NAIROBI, Kenya, Feb 8 – Public Service Cabinet Secretary nominee Margaret Kobia says President Uhuru Kenyatta was justified in forming the new position of Chief Administrative Secretary.
Speaking during her vetting by the Committee on Appointments on Thursday, Kobia stated that the Head of State acted within the law and that she was consulted prior to the formation of the new position.
She explained that the post was created to alleviate the huge work load of Cabinet Secretaries and says it will ensure they perform their duties more effectively.
“The Constitution is very clear. It has said that the President can establish any office in the public service. It does not even say at job group A or V. That means that he has a latitude in consultation and recommendation of the Public Service Commission,” she said. “In the matter under consideration of Chief Administrative Secretary, the consultation and justification were done.”
She stated that Chief Administrative Secretary will be responsible in helping CSs coordinate running of affairs in respective ministries.
“Justification was done, looking at the previous administration, how Cabinet Secretaries were overwhelmed by what was in their table and it was thought that if we can have that level just below the Cabinet Secretary, who can only perform delegated functions by the CS, then you bring efficiency in the ministry. If the CS cannot be able to attend some meetings, he can do it by delegation,” she explained.
Kobia stated that during her watch while in office, anyone found misappropriating funds will be dealt with according to the law.
She emphasized that monies within her docket will be only used for intended purposes.
She also said that while in office, she will put in place he controls and accountability measures to ensure funds under her care are safe and properly utilized.
“I have never worked in an institution where funds have been misappropriated. So I am sure I will have those strong internal controls, accountability mechanisms so that should that happen under my watch whoever is implicated will be dealt with by the law such that a good statement is made,” she said.
She further stated that she will look specifically into the matter of the Youth fund as there is a feeling that a lot of money is being used in seminars and workshops instead of reaching them.
“Right now the Youth Fund is on course, of course it is not enough. When I went round, a lot of youth do not know the procedure of accessing it but whatever money that comes my way in the ministry for the youth will be used for the intended purpose,” she said.
Earlier, she had stated that during her tenure in office, she will seek to find ways of reviewing the promotion criteria of public servant to help in motivating them.
Kobia stated that there will be annual reviews and a system in place to ensure workers in a particular cadre get promoted after a period of time and explained that this will ensure efficiency in service delivery and increased morale within the public service sector.
She also expressed confidence that she is the right person for the job as she brings honesty and credibility.
Former Turkana Senator John Munyes who has been nominated to head the Petroleum and Mining docket will be second to be vetted while Foreign Affairs and International Trade CS nominee Monica Juma will close the morning session.
The Committee of Appointments chaired by the National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi will kick off its afternoon session with former Royal Media Service Chief Operating Officer Farida Karoney who seeks to convince the MPs on her suitability to lead the Lands docket.
Former Meru Governor Peter Munya who has been nominated for the East African Community and the Northern Corridor will close the day’s scrutiny exercise by the committee members at 3.30pm.