President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday announced changes in his government that saw a reshuffling of some government departments from one ministry to another in an Executive Order dated August 22.
Among departments that have been moved is the Irrigation docket that has been dogged by controversy over suspicious payments for construction of dams.
As a result of the changes, Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri saw the irrigation docket moved from his ministry to the water docket.
“There is compelling need to orientate the scope and mandate of various ministries, State departments and State Agencies (MDAs) to expedite the ongoing implementation of the transformative vision for a better Kenya espoused as the Big 4 Agenda,” read the order.
The President also effected some changes on the Presidential Delivery Unit (PDU) domiciled at State House under Chief of Staff Nzioka Waita, which he reassigned to the Ministry of Interior under Cabinet secretary Fred Matiang'i.
Waita has been in charge of the PDU, which was tasked with monitoring the progress of the government’s flagship projects. It has been instrumental in articulating the President’s policies, as well as offering a buffer in instances where the government comes under criticism from the public.
That task has now been transferred to government spokesperson Col (rtd) Cyrus Oguna.
In effect, the President also merged two State departments - Water, Irrigation and Sanitation are now under one ministry, while the Immigration department, now renamed State Department for Interior and Citizen Services will be under Dr Matiang'i.
However, the President did not announce a substantive CS in the National Treasury docket to replace Henry Rotich who was last month charged with graft in connection with the controversial Sh63 billion multi-purpose Arror and Kimwarer dams scandal.
The office is currently held by the Labour CS Ukuru Yatani in an acting capacity.
The president justified the changes, saying they will help improve efficiency of delivering the mandate of his office.
“My administration is committed to enhancing efficiency, transparency, accountability and operational autonomy through a governance structure that ensures rapid delivery of public services to Kenyans in every part of the Republic,” said Uhuru.