Public Service Commission fights to keep CAS slots after court ruling

Amb. Anthony M. Muchiri, Chairperson, Public Service Commission. PHOTO | SILA KIPLAGAT | NMG

The Public Service Commission (PSC) has defended plans to hire Chief Administrative Secretaries by President William Ruto’s administration, terming it constitutional.

In its court filings, the commission says its decision to advertise the post for CAS is procedural and the court lacks powers to hear the legal dispute.

Responding to a case filed in court by the Law Society of Kenya challenging the constitutionality of the creation of the office of CAS, the commission denied allegations that the new office increases the financial burden to the taxpayer stating that there is no duplication of roles between the position of CAS and Principal Secretaries.

The commission states that the holders of the office of CAS that was previously created during the tenure of former President Uhuru Kenyatta are still in office and earning salaries as budgeted for in the current financial year.

“For these reasons, there will be no new wage bill as the bill for the offices has been in existence since 2018,” says the commission in court through its chairman Simon Rotich.

On allegations that the High Court had declared the proposed office unconstitutional, Mr Rotich says the court only found that it was the process of establishing the office that was unconstitutional.

“Having considered the High Court judgment the commission noted that the court did not declare the office itself unconstitutional but only found the process establishing the office unconstitutional,” said Mr Rotich.

He adds that the functions of the proposed office do not violate any provisions of the constitution or legislation.

“There are no similar offices in the public service therefore the establishment of the office would not occasion unfair competition for staff among public bodies. Additionally, the position would be advertised and all persons in both the public and private sector who meet the qualifications would have an equal opportunity to apply for the job,” said Mr Rotich.

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