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Economy

MPs clear Betty Maina and Mutahi Kagwe for Cabinet posts

MPs supported the appointment of Mutahi Kagwe
MPs supported the appointment of Mutahi Kagwe and Betty Maina for Cabinet posts. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

The National Assembly has cleared Betty Maina for appointment as the Cabinet Secretary for Industrialisation and Enterprise Development. The move now paves the way for her swearing-in as a CS.

President Uhuru Kenyatta is set to preside over the swearing -in of Ms Maina, the outgoing principal secretary for Trade and Industrialisation, alongside former Nyeri Senator Mutahi Kagwe who is set to take over as Health Cabinet Secretary. Mr Kagwe will replace Cecily Kariuki, who was moved to the Water Ministry.

Ms Maina takes over from Adan Mohamed who was moved to the Ministry of East African Affairs.

The House on Wednesday evening approved the report of the Committee on Appointments that vetted the two nominees. It also commenced debate on the nomination of six principal secretaries who will take over various ministries once approved by lawmakers. The report on the vetting of Mr Kagwe and Ms Maina shows that the outgoing PS’s net worth stood at Sh117.5 million. Mr Kagwe had listed his total net worth as Sh667.8 million.

Ms Maina told the committee chaired by National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi that she earned a salary of Sh9.7 million from the State Department for Industrialisation in 2019.

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She had earned another Sh10.7 million in 2018 from the ministry. In 2016, when she worked at the State Department of the East African Community, she earned Sh12.3 million.

At the Kenya Association of Manufacturers where she worked before joining the government, Ms Maina received Sh15.2 million in salary and gratuity in 2015.

Ms Maina disclosed that she earned a further Sh3 million from consultancy in 2015 and Sh160,000 in 2014 when she served on the boards of the Anti-Counterfeit Agency and Laikipia University. She said the rest of her income comes from farming.

The Public Officer Ethics Act requires all State officers to submit their wealth declaration forms once every two years.

Section 26 of the Act requires the officers to submit their declarations together with those of their spouses and dependent children under the age of 18 years.

The full financial disclosure is meant to allow the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission to detect and prevent corruption when top public servants are serving in office.

MPs supported the appointment of Mr Kagwe and Ms Maina, saying they were qualified to handle their respective dockets.

“Both Mr Kagwe and Ms Maina demonstrated immense knowledge and they are qualified to hold the Health and Industrialisation dockets.

“We want them to quickly settle and address the issues they said will be priority including reforms at the scandal hit National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF), Aden Duale, the Leader of Majority said.

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