NAIROBI, Kenya, Jan 7 – The National Standards Council has formally inaugurated Eva Oduor as the Managing Director of the Kenya Bureau of Statistics (KEBS) three weeks after the government confirmed her appointment.
Oduor has been acting in the same position for three months, immediately after the exit of her predecessor Joseph Kosgei.
She emerged the best out of the over 70 candidates interested in the position in an appointment that ended a two year search of a person to head the standards agency.
“As a board we wish her well, and we do expect her to ensure that Kenya has goods and services that meet and even exceeds the international standards,” said National Standards Council, Dr Karanja Thiongo.
During the inauguration that was presided over by Industrialisation Permanent Secretary Dr Karanja Kibicho, the chairman described Oduor as a career lady, with undoubted integrity and diligence.
The new MD has been working at KEBS for over 30 years, and has since risen to occupy several senior positions. Just before her appointment, Oduor was the director in charge of standards.
In her address, Oduor pledged to transform KEBS from a profit making organisation to an institution which delivers the best of service.
She also emphasised that team work is necessary for the body to deliver its mandate of ensuring the safety of all Kenyans.
“It is an onerous task to be the MD of the Kenya Bureau of Standards because a lot is expected, but it is not an impossible task, but with the support of the national standards which appointed me, I am sure that we shall take KEBS to greater heights”, she said of her three year tenure.
However, her appointment has been opposed by the Kenya Association of Manufacturers (KAM) which feels that she does not qualify.
in a press briefing in December 2011, KAM vice chairman Polycarp Igathe expressed dismayed at Industrialisation Minister Amason Kingi’s decision to appoint Oduor saying she does not meet the minimum integrity threshold as outlined in chapter six of the constitution.
Igathe who is also the chairman of the KAM’s Standards Committee complained that the appointing procedure was conducted in a hazy manner adding that it was meant to serve political interests of certain influential figures more than Kenyans.
He argued that KAM was not represented in the board as envisaged in law and thus the outcome of the vetting process was not legally binding.
The association was pushing for the position to be re-advertised.