PSC deals blow to ‘big names’ as they are dropped from CAS shortlist

CAS applicants

From left: Swarup Mishra, Ann Kananu, David Musila, David Osiany, Elizabeth Ongoro and Jimmy Angwenyi. They are among applicants whose dreams to land plum CAS positions were thwarted by the PSC after they failed to make the shortlist.

Photo credit: Nation Media Group

They were optimistic to land Chief Administrative Secretary (CAS) jobs after being in the cold for quite a bit but their hopes have been dashed by the Public Service Commission (PSC).

Politicians in both President William Ruto and Raila Odinga camps suffered a major setback after their applications for the plum CAS jobs were thrown out by the PSC.

Some of the individuals who were left out in the shortlisting had shown interest in various elective seats but lost at the party primaries or General Election while others are people who served in the same position during the former President Uhuru Kenyatta administration.

Analysis by the Nation on the list of applicants released by PSC has shown that the likes of David Musila, Ann Kananu, Stanley Kiptis, Dennis Waweru, Elizabeth Ongoro, Ferdinand Waititu, Jimmy Angwenyi, Janet Ong’era, Swarup Mishra, Moses Lessonet, Kiema Kilonzo, Jane Chebaibai, Rose Nyamunga, Agostinho Neto, Tecla Tum and Daniel Tuitoek.

The list of applicants also included David Ohito, David Osiany, Betty Adera, former ambassador Paul Kibiwott Kurgat, John Mosonik, Josphat Kabeabea, Ken Obura, Lily Koros, Lily Ng’ok, Martin Otieno Ogindo, Tabitha Mutemi, Zachary Ayieko, Eric Simiyu Wafukho, Alex Mburi Mwiru among others.

The PSC had initially released names of 224 shortlisted for the CAS jobs from a list of 5,183 applicants but it then expanded to 240 candidates. This means that 16 persons were added.

The agency on Wednesday cancelled an earlier list of short-listed candidates for the position of CAS and issued a new, expanded one.

The commission said it had reviewed the number of short-listed candidates “in order to increase inclusivity with regard to gender, the marginalised and minority groups, the youth and persons living with a disability...”

Dr Mosonik, a former Mining and Petroleum chief administrative secretary, had sought the UDA party’s ticket for the Bomet governor’s seat, a move that pitted him against Governor Hillary Barchok.

Dr Mosonik accused Governor Barchok and current Senator Hillary Sigei of allegedly masterminding the nomination malpractices to skew the vote in their favour and he applied for the CAS job but never found his way to the list of shortlisted candidates. He had also applied for Principal Secretary and was not lucky either.

Mr Musila vied for Kitui gubernatorial seat on Jubilee Party after getting the backing of former governor Charity Ngilu but lost to Wiper’s Julius Malombe in the August General Election.

After Dr William Ruto outsmarted Azimio boss Raila Odinga in the polls, Mr Musila is among the leaders from Ukambani region together with former Makueni governor Kivutha Kibwana who have shifted their allegiance and now supporting Kenya Kwanza administration and now coalescing around former United Democratic Alliance (UDA) chairperson Johnson Muthama who remains the President’s point-man in the region.

Ms Kananu who also applied for the CAS but was not shortlisted is the immediate former Nairobi governor. She was implored by both Mr Kenyatta and Mr Odinga to shelve her ambition in favour of Polycarp Igathe who was later floored by Johnson Sakaja.

Mr Waweru would be still a Consul General despite Azimio losing to Kenya Kwanza had he taken up the role at Kenya’s Mission in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) when he was appointed by Mr Kenyatta but now his ambition to serve as CAS has hit a snag after failing to appear in the shortlist.

The former Dagoretti South MP (2013-2017) decided to decline the ambassadorial role to focus on his election where he lost to UDA’s John Kiarie after garnering 22,773 votes while the current legislator got 26,394 votes. He is now one of the allies of the former Head of State who have since pledged their loyalty to President Ruto despite their Party leader saying that he is firmly in Azimio.

The likes of Mr Waititu, Ms Chebaibai, Mr Kabeabea and Ms Ng’ok have since landed State appointments - the Nairobi River Commission, Bomas of Kenya, Anti Counterfeit Authority and Kenya Industrial Estates respectively.

Already the High Court suspended the decision by President Ruto to appoint the former Kiambu Governor to the Nairobi Rivers Commission following an integrity suit.

In the interim order issued by Justice Hedwig Ong’udi, the court suspended the swearing-in of Mr Waititu as a member of the commission or any other public office.

The orders will remain in force pending the determination of a suit filed by the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) and Transparency International.

Mr Angwenyi despite having applied for the CAS has been the longest-serving MP and he was floored by UDA’s Japheth Nyakundi. Mr Nyakundi got 11,834 votes while Mr Angwenyi garnered 8,260 votes.

During the Jubilee administration, the likes of Mr Osiany, Mr Obura, Mr Ayieko, Mr Wafukho and Mwiru were CASs for Trade, East African Community, Energy, National Treasury and Lands respectively.

Apart from politicians who campaigned for Dr Ruto and are yet to be rewarded, there are also individuals who were part of his economic advisory councils like Dr Irene Asienga, Dr Robert Muriithi, Dr Crispin Bokea and longtime political advisor of the President, Dr Joseph Magut who once served as Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Germany. They are set to land ambassadorial jobs.