Staffs at Health Ministry’s headquarters, Afya House are a disgruntled lot after their new boss CS Sicily Kariuki displaced senior staff to set up a magnificent office.
The CS ordered Afya House’s seventh floor cleared to establish what insiders describe as a grand office complete with a kitchen, meeting rooms and a changing room.
The move by the CS has triggered disquiet in the ministry, after many senior staff was relocated and now congest other offices, a move that puts into question the government’s commitment to financially frugal.
Among those ousted from the seventh floor include the ministry’s chief finance officer, chief dental specialist, under secretary for medical equipment, senior deputy secretary and head of mental health.
A visit at the Afya house seventh floor showed that three quarters of the floor was under re-construction.
“Surely how can one person take three-quarters of a floor yet the other staff are now overcrowding?” a senior officer lamented.
The current office on the sixth floor where the CS sits was also used by previous ministers, including Beth Mugo (2008-2012), James Macharia (2013-2015) and Cleopa Mailu (2015-2018).
President Uhuru plucked Sicily Kariuki from the Tea Board of Kenya where she was serving as CEO and appointed Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture before being promoted to CS for Public Service and Youth and then to the Ministry of Health in January.
In 2015, Kenyans were livid when then Devolution CS and now Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru and her ministry led spent Sh450,000 for 18 custom-made condom dispensers.
The ministry’s asset register also revealed Sh1.7 million was spent for a screen in CS Anne Waiguru’s office and Sh12 million for an office partition, in the 2013/2014 financial year.
The register, presented by PS Peter Mangiti, listed purchase of a copier at Sh1.5 million, while Sh1.9million was spent for free downloadable Adobe software and Sh250,000 for ten flash disks.
Other purchases that raised eyebrow included;
20 Ball point pens, fine tipped, blue each costing Sh8,700 at a total cost of Sh174,000.
Two IPAD tablets each costing Sh180,000 amounting to Sh360,000.
One DVD player costing at Sh45,000.
100 4GB Flash disks each costing Sh2,420
One Piano costing Sh235,900.
Payment of supply of Kaspersky security kit cost Sh973,780.
One Laptop at Sh206,000.
Two visitors chairs each costing Sh56,950
Business cards Sh1.5 million.
100 Keyboards and adaptors each costing 40,000