Inside Uhuru's exit package as Kinyua team takes charge

President Uhuru Kenyatta. PHOTO | JOSEPH KANYI | NMG

President Uhuru Kenyatta, who is set to leave office at the end of constitutional two terms, will receive a host of hefty retirement benefits, including a fleet of luxury cars, a fully-furnished private office and dozens of workers later this year.

After serving two terms as Kenya's fourth president, Mr Kenyatta will hand over the symbols of power to his successor and start enjoying his retirement.

President Kenyatta must step down after serving the constitutional maximum of two five-year terms.

Ahead of his expected retirement, the Assumption of Office of the President Committee held its inaugural meeting on Friday.

Committee’s chairman, Joseph Kinyua, while addressing the press from Harambee House, said the date of the swearing-in of the president-elect will be declared a public holiday. He said the mandate of the committee would be triggered once the electoral commission formally announces a president-elect.

Mr Kinyua laid out the role of the team as to facilitate the handing-over process between the outgoing president and the president-elect. It will also organise security, personnel and facilities as needed for the president-elect.

The committee will also facilitate the briefing of the president-elect by various public officers and organise the swearing-in ceremony of the new leader.

As for the outgoing President Kenyatta, the law entitles him in his retirement to two personal assistants, four secretaries, four messengers, four drivers and bodyguards pushing his soon-to-be personal office and home workers to 34 under the scheme funded by taxpayers. The aides will be seconded by the government.

They will include press secretaries and security officers paid for by the State.

President Kenyatta will also be entitled to four cars, including two limousines and two Sports Utility vehicles that are replaced every four years.

He will also enjoy a monthly house allowance of Sh300,000, fuel allowance (Sh200,000), entertainment perks (Sh200,00) and Sh300,000 for utilities like water and electricity.

The president will be entitled to a fully furnished office, aides, two new limousines and two new four-wheel drive motor vehicles and other perks such as house, fuel and entertainment allowances as well as Medical cover.

He will be entitled to a lump-sum payment or golden handshake of gratuity of one year's salary for every term served. President Kenyatta will also be entitled to a monthly pension of 80 per cent of the salary he got in his last month in office. The official salary of a sitting president is set at Sh1.44 million.

The former president’s health is also considered as he has a full medical cover that allows him to seek treatment both locally and abroad.

In addition, the insurance will be extended to his wife Margaret Kenyatta.

The Salaries and Remuneration Commission (SRC) is the agency with the constitutional mandate to fix the salaries, allowances and retirement benefits of all State officers.

The retirement benefits have in the past come under sharp criticism, given the country is grappling with a bloated public wage bill amounting to an earlier estimate of over Sh500 billion per year even as millions of citizens continue to live in abject poverty.

Retirement benefits of the retired presidents have come under sharp focus, especially in the past couple of years when allocations increased by large margins, even as the government insisted that it had put in place austerity measures to deal with a growing public sector wage bill.

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