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Kenya protests at US criticism
Posted on Friday, September 04, 2009 @ 21:40:40 CDT by kwpnews


NAIROBI (Naisula Lesuuda/KNA) - The government has issued a protest to the US Embassy over a statement the Embassy issued regarding the reappointment of Justice Aaron Ringera as the director of the Kenya Anti Corruption Commission.

In a statement faxed to newsroom, the Foreign affairs ministry terms the action to be in bad taste adding that the embassy has no right of questioning the decision made by the president.

"The ministry considers it objectionable, in bad taste and an affront to the Head of Ste to whom it accredited that the Embassy, should question the action of the president re-appointing Justice Ringera as the Director of KACC." It said.

The ministry also maintains that the president acted within the law since the act does not spell out any procedure for reappointments.

"The power of appointment to any public office vests in the president...Justice Ringera's appointment for a second final term is therefore within the law. The ministry urges the US Embassy to desist from offering unsolicited, unwarranted and misplaced advice on the running affairs of the country."

Justice and constitutional affairs minister and government spokesman Dr. Alfred Mutua have since voiced their displeasure over the remarks.

On Thursday, US Ambassador to Kenya Michael Ranneberger said Ringera didn't deserve the reappointment due to his poor performance record at the helm of the KACC over the last five years

"Even the manner in which the re-appointment was made it clearly raises many questions," said a statement from its Nairobi Embassy on Thursday.

Ranneberger claimed the re-appointment by President Mwai Kibaki compromises the commitment of the reform agenda in the country.

He argued that by by-passing the Advisory Board and Parliament, contrary to the law, the action encourages the culture of impunity which the government needs to urgently address.

"As a good friend of Kenya, we are deeply concerned that the reappointment was clearly made without proper consultation," he said, adding, "The KACC Advisory Board has the responsibility to make recommendations for candidates for Director and Assistant Directors to Parliament, which vets and approves those candidates, and sends the names of approved candidates to the President for him to appoint."

The American Ambassador said that the negative public reaction towards his reappointment is an indication that Kenyans no longer have confidence in Ringera.

The ambassador said that the move undermined government's efforts to fight corruption and end impunity and called for the process to be reviewed.

On Monday the President through a gazette notice re-appointed Justice Ringera for another five years.


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