, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 22 – Deputy President William Ruto on Monday directed the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) to guide employment in county governments, to ensure regional balance in all public appointments.
Speaking when he met NCIC officials led by the commission’s chairman Mzalendo Kibunjia, Ruto admitted that the country was facing challenges in dealing with ethnicity but urged NCIC to ensure it is dealt with.
“People should not be rejected on basis of their ethnic background or the region they come from,” he said.
He urged NCIC to embark on active campaigns to educate Kenyans especially county leaders on the importance of ensuring that public appointments do not portray tribal bias.
“There is a serious danger of counties being ethnicised… the commission should provide guidelines so that they are aware of what they are supposed to do,” Ruto added.
While he expressed fears that through devolution the country could “disintegrate into small tribal units” the deputy president advised leaders to ensure that devolution is not translated to mean appointing their tribesmen but should mean hiring people who can deliver whether they come from certain communities or not.
While he admitted that governors and cabinet secretaries were already facing challenges in addressing regional balance in public appointments, he urged NCIC to come up with guidelines and an employment policy that will guide counties in recruitment of county staff.
The NCIC Act states that not more than a third of employment in public institutions should be from one community.
NCIC which is tasked to promote cohesion among the diverse Kenyan communities informed the deputy president that it was facing financial constraints that held back its work.
Kibunjia informed Ruto that the commission was allocated Sh206 million in the current financial year, out of which only Sh15 million was left for programmes.