Showdown Looms at KRA over the New Commissioner General

KRA board accusing the Treasury of appointing Mburu before the recruitment process was complete

Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) board is on a war path with the Treasury over last week appointment of James Githii Mburu as the new commissioner general.

The board is said to be angry that the Treasury went behind its back and purported to appoint Mburu before the recruitment process was complete.

According to reliable sources, KRA board had not settled on a candidate and were actually surprised by the announcement of Mburu’s appointment.

“The board, especially the chairman(Francis) Muthaura is very angry with this move,” said the source. “The board members are yet to acknowledge Mburu as the commissioner general.”

Treasury secretary Henry Rotich last Thursday appointed Mburu as the new KRA Commissioner-General, taking over from Mr John Njiraini.

In a gazette notice dated June 6, Rotich appointed Mburu for a three-year term effective July 1, 2019.

The announcement came soon after KRA board last month shortlisted five top candidates out of a total of 30 applicants for the job.

The other four finalists included the Institute of Certified Public Accountants of Kenya (ICPAK) national chairman Julius Mwatu, former KPMG partner Richard Boro Ndung'u, the Executive Director of the Commonwealth Association of Tax Administrators Duncan Otieno Onduru and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) regional advisor in charge of East and Central Africa on tax matters Andrew Kazora Okello.

According to the sources, KRA board was still in the process of picking the next commissioner general.

Said the source: “The board did not pick Mburu. Njiraini bypassed the board and forwarded Mburu’s name for selfish reasons.”

The board has rejected the appointment and Mburu is yet to be introduced to the KRA staff.

As a matter of fact, Mburu’s purported appointment has not been acnnounced in KRA social media pages.

Before the controversial appointment, Mburu was serving as the taxman's commissioner for Intelligence and Strategic Operations.

He is said to be blood relatives with the outgoing Njiraini.