Health Cabinet Secretary Susan Nakhumicha says the Public Service Commission (PSC) is to blame for the delay in confirming the acting Director General Patrick Amoth.
Nakhumicha told MPs that when the position was to be filled substantially, some contestation arose from other cadres of staff questioning why the officer holder must be a medical doctor.
“That is yet to be resolved by the public service committee and commission and I am waiting for their feedback,” she said.
She, however, stated that she is working on his issue.
The CS also stated that as a ministry they are making amendments to the law to address functionality and specific professions to hold such positions.
Bumula MP Jack Wamboka who chairs the National Assembly’s Public Investment Committee on Governance and Education had taken to task the CS to explain why the officer has served in an acting capacity for so long.
During the interrogation, it became apparent that Amoth has served in the position for five years contrary to the law, which provides that a person must be confirmed after the lapse of six months in office.
“Madam Minister, how long has the Dr Amoth has been acting? Honestly, Waziri, this is a working government you want to say you say you are being fair to Kenyans and to him as a person?” Wamboka posed.
But, the CS defended herself saying despite the matter being historical and having inherited it, she had made efforts to try and address it arguing she had written letters to the Commission over it.
“If it was my own volition, if it was up to me to make the appointment I would resolve the matter,” she pointed out.
Amoth had accompanied the CS during the meeting.
He is a graduate of the University of Nairobi’s Medical School and has a Master in Obstetrics and Gynaecology from the same university.
He also holds a Diploma in Health Systems Management from Galilee College in Israel.
In March 2022, the Cabinet Secretary for Health Mutahi Kagwe was also summoned by senators to explain why Amoth was yet to be fully appointed as the Director General.
According to Kagwe, PSC delayed approval of the proposed organisational structure and staff establishment in order to fill the position.
Nakhumicha was facing the MPs to explain why her ministry was yet to comply with a directive to revert Kenya University Teaching, Research and Referral Hospital (KUTRRH) to the University as recommended by Parliamentary committees of the 12th parliament in its reports.
In her submission, CS strongly objected to the move saying the hospital currently plays a critical role in the provision of specialized health services which has been made possible by further government investment of over Sh5 billion to date.
“In addition, there are existing contracts with different stakeholders whose termination would have far-reaching legal implications. As a key player in the provision of health services, the hospital has served over 330,000 patients,” she said.