CS Moses Kuria Proposes Ending Permanent Employment for Civil Servants

President William Ruto chairing a Cabinet meeting in Nairobi on January 15, 2024.
President William Ruto chairing a Cabinet meeting in Nairobi on January 15, 2024.

All civil servants, across all job groups, will cease being permanent employees and be placed on contract terms if a new proposal fronted by the government sails through.

Speaking during a press conference on Tuesday, Public Service Cabinet Secretary Moses Kuria confirmed that the plan is well in motion and is set to be presented to the cabinet on Friday for review.

Upon approval, all government workers will now be renewed on a contractual basis.

He raised concern about how one million civil servants gobbled up almost half of the country's tax revenues, contributing to the country's bloated public wage bill.

Public Service CS Moses Kuria during the burial of Pauline Njoroge's, popularly known as 'Mama Mboga', son, April 3.
CS Kuria

He pointed out that austerity measures needed to be effected to lower the wage bill and reduce the burden on the taxpayers.

"Last week, we were in the wage bill conference and pointed out that one million consuming 50 per cent of our tax revenue means there's something wrong. That is why if the doctors think we are against them, this week on Friday, I will be moving to Cabinet to present a proposal which if Cabinet approves, all government workers from drivers to cleaners to everyone will be converted to contract. No one will be on permanent terms.

"If you want to be permanent, show me that even your tenure on earth is permanent, we are all on a contract basis even on this earth," Kuria stated. 

While addressing the doctors' strike, Kuria questioned why the union declined to respect court orders directing the strike be suspended.

To that effect, Kuria ordered the union's dues to be suspended forthwith. 

"This circus is over. 14 per cent of the Cabinet and governors have been coming here for three days. The amount of humiliation that we have been taken through by the union is unimaginable," he pointed out. 

"All good things must have a sacrifice. I have instructed my payroll people not to remit the dues for this union because I will be abetting crime and disrespecting court orders. Enough is enough!"

CS Kuria pointed out three issues that he was disgruntled about following the doctors' strike. The first thing he pointed out was what he described as dishonesty by the doctors in the form of disrespecting court orders.

Second, he questioned why Kenyans and the media have refused to hold doctors to account with respect to obeying the cited court order. 

Kuria expressed his frustration that if roles were reversed, the government would be on the receiving end of relentless attacks.

Third, he wondered why the focus had shifted from the doctors' strike to personal attacks on Health CS Susan Nakhumicha.

"I have been around several CSs for Health and in those regimes there were industrial actions but matters were restricted to the issues at hand. But for my sister, there has been a lot of personalisation of matters. The women's association has not been speaking up about it. 

KMPDU leaders lead a strike of doctors in Kenya.
KMPDU leaders lead a strike of doctors in Kenya.