House team to vet nominees for diplomatic jobs

Michael Mubea, nominated for Dublin-Ireland. [Standard]

National Assembly is set to vet President Uhuru Kenyatta’s seven ambassadorial nominees.

The president, in a communiqué to Speaker Justin Muturi, has sought the MPs’ approval for his nominees.

Those set to be vetted include Kariuki Mugwe (Abu Dhabi), Peter Katana Angore (Algiers), Michael Mubea (Dublin-Ireland), Flora Karugu (Lusaka-Zambia), Mwende Mwinzi (Seoul-South Korea), Diana Kiambuthi (Stockholm-Sweden) and Njambi Kinyungu (UN-Habitat).

Mubea, the outgoing Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) deputy chief executive officer, will replace Richard Opembe who will move to the Kenyan mission in Madrid, Spain. Severine Luyali headed Madrid before the changes were made.

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The nominees are among the 18 diplomats recently named by the President.

Kenya’s former ambassador to Sweden Purity Muhindi, who had been serving as Director for Africa, will head to Dakar in Senegal, one of the new diplomatic missions opened this year.

“I wish to report to the House that I have received a message from the President conveying his nominations of persons for appointment as ambassadors and high commissioners,” Muturi informed the House last Thursday.

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“The President, having exercised his powers under Article 132 (2) (e) of the Constitution, is now seeking the National Assembly’s approval of the following persons for appointment to the offices of Ambassadors and High Commissioners.”

The Departmental Committee on Defence and Foreign Relations chaired by Kajiado South MP Katoo ole Metito will now be required to vet the candidates and table a report before the House for adoption.

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The vetting team is expected to receive views from Kenyans on the suitability of the candidates.

If approved, and according to tradition, new entrants will have to be trained on diplomatic courtesies, a process that often takes at least 60 days.

Foreign Affairs CS Monica Juma had also announced that the President had approved the promotion and appointment of 15 serving officers to the position of ambassador in the ministry.

They include Lucy Njeri Kiruthu (Geneva, Switzerland), David Kahiro Gacheru (Washington, DC), Stella Mokaya Orina (Vienna), George Orina Morara (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia), Washington Oloo (Doha, Qatar), Joshua Mugodo (Brussels, Belgium), Kennedy Mokaya Gekonde (Kampala, Uganda), Esther Mungai (Berlin) and Hellen Adhiambo Gichuhi (Paris, France, Unesco).

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President Uhuru KenyattaEACCSpeaker Justin MuturiForeign Affairs CS Monica Juma