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Kenya

PM announces cabinet reshuffle

Article published on the 2009-01-23 Latest update 2009-01-23 15:38 TU

Amos Kimonya.(Photo: Reuters)

Amos Kimonya.
(Photo: Reuters)

The Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki, has announced that he is bringing back former Finance Minister Amos Kimunya to his cabinet, despite his resignation last year over allegations of corruption.

Kimunya, who was Minister of Finance between 2006 and 2008, resigned over concerns about the sale of the Grand Regency Hotel in Nairobi to an unspecified group of Libyan investors.

An official inquiry cleared Kimunya of any wrongdoing in November last year, but the findings were never published.

“If you use public money to inquire into the conduct of a minister, the least one would expect, is that that report will be made public, so we would see the merits behind the decision to appoint that particular minister,” said Mwalimu Mati, from the civil society group Partnership for Change.

Interview: Mwalimu Mati, Partnership for Change, Nairobi

23/01/2009 by Billie O'Kadameri

“We don’t get the sense that the government is responding to the needs for transparency in the way that it is conducting its affairs,” Mati told RFI.

In other reshuffling, Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta will take over Kimunya’s old post, while Franklin Bett will become Roads Minister, after the death of Kipkalya Kones, in a plane crash last year.

“Kenyans, generally, have very low expectations of commissions of inquiry. What many Kenyans are saying, is that now we need to start moving towards actual prosecution of actual cases," said Mati.

A statement from the government said the changes would be effective immediately, although some commentators believe the handling of the affair has been irresponsible.

“Really, it is a government, which has no intention of accounting to the public anymore,” Mati told RFI.