Kenyan Cabinet in first meeting of the year

February 4, 2010 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 4 – President Mwai Kibaki was on Thursday morning expected to chair his first Cabinet meeting of the year.

Top on the agenda at the State House Nairobi talks will be the ongoing reform process mainly the Constitution review process.

The meeting comes a day after the President prorogued Parliament and announced that the new session would begin on February 23 to debate the new Constitution.

The Cabinet was also expected to discuss the security situation in the country after the seizure of deadly arsenal in Narok that has seen the probe narrow down to military and police officers.

Being the first meeting of the year, the top leadership is also expected to lay the agenda for the country to deal with pressing issues, with insecurity being a major concern for most Kenyans.

The meeting also comes at a time when the US and British governments have withdrawn funding to the Ministry of Education owing to the theft of money under the Free Primary Education (FPE) program.

The US suspended Sh500 million funding which was supposed to be released this year for a five-year capacity building project.  This happened barely a month after the UK’s Department for International Development froze funding to the Ministry of Education over failure to account for Sh100 million.

At the time, the Head of DFID Alistair Fernie said that the withdrawal would affect Kenyan children and asked the government to conduct audits to establish how the money disappeared.

The two foreign governments demanded more accountability from the government and complained of incessant corruption in public offices.

The withdrawal by the main sponsors is a big blow to the country and the Cabinet has the task of dealing with the issue.

Bringing justice to the 2007/2008 post election violence victims and punishing perpetrators of the violence are other issues Kenyans would expect the Cabinet to prioritise.

The possibility of the International Criminal Court (ICC) opening a case against the perpetrators will also occupy the Cabinet, since ICC Prosecutor Moreno Ocampo is likely to get a verdict on his application to open investigations in the matter over the next few weeks.


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