President Ruto sacks entire cabinet after anti-government protests

President William Ruto's address to the nation

President William Ruto has sacked all cabinet secretaries and Attorney General Justin Muturi in response to youth-led anti-government protests.

Only Prime Cabinet Secretary Musalia Mudavadi, who is also Foreign Affairs Cabinet Secretary, was spared.

"Upon reflection, listening keenly to what the people of Kenya have said and after a holistic appraisal of the performance of my Cabinet and its achievements and challenges, I have, in line with the powers given to me by Article 152(1) and 152(5)(b) of the Constitution and Section 12 of the Office of the Attorney-General Act, decided to dismiss with immediate effect all the Cabinet Secretaries and the Attorney-General from the Cabinet of the Republic of Kenya except the Prime Cabinet Secretary and Cabinet Secretary for Foreign and Diaspora Affairs," said President Ruto in televised announced.

Dr Ruto said he would involve other political stakeholders in the process of reconstituting his Cabinet.

In the meantime, the President said, government operations will continue under the leadership of Principal Secretaries and other relevant officials.

"I will immediately engage in extensive consultations across different sectors and political formations, with the aim of setting up a broad-based government that will assist me in accelerating and expediting the necessary, urgent and irreversible, implementation of radical programmes to deal with the burden of debt, raising domestic resources, expanding job opportunities, eliminate wastage and unnecessary duplication of a multiplicity of government agencies and slay the dragon of corruption consequently making the government lean, inexpensive, effective and efficient," he added.

Dr Ruto on Tuesday announced plans for a "broad-based political arrangement", giving credence to the notion that he may be considering co-opting Raila Odinga's Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) into his beleaguered Kenya Kwanza administration.

President William Ruto delivers his speech at State House, Nairobi.

President William Ruto delivers his speech at State House, Nairobi.

Photo credit: Francis Nderitu | Nation Media Group

The Nation has learnt that the president is toying with the possibility of a "government of national unity" with opposition figures in his administration as part of his way out of the current political crisis triggered by protesting youths who have cornered him and demanded a major shake-up of his government.

It would not be the first time that Kenya has had a government of national unity.

When the late President Mwai Kibaki lost the 2005 referendum to the No camp led by his then Roads minister Raila Odinga, he responded by sacking his entire cabinet.

When he reconstituted it two weeks later, Mr Odinga and his Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) members were left out.

"Following the results of the referendum, it has become necessary for me, as President of the Republic, to reorganise my government to make it more cohesive and better able to serve the people of Kenya," Mr Kibaki said.

“I have directed that the Offices of all Ministers and all Assistant Ministers become vacant. Consequently, the occupants of the said offices cease to hold their respective offices with immediate effect,” he said.