The succession politics of who will replace Commissioner-General John Njiraini at the Kenya Revenue Authority is not about to end. The matter is already is being litigated in the Labour and Industrial Relations Court where activist Okiya Omtata is seeking to stop any extension to the commissioner’s term. Omtata contends that Njiraini has attained the mandatory retirement age of 60 years and has already served two terms, and should therefore retire.
In court papers, Njiraini claims that he has no interest in having a new term as head of the Kenya Revenue Authority, but without disclosing it to court, the Government-appointed board of directors has deliberated on the “need” to give a new contract to Njiraini.
The Nairobi Law Monthly has learnt that the Board of KRA has given Njiraini a rolling contract of one year, starting from the time the court dismisses the case he faces. The Board, according to our sources, has been forced by a senior state House operative to extend Njiraini’s terms despite strong protest by some members – a number of whom protested in the middle of a Meeting that Njiraini is non-performer who relies solely on political patronage, and further emphasising the need for new blood at the authority.
Both Njiraini’s terms have defined by low morale among staff, runaway corruption, nepotism and gross failure to meet tax targets for successive fiscal years. According to a financial analyst who spoke to the Nairobi Law Monthly, KRA will, yet again, miss its target for the financial year 2018/2019 by over Sh500 billion.^