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Kibati pledges unrivalled leadership

NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 6 – The newly appointed Director General of the Vision 2030 Delivery Secretariat (VDS) Mugo Kibati has pledged to provide unrivalled leadership towards achieving a long term blueprint on the nation’s development.

Confirming his acceptance of a recent presidential appointment, Mr Kibati welcomed the challenge that the new job will bring and termed it an opportunity to serve the country ‘at a most defining moment in its history’.

Prior to the appointment, the 39-year-old was serving as a director of the Kenya Private Sector Alliance (KEPSA) and has remained vocal in advocating policies that support Kenya’s sustained growth and stability.

He also headed Miliki Ventures, providing interim management to companies seeking deep transformation.

While describing Vision 2030 as ‘totally achievable’, Mr Kibati explained that sector-wide commitment will be required to ensure its success. He added that the delivery of the Vision would need confidence and engagement from all Kenyans, noting that the social and political pillars of the Vision underpin economic development but are often overlooked.

As VDS boss Mr Kibati will be tasked with leading the timely implementation of the flagship projects of Vision 2030.

The VDS will operate as a semi-autonomous government agency under the overall guidance of the Vision 2030 Delivery Board and a special Vision 2030 Cabinet Committee chaired by the President, with Prime Minister Raila Odinga as alternate chair.

“I am glad to accept the appointment. It’s an opportunity for me to serve in a challenging yet exciting capacity with a critical bearing on Kenya’s long-term development goals,” Mr Kibati said.

“But I intend to spend the first few weeks just listening to Kenyans. Having spent my entire professional life in the private sector, I will have to take some time appreciating the workings of government. It’s an opening for real integration of the private sector into the development of this country.”

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Born in Nakuru but raised in Mombasa, Mr Kibati started his career in 1991 as an Engineer at the Bamburi Cement Company (Lafarge) in Mombasa before leaving the country to pursue further studies in the United States. 

While abroad, Mr Kibati gained a wealth of experience in diverse roles in the developmental, business and technical worlds, including the World Bank’s Multilateral Guarantee Investment Agency, the United States Senate in Washington DC, the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) in Geneva, Switzerland and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s (MIT) Program on Internet and Telecommunications Convergence.

After graduating from MIT in 1999, Mr Kibati joined the management of Lucent Technologies at the Murray Hill headquarters in New Jersey for four years before returning to Kenya to join East African Cables Limited. 

His stint at the helm of East African Cables cemented his reputation as a business strategist and reformer. Under his leadership, the company increased its revenues from Sh480 million to over Sh3 billion while profits rose from Sh15 million to almost Sh600 million.

The market capitalisation of the company increased from Sh600 million to Sh9 billion in less than three years. When he resigned in mid-2008 to pursue other opportunities, the company had just been classified as a “blue chip” company on the Nairobi Stock Exchange.

In addition to a B.Tech, Electrical Engineering from Moi University in Eldoret, Mr Kibati has an interdisciplinary Masters degree from MIT. While at MIT, he studied the nexus between business strategy, technology and policy at the Harvard Business School/Kennedy School of Government. Mr Kibati also obtained an MBA (Business Finance) from the George Washington University in Washington DC, and studied European Union Economics at the Oxford University. He was recently named a Young Global Leader by the World Economic Forum.

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