Kibaki whips Cabinet into shape

March 19, 2009 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, Mar 19 – President Mwai Kibaki has told Cabinet Ministers to their face that he will fire any disgruntled member of his government.

Sources said that the President used a cabinet meeting at State House Nairobi on Thursday to rally unity and collective responsibility within the coalition government.

This comes just two days after the Head of State in a swift departure from his disinterest in public debate, moved to assert his authority by sternly warning those in government to stop publicly criticising it.

Without mentioning names, President Kibaki said he was angered by ministers who had been complaining about the Grand Coalition, without offering any solutions.

“If you are a minister and you are dissatisfied with the government you either quit, be quiet or I will show you the door,” the President said while on a two day tour of Nyanza Province.

His sentiments were seen as a precursor to impending sackings or realignment in cabinet, considering that none has taken place since the formation of the Grand Coalition Government in 2008.

Under the National Accord, a power sharing deal signed between the President Kibaki’s Party of National Unity (PNU) and the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM), the President and Prime Minister Raila Odinga would have to consult with each other before sacking a minister.

The PM has not publicly expressed such frustrations, although a number of his ODM ministers have grumbled about being short-changed in the distribution of Civil Service jobs.

At the meeting the Cabinet also reviewed the problems facing Pan Paper Mills Limited, which has temporarily closed down. The Cabinet directed that the Ministry of Finance consult with other creditors in order to find a solution on the way forward.

The Cabinet was also briefed on the decisions, which were reached at during the bilateral meeting between Kenya and Uganda, over the demarcation of the border between the two countries.

It was agreed that Ugandan security forces should be withdrawn from the Migingo Island and that fishermen from both countries be allowed to freely fish along the Island.


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