CS Kagwe's Resignation Calls Rise After KEMSA CEO Grilling

  • Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe.
    Health Cabinet Secretary Mutahi Kagwe.
    File
  • Political leaders and medics are pushing for the resignation of Health CS Mutahi Kagwe after he was implicated in the Kenya Medical Supplies Agency scandal by suspended CEO Jonah Manjari.  

    While he was being grilled by the Senate on Friday, August 28, Manjari alleged that Kagwe and his Principal Secretary Susan Mochache influenced tender awards with beneficiaries embezzling Covid-19 funds.

    Speaking with Kenyans.co.ke on Saturday, August 29, the Kenya National Union of Nurses (KNUN) Secretary-General, Seth Panyako accused Kagwe of being the leader of the cartels he was reportedly fighting at Afya House, urging the CS to step down.

    "The United Nations classified theft of Covid-19 funds as crimes against humanity and Kagwe with his PS should face charges. He should step aside but it is obvious that he wouldn't do so. President Uhuru Kenyatta should therefore fire him and allow investigations to be conducted without interference," Panyako stated.

    Kenya National Union of Nurses Secretary-General Seth Panyako addresses the media during East Africa Labour and Health Workforce Scientific Conference in Mombasa on November 28, 2019.
    Kenya National Union of Nurses Secretary-General Seth Panyako addresses the media during East Africa Labour and Health Workforce Scientific Conference in Mombasa on November 28, 2019.
    File

    The vocal medic alleged that the Health Ministry was inflating Covid-19 statistics to embezzle funds and donors' aid. Panyako affirmed that the Covid-19 pandemic existed in Kenya, but not at the rate projected by the Ministry. 

    He also urged Kagwe to protect nurses and doctors and increase their salaries rather than reportedly spending Covid-19 billions on budgeting for tea at Afya House.

    Former Kakamega Senator, Boni Khalwale seized the moment to launch an attack at the Orange Democratic Movement party led by former Prime Minister Raila Odinga. Khalwale argued that Odinga should push for more investigations and asked Kenyatta to fire and arrest Kagwe and PS Mochache.

    On Saturday, August 22, Law Society of Kenya President asked Kenyans to refrain from pushing for Kagwe's resignation which is seemingly an impossibility. He instead advised legislators to initiate the CS's impeachment process.

    "There are so many cowardly and noisy charlatans in Government. This chorus about CS Health Mutahi Kagwe resigning is unnecessary and fruitless. Initiate his removal through the National Assembly as you are entitled to. Do you legislators ever read The Constitution of Kenya?" Havi wondered.

    Senior Counsel Ahmednassir Abdullahi also called for Kagwe's resignation. President Uhuru Kenyatta ordered investigations into the scandal to be completed in 21 days for the real culprits to be uncovered. 

    CS Kagwe has not yet defended himself against suspended CEO Jonah Manjari's accusations. However, on Monday, August 17, he dismissed an investigative report by NTV anchor Dennis Okari. The report dubbed Covid-19 Millionaires exposed the rot at KEMSA.

    “I don't know who is supposed to have sent instructions to KEMSA, I can assure you for a fact that it is not the person you are looking at. It would be interesting to know and these are the things I'm talking about, theories and innuendos that are just fiction," he stated.

    Health CS Mutahi Kagwe opens an isolation facility in Makueni County on Wednesday, July 8, 2020
    Health CS Mutahi Kagwe opens an isolation facility in Makueni County on Wednesday, July 8, 2020
    File