Being in five regimes and serving under four Presidents is not a mean feat for any civil servant.
It is for this reason that one needs to read former Head of Public Service and Secretary to the Cabinet Francis Kirimi Muthaura's memoir, A Moving Horizon, which was launched on Thursday evening in Nairobi.
Public Service Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria said Muthaura was an inspiration to many.
“Personally, I grow out of inspiration from the story of his life. I have been in government for only one year and I wonder how can you serve in it for 50 years?” said Kuria.
He added: “You know, being a worker in government mostly is a thankless job. You must have a reason every morning to wake up to go to work. A higher calling and for me am intrigued by the many years Amb. Muthaura has served.”
He said the book should offer leaders an opportunity to reconcile, get peace and work together for the betterment of the country.
“Amb. Muthaura was not a divisive or controversial person and this book launch gives us an opportunity to forgive those who have wronged us and forgive those we have wronged,’’ said Kuria.
Former Public Service Cabinet Secretary Prof Margaret Kobia said despite Muthaura holding powerful positions, he served with humility and is highly respected both in the public service and the private sector.
Kobia said she learned from Muthaura standards to set in public service performance.
“This resource book is a must-read by public servants, as it demonstrates how the role of hard work, commitment to ethical values, patriotism, character of integrity can contribute to prideful productivity and successful realisation of personal, national and organisational goals,” said Prof Kobia.
She added: “This memoir is a good read for parents and the youth so as to recognise that, no matter your background, it is possible to have a successful satisfying and rewarding career in public service. Reading this book, one is left feeling, that Muthaura was born to serve with explicit loyalty, dedication, patriotism and humility.”
Public Service Principal Secretary Amos Gathecha said the book details many reforms initiatives rolled out during his tenure at helm of public service.
“He repositioned the public service as central player in handling service delivery to citizens and continuously looked for ways of improving services by keeping citizens to public service by ensuring that all decisions resolve around how to impact Wanjiku,” he said.
Former Meru Governor Kiraitu Murungi said Muthaura has been his friend and advisor and a selfless, hardworking and committed leader.
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“He has worked tirelessly to transform Kenya into a united, peaceful and prosperous country. We shall remember you for many things but mostly for transformation of the Kenyan civil service, the performance contracting, Vision 2030, LAPSET corridor and Coalition Government,” he said.
Muthaura, in his speech, emphasised on the need for ethics in public service, saying a government can be as good as its public service.
He said when they took over the government with Kibaki, the GDP was USD19 billion and when he left it was USD62 billion.
“When Uhuru left, it was USD103 billion and you can see where the country is, we are on another level and if we continue with the momentum, we can eliminate slums in the country and do away with hunger from Kenyans and the only way we can succeed is through consistency and focus through our vision,” Muthaura said.