By Charles Ngeno
Nakuru, Kenya: The recent appointment of 26 parastatal chiefs by President Uhuru Kenyatta has been dismissed by some political leaders, women and youth from the South Rift.
The leaders described the appointments as skewed in favour of The National Alliance (TNA) of the ruling Jubilee Alliance. They also accused the President of giving the youth and women a raw deal in the appointments.
Led by Narok East Member of Parliament Ken Kiloku and Bomet Women Representative Cecilia Ngetich, the leaders said the appointments did not observe gender balance but was used as an opportunity to reward political cronies.
“The President has totally let down the youth and women of this country who overwhelmingly voted for Jubilee in the last elections. This administration had promised to create jobs for the youth but now they are recalling old men from retirement. It has totally failed to bring that generational change it had promised,” said Kiloku.
He said the President’s decision is not agreeable because it also lacked regional balance. He said the appointments did not reflect the face of Kenya since it rewarded individuals from only few communities.
On her part Ngetich said the youth and women have been handed a raw deal by the President. She wondered why out of the 26 positions only three were given to women and not even one for the youth.
“President Uhuru has betrayed the women and youth. As an afterthought a post was created for Jebii Kilimo as if to appease women.
There is totally nothing new in the way the President has done this and we want to register our disappointments,” she said.
Bomet county Majority Leader Josphat Kirui dismissed the appointments saying it did not reflect the 50:50 basis between TNA and URP.
While pledging total support for the Deputy President, Kirui said the country has many young professionals who can steer parastatals and the country to higher heights.
Konoin Youth Affairs Organising Secretary Hilarious Langat accused the President of claiming to be digital while his actions are analogue.
“We appreciate the role of these old persons but the country is teeming with young, energetic and vibrant youths who are qualified and ready to serve as parastatals chiefs. The President wants to continue with the ‘business as usual’ mode,” said Langat.
He added that they will be seeking audience with the Deputy President to express their dissatisfaction soon.
However, Deputy Speaker, also Sotik MP Joyce Laboso and her Bomet East counterpart Bernard Bett welcomed the appointments though Laboso said it did not reflect a 50:50 sharing.
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She said as leaders from URP they should not be mistaken as demanding for appointment of only Kalenjins but URP members from all over the country.
“URP is a national party and the demands that the party be accorded equal appointments should not be misconstrued to mean that the appointments should go to the Kalenjins,” said Laboso.
Bett expressed optimism that the President will consider the party when he appoints ambassadors.