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Uhuru is new Finance Minister

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 23 – President Mwai Kibaki has appointed Uhuru Kenyatta to be the Minister for Finance.

In the cabinet appointments released from State house on Friday Amos Kimunya made a comeback to the Cabinet as Trade Minister. Franklin Bett was appointed the Minister for Roads while Beatrice Pauline Kones will deputise Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka at the Ministry of Home Affairs.

A statement from the Presidential Press Service said the appointments followed consultations with Prime Minister Raila Odinga. “These changes and appointments take effect immediately.”

Mr Kimunya was forced to resign in July after the passage of a humiliating Motion of No Confidence in Parliament over the handling of the sale of the Grand Regency hotel.

Roads Minister Kipkalya Kones and Assistant Home Affairs Minister Lorna Laboso were killed in a plane clash last June.

John Michuki who has been acting at Treasury returned to his Environment and Mineral Resources Ministry, while Chris Obure who has been handling the Roads portfolio retains his Public Works docket.

The President appointed a commission of inquiry to investigate the Grand Regency saga but the report was not made public. The Parliamentary committee on Finance, Planning and Trade had indicted Kimunya of wrong doing and recommended that he be barred from holding any public office.

Meanwhile, both the President and the Prime Minister appointed Justice Minister Martha Karua her Water counterpart Charity Ngilu to the Permanent Committee on Management of Grand Coalition Affairs bringing the membership to 14.

The committee was formed last week, but there was prompt uproar over the lack of inclusion of women leaders in it.

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Other members of the committee include Vice-President Kalonzo Musyoka and Ministers Musalia Mudavadi, Uhuru Kenyatta, George Saitoti, William arap Ruto, Moses Wetangula, Amason Kingi, Ibrahim Elmi, Chirau Ali Mwakwere and James Orengo.

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