His face doesn’t appear in media cycles as much as his signature on government memos, circulars and other documents.¬†
Be that as it may. Head of Public Service,¬†Joseph Kinyua, is regarded as the engine of President Uhuru Kenyatta‘s government because of his role in coordinating different departments, the Standard reported.¬†
Kinyua was appointed to government by then President Daniel arap Moi as Treasury PS and was retained by President Mwai Kibaki at the Planning Ministry before returning to Treasury in 2004 where he stayed until Jubilee came to power.
Their close relationship started at Treasury when Kinyua was Finance PS, reporting to Uhuru as the minister.¬†
The workaholic civil servant would report to Treasury at 4am although his boss strutted to work later in the day at 8am and even today, he remains an early riser at State House. He has an office both at State House and Harambee House.
Human Resources expert John Osoro told The Standard that the Head of the Public Service is not only answerable to the President but also runs the Cabinet Office which communicates executive decisions besides supervising and coordinating ministries and departments.
Kinyua has had a career spanning three decades in government, overseeing major policy decisions and as such, Cabinet Secretaries prefer¬†running to him for advice before making presentations to the president.¬†
He has earned President Kenyatta’s trust and that may explain why Uhuru is reluctant to let him go despite Kinyua reaching the age of 67.¬†
In 2016, Kinyua had requested to retire but the president prevailed upon him to stay, at least until after the 2017 General Elections.¬†
The veteran insider’s firm, but decisive calmness makes him a key influencer in shaping policies because he understands the mechanics of the government.¬†
While some of his cabinet colleagues immerse themselves in riches from public coffers, he has a reputation of being frugal and incorruptible.¬†
It is reported that he surrenders his government vehicles on every Friday¬†and uses his private cars on weekends, including Pick-ups.¬†