On 6 July 2022, President Uhuru Kenyatta formed the assumption of the office of the president committee to oversee the handover of power from himself to whoever Kenyans were to elect on 9 August 2022. We all now know Deputy President William Ruto is that whoever, following his declaration as president-elect by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) chairperson Wafula Chebukati on 15 August 2022 at the Bomas of Kenya.
In naming the committee, President Kenyatta was complying with the Assumption of the Office of President Act of 2012, which requires the sitting president to establish the committee 30 days before a general election. According to the act, the ad hoc committee shall consist of 20 members drawn from various relevant government departments, with the Secretary to the Cabinet designated as the committee’s chairperson.
The Committee’s functions and powers include:
- Facilitating the handing over process by the outgoing president to the president-elect
- Organising for the security of the president-elect
- Organising for the necessary facilities and personnel for the president-elect
- Co-ordinating the briefings of the president-elect by relevant public officers
- Facilitating communication between the outgoing president and the president-elect
- Preparing the programme and organise for the swearing in ceremony
- Carrying out any other activity necessary for the performance of its functions under the assumption of office act
In the event that Deputy President William Ruto’s declaration as president-elect is not challenged at the Supreme Court, Ruto will be sworn in as president on Tuesday 30 August 2022, fourteen days after the declaration of presidential results. Thereafter, a month from the date of the swearing-in of the president-elect, the Committee will wind up its operations by presenting a report of its activities and financial statements to Parliament.
As presently constituted, the Committee comprises Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua (who doubles as Secretary to the Cabinet) as chairperson; Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i and his Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho; Inspector General of Police Hilary Mutyambai; Chief of Defence Forces General Robert Kibochi; Director General of the National Intelligence Service (NIS) Philip Kameru and Registrar of the High Court Anne Amadi; State House Comptroller Kinuthia Mbugua; Attorney General Kihara Kariuki; Principal Secretaries Jerome Ochieng ( Ministry of ICT and Innovation) Julius Muia (Ministry of National Treasury), Macharia Kamau (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), Julius Korir (Ministry of Devolution) and Joe Okudo (Ministry of Sports and Heritage), and Solicitor General Ken Ogeto. Three more people nominated by the president-elect are expected to join the committee.