable for allowing the Kenyan shilling to fall precipitously when he was in charge of CBK. In 2012, a report by a parliamentary ad hoc committee recommended Prof. Ndung’u be fired for conspiring with financial institutions to generate “abnormal” profits.

Prof. Ndung’u, however, refuted the allegations during his background investigation and said they were a part of a scheme to have him fired from CBK.

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