John Lonyangapuo, Brown Ondego among Ruto's fresh state appointees

william ruto, john lonyangapuo

Then-Deputy President William Ruto (left) is pictured with then-West Pokot Governor John Lonyangapuo, during a meeting with leaders from arid and semi-arid regions of Kenya, at his home office in Karen, Nairobi, on April 30, 2019.

Photo credit: Charles Kimani | DPPS

What you need to know:

  • Prior to the August 2022 General Election, Prof Lonyangapuo was one of Dr Ruto's fiercest critics, with his party supporting Azimio la Umoja One Kenya honcho Raila Odinga, only for him to switch camps after the Kenya Kwanza Alliance (KKA) took over the country's leadership.

John Lonyangapuo, the former governor of West Pokot County and Kenya Union Party (KUP) leader, is the latest beneficiary of lucrative state jobs, following an appointment on Friday by President William Ruto.

Prof Lonyangapuo has been appointed the chairperson of North Rift Valley Water Works Development Agency (NRVWDA) for a period of nine months, and the appointment of David Chumba Chemweno revoked.

Prior to the August 2022 General Election, the former county chief was one of Dr Ruto's fiercest critics, with his party supporting Azimio la Umoja One Kenya coalition honcho, Raila Odinga, only for him to switch camps after the Kenya Kwanza Alliance (KKA) took over the country's leadership.

Prof Lonyangapuo recently announced that KUP had cut ties with Azimio and the party has since declared support for President Ruto’s administration.

He accused Azimio of making unilateral decisions that do not represent the views of all partner parties, while describing the coalition as the "greatest threat to democracy, the rule of law and national cohesion in our nation’s recent history". Pokot South MP David Pkosing, the party's secretary-general, disagreed with him.

Prof Lonyangapuo, who defended the governor seat on a KUP ticket, was trounced by President Ruto's ally, Mr Simon Kachapin, who vied under the United Democratic Alliance (UDA). Mr Kachapin garnered 86,476 votes against Prof Lonyangapuo's 84,610.

Appointed alongside Prof Lonyangapuo was Mr Emilio Mugo, the former chief forest conservator of the Kenya Forest Service (KFS). He has made a comeback to the government as chairperson of the National Environmental Management Authority (Nema) for three years.

Mr Mugo was among the KFS senior managers who were sent on compulsory leave in 2018 for allegedly abetting illegal logging. 

Others were Patrick Nyaga (Senior manager, Finance and Administration), Dedan Gatiki (Assistant Chief Conservator of Forests, North Rift) and Boniface Simiyu (Deputy Chief Conservator of Forests, Plantations and Enterprise), Francis Kariuki, (Assistant Chief Conservator of Forests Eastern Conservancy, Embu) and Cosmas Ikiugu (Assistant Chief Conservator of Forests, Central Highlands).

Former Kisauni MP Ali Menza Mbogo was appointed chairperson of the Lapsset Corridor Development Authority for three years.

Mr Mbogo was on February 10 appointed non-executive chairperson of Kenya Tsetse and Trypanosomiasis Eradication Council. He was also one of the 242 persons interviewed by the Public Service Commission for the position of chief administrative secretary (CAS).

He will work alongside former Lamu Senator Anuar Loitiptip, who was also interviewed for the CAS job. Others were Shadrack Tulon, Abdikahiya Maalim, Nasra Ibrahim Ibren and Jeremiah Apalia Lomari.

Prof Raphael Munuve, chairperson of the Presidential Working Party on Education Reforms, was appointed chairperson of the Konza Technopolis Development Authority for three years.

Other appointments

Also in the latest state appointments is Mr Odinga’s ally-turned-foe Odoyo Owidi, who has been appointed to the Lake Victoria South Water Works Development Agency from March 10 to June 4. The appointment of Mr Owidi, the former chair of the Lake Basin Development Authority board, followed the revocation of Mr Daniel Omino's appointment.

Mr Brown Ondego, the former Kenya Ports Authority managing director will serve as chair of the board of the Kenya Civil Aviation Authority for three years starting March 10, while top plastic surgeon Stanley Khainga will chair the Kenya Medical Practitioners and Dentists Council.

Prof Khainga will work with Prof Stephen Ogendo, Dr Elizabeth W. Gitau, Dr Timothy Theuri Kabaiku, Moses Kiptanui, Sarah Bonaya and Dr Rose Jepchumba Kosgei at the board.

Dr Rispa Wapkhulu was named chairperson of the Kenya Literature Bureau and will work with Doris Shianda, Edise Ndirangu, Leisangoo Maselino, Michael Ombaba Monarid and David Kinyor Kimeto, while Francis Gichaba  landed the role of chairperson of the Kenya Tourism Board.

Other State parastatals which got new board members included the Local Authorities Provident Fund, with Patrick Muchoki, Ruth Charity Wanyonyi, Barbara Kawira Japan, Robley Otieno Ngoje, Samwel Kariuki Maina and Christine Kibet appointed by Treasury Cabinet Secretary Njuguna Ndung’u

Lydia Wanjiku Kariuki, Meymuna Osman Gabow, Perez Jepkorir, Harrison Njoroge Mwaura, Langat Kipkoech Leonard landed board member roles in the Kenya National Trading Corporation (KNTC) while Qalicha Guyo, Annistain Kemunto Mogaka, Rishad Amana, Lilian Apadet and Ezekiel Kibor were appointed to the Kenya Maritime Authority (KMA) in the same capacity.

Health CS Susan Wafula appointed Dr Joseph Wafula Mutunga, Thomas Kipkoskei Cheruiyot and Catherine Kathure Samwel as members of the board of directors of the Kenyatta National Hospital while Transport CS Kipchumba Murkomen appointed Muhumed Abdi Mohamed as chairperson of the Kenya Railways Corporation.

The New Kenya Co-operative Creameries Ltd got Rukia Rashid, Col. (Rtd.), David Kipkurui Samoei, Hilda Wangari Gichuku, Geoffrey Noah Angwenyi and Elisha Biwot as its new board members.