Opposition chief Raila Odinga has assembled a transition team of eight technocrats and close associates to oversee government handover if he wins the presidency on Tuesday.

The transition management team has been meeting to identify priority areas if the former Prime Minister is victorious in the closely contested election.

Yesterday multiple sources told the Star Raila plans to introduce drastic measures to rationalise, align and restructure government ministries and departments and reduce public expenditure by eliminating duplication.

Part of the team will join top government officials, formally known as the Assumption of the Office of the President Committee, to spearhead the handover of power.

Naming the transition team signals that Raila is confident about vanquishing President Uhuru Kenyatta and denying him a second term.

Opinion polls indicate a dead heat that might, for the first time in Kenya history, require a run-off.

The transition team represents nominees of all five NASA principals. hey are experts in the Constitution and legal affairs, economics, governance, security, politics and public policy.

It will be headed by law don Dr Mutakha Kangu, ex-chairman of the now-defunct Task Force on Devolved Government.

Other members are economist Dr David Ndii, East Africa Legislative Assembly member Abubakar Zein and lawyer Paul Mwangi.

Raila’s running mate, Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka, is represented by Makueni Senator Mutula Kilonzo Jnr. Tongaren MP Eseli Simiyu represents Ford Kenya boss Moses Wetang’ula.

Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto, the CCM party boss, is represented by his party chairman Isiolo Deputy Governor Mohammed Guleid.

The transition team will develop the NASA Cabinet portfolios, among other tasks.

On Wednesday Raila told Reuters in Suswa, Narok, that Jubilee cannot win next week’s General Election without rigging the result.

“There is no other way Jubilee can win election, other than through rigging and they know it. That is why they are making all the efforts,” he said as he left a rally in Suswa town.

“I’m very confident we are going to get a very, very decisive victory,” he said.

Because of the closeness of the election, the bitterness and sporadic violence, many Kenyans are jittery, fearing a repeat of the 2007 polls. At that time Raila alleged rigging and called for demonstrations after tallying was abruptly stopped Kibaki declared the winner.

More than 1,200 people were killed and 650,000 people displaced in a campaign of orchestrated ethnic violence that followed.

Kenyatta and William Ruto, now the DP, were charged at the International Criminal Court in the Hague with crimes against humanity. The cases collapsed and the prosecution says there was witness tampering.

The head of Raila’s presidential campaign, Musalia Mudavadi, said they were confident of victory.

“Option one is we are winning and we shall win. Option two is we cannot lose,” Mudavadi told a rally in Kisumu.

According to law, the President-elect is entitled to round-the-clock security ahead of the swearing-in ceremony. This could be within days after an outright first-round victory or by the end of August in case of a Supreme Court challenge.

The 22-member Assumption of the the Office of President Committee is mandated to facilitate the handing over and organise for the security of the President-elect.

The same committee is also required to publish in the Gazette, the date and place of the swearing-in. The day is a public holiday.

According to the Assumption of the Office of the President Act, the President-elect should nominate three people to join other 19 officials, mostly top officials of the outgoing administration.

It is not clear whether the Raila-Kalonzo transition team will also act as public watchmen and watchdogs during the transition.

Government assets, including coffers, have been looted during some transitions.

During the 2013 period, for instance, Auditor General Edward Ouko flagged suspicious transfer of billions of shillings into and out of the government’s secret security accounts.

The Public Accounts Committee recommended that ex-Interior PS Mutea Iringo and other accounting officers be investigated. They presided over irregular withdrawal of large sums from ministry’s accounts at the Central Bank of Kenya.

Iringo was fired over the scandal that MPs said amounted to Sh2.8 billion.

Economist Ndii, EALA member Mutakha Kangu and lawyer Mwangi are close Raila associates involved in his presidential campaign.

Their appointment was a clear indication they would be at the helm in a new administration.

For a smooth handover, the Assumption of Office Act provides for the Committee to be chaired by the Secretary to the Cabinet, in this case Joseph Kinyua.

Other members are KDF chief Gen Samson Mwathethe, NIS director general Philip Kameru, National Police Service IG Joseph Boinett and Attorney General Githu Muigai.

Others are the National Assembly Clerk Michael Sialai, Judiciary Chief Registrar Anne Amadi and Senate Clerk Jeremiah Nyegenye.

Treasury PS Kamau Thugge, Foreign Affairs’ Monica Juma as well as ICT’s Principal Secretary Victor Kyalo should also be part of the critical committee.

However, most key members of the Assumption of the Office Committee are among prominent individuals Raila has accused of planning to rig the polls for Uhuru.

The law requires, however, that all public officers involved must work with the President-elect.

For instance, a public officer from whom information is requested must provide the information within a reasonable time.

A public officer who fails to comply with the Act commits an offence and if convicted is liable to a fine of Sh1 million, a two-year prison term or both.

However, the committee will only be constituted if the incumbent is defeated.

If Kenyatta is reelected, there will be no need for a committee.

According to the Constitution, the President-elect will be sworn in 14 days after results are declared.

This is only if results are not contested in the Supreme Court.

If they are disputed, the swearing in will be postponed until the verdict. CS David Maraga says petitions will be heard in two weeks.

During the inauguration, the outgoing President hands over to the President a sword and the 2010 Constitution as instruments of power and authority.

Source:The Star

Comments