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Kenya: Uhuru envoys report for duty as Wario, Ekai stay behind

Diplomats appointed by President Uhuru Kenyatta last year have reported for duty, ending months of uncertainty surrounding their deployment.

However, Mr Hassan Wario and Mr Richard Ekai, who were to serve in Austria and Russia respectively, have been held back after being charged with offences relating to misspending funds allocated to the Kenyan team during the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

Mr Wario was the Cabinet secretary at the time and Mr Ekai his principal secretary.

The delay in the deployment of the diplomats had elicited rumours concerning their credibility, but Foreign Affairs Principal Secretary Macharia Kamau allayed fears.

“Deployment of this group of envoys has been based on careful assessment of the respective envoys’ intrinsic and wider value to the promotion of Kenya’s national interest and foreign policy.

“Every country will schedule the presentation ceremonies at specific times depending on their traditions and availability of the head of state,” Mr Kamau said.

DELAYS

He had indicated that the delay in posting the ambassadors was as a result of nothing more than protocol procedure.

The envoys form the second batch of appointments made last June. They are: former DCI boss Ndegwa Muhoro (Malaysia), former Ainamoi MP Benjamin Lang’at (Namibia), Lt-Gen (Rtd) Johnson Kimani Ondiek (Turkey), Ms Sarah Serem (China), Mr Paddy Ahenda (Qatar), Mr Nicholas Ogego (Saudi Arabia), Mr Chris Mburu (South Sudan), and Lt-Gen (Rtd) Samuel Thuita (Israel).

At the same time, Israel and Qatar foreign ministries confirmed that the envoys had already presented credentials.

Ms Serem, the former Salaries and Remuneration Commission chairperson, was due to present hers in Beijing.

Former State House Spokesman Manoah Esipisu left earlier for the UK, and last week represented Deputy President William Ruto during a summit at Warwick University.

RIO SCANDAL
Dr Wario was to serve in Vienna, with accreditations to Hungary and Slovakia as well as 10 UN agencies hosted in the Austrian capital.

In the meantime, Minister Counsellor Humphrey Kanana will carry out diplomatic duties in his stead.

Mr Ekai was to serve in Moscow with accreditation to Belarus, Kazakhstan and Ukraine. The Mission is now headed by Charge d’Affaires Winnie Mwanjala.

Other appointees who were already working include Mr Jacob Kaimenyi (European Union), Ms Phyllis Kandie (Unesco), Ms Judi Wakhungu (Paris), Mr Willy Bett (India), Mr Lawrence Lenayapa (Netherlands), Mr Kiema Kilonzo (Uganda), Dr Wilfred Machage (Nigeria), Mr Mohammed Shidiye (Botswana), Mr Dan Kazungu (Tanzania), and Mr Cleopa Maillu (Switzerland, UN).

By Daily Nation

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