In the latest government reorganisation announced on Wednesday by the State House, significant changes occurred within the Water and Sanitation Ministry.

Cabinet Secretary Alice Wahome and her Principal Secretary Paul Ronoh have been reassigned to different ministries, bringing an end to the discord witnessed at Maji House.

Ms Wahome has been transferred to the Ministry of Lands, while Dr Ronoh will now assume his news role at the Ministry of Agriculture as PS in charge of Crops Development.

This reshuffle comes after a period of intense disagreement and allegations of corruption within the cash-rich Athi Water Works, which exposed the infighting between the two.

Water and Sanitation PS Dr Ronoh during a previous visit to Kimwarer Dam. Image: courtesy.
Water and Sanitation PS Dr Ronoh during a previous visit to Kimwarer Dam. Images: courtesy.

The Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) had called for the suspension of Michael Thuita, the CEO of Athi Water, pending an investigation into alleged corruption at the parastatal. Ms. Wahome had initially resisted these calls, with PS Ronoh also advocating for Eng Thuita’s suspension.

The situation reached a turning point when Felix Koskei, the Head of Public Works, intervened and ordered the suspension of the Athi Water CEO.

In response, Eng Thuita chose to resign from his position. Mr Koskei had issued directives to the Athi Water board to suspend the water boss as corruption allegations continued to overshadow the parastatal.

Accusations of corruption within Athi Water had placed Ms Wahome in a precarious position, with mounting pressure for decisive action.

Related story: Koskei Shakes Maji House with Suspension of Athi Water Boss

As a former Kandara MP and a close ally of Dr Ruto in the Mt Kenya region, Ms Wahome found herself navigating turbulent waters as the conflict between her and Mr Ronoh unfolded, shedding light on underlying discord within the ministry and raising questions about the strength of their working relationship.

Ms Wahome accused the Principal Secretary of escalating the matter to higher offices without prior discussion with her. She later denied allegations of interfering with the investigations at the parastatal.

These changes in the government’s leadership structure mark a significant development in resolving the internal disputes within the Water and Sanitation Ministry.