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New Kenyan Cabinet Appointees Refuse To Take Office

  • James Butty

Just hours after Kenyan president Mwai Kibaki named his new cabinet, as many as 10 mostly-assistant ministers called media houses in Nairobi to say they were rejecting their appointments. Waihenya Waiphaka is the opinion editor of the East African Standard. From Nairobi, he told English to Africa reporter James Butty that while the ministers have yet to say why they are turning down their appointments, it has been suggested that some were doing so because they were given assistant ministerial positions instead of ministerial. Mr. Waiphaka says others are rejecting their posts because they feel their parties were not given prominent roles in the new government as expected, and others were turning down their posts because they feel their parties were not consulted in advance. Mr. Waiphaka does not foresee bigger trouble for President Kibaki because he says most of the people who have declined their appointments so far are assistant ministers, but he thinks more appointees may follow suit. He says President Kibaki picked his new cabinet from a politically weak position, having lost the constitutional referendum vote on November 21.