Kenya President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday, June 3, 2020, issued a new executive order abolishing the Presidency and putting the office of the Deputy President under the Office of the President (OP).
In the order which is viewed as targeting William Ruto, the Office of the Deputy President will no longer have an independent budget and will from now on take orders from the Office of the President.
According to the current Kenya constitution, the national executive comprises the president, the deputy president and the Cabinet.
Executive Order No 1 of 2020 also places Ruto’s Chief of Staff Ken Nyaucho Osinde under the OP which means that he will now be reporting to State House Chief of Staff Nzioka Waita.
In the reorganisation, the National Development Implementation and Communication Committee, headed by Dr Fred Matiang’i is not listed as one of the functions of the Interior ministry. Instead, a new role designated as Oversight and Co-ordination in delivery of National Priorities and Flagship Programmes has been created.
Also now within the Office of the President is the Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) headed by Major General Mohamed Badi.
The NMS will now draw its funding from the Consolidated Funds Services (CFS), according to the new order.
The subtle changes within the structure of government have left many confused on Mr Kenyatta’s hidden political agenda.
Lawyer Donald Kipkorir explained that the simple change had far-reaching consequences. “This innocent looking nomenclature change has huge legal implications. President denotes singularity of power in remember that the Presidency is shared power,” he published on Twitter.
But some constitutional lawyers said nothing has changed, explaining the order as a mere regularisation of changes in government.
Others interpreted the changes as Mr Kenyatta’s new grand plan to usher in new political changes ahead of wholesale constitutional changes recommended under the Building Bridges Initiative. A referendum is set to decide on the way forward.