Former Kenya Defence Forces (KDF) officer Captain Paul Rukaria has moved to court to sue President William Ruto and Attorney General Justin Muturi over unlawful dismissal.
Rikaria had been appointed by retired President Uhuru Kenyatta as the Kenya National Trading Corporation (KNTC) board chairman on August 5, 2022 just four days before the August 9 general elections for a term of three years.
President William Ruto however revoked his appointment in a gazette notice dated February 6, 2023 replacing him with Hussein Tene Debasso, who vied for the Isiolo governorship in 2022.
Rikaria now claims that there was no consultation with the State Corporations Advisory Committee before the revocation of his appointment.
“Section 7 (3) of the State Corporations Act is clear that before the President can revoke the appointment of any Board member, there have to be cogent reasons for the said revocation and that the same must be subjected to consultation with the state Corporation Advisory Committee,” Rukaria argues.
He claimed that by rescinding his appointment, the First in Command violated the Constitution and that the President had no capacity to appoint Debasso because at the time there was a substantive office holder of the position.
“In line with principles of good governance and accountability.I was neither notified nor informed of the impending degazettement and had to embarrassingly found about the same from social media and incessant calls from friends and relatives. Needless to say, no reasons were given for the said prejudicial action,”Rukaria claims.
Rukaria now wants his successor’s appointment to be postponed until the suit is heard, and then nullified so that he can be reinstated.
According to him, the President can only revoke a board member’s appointment if the President is satisfied (for compelling reasons) that the member has failed to carry out his/her functions in the national interest and if the member ceases to hold office.