Cabinet Secretaries in Kenya and Their Roles 2023

The Kenyan cabinet is composed of the President, the Deputy President, the Attorney General, and Cabinet Secretaries. The 2010 constitution permits a maximum of 22 ministries. Upon being nominated by the President, the ministers or cabinet secretaries must be vetted and approved by the National Assembly before joining the cabinet. Cabinet Secretaries are accountable both individually and collectively, to the President for the exercise of their powers and the performance of their functions.

The President of Kenya is the head of state and government of Kenya. The President controls the executive branch of the Kenyan government and is the commander-in-chief of the Kenyan Defence Forces. The current President is Uhuru Kenyatta, who is serving his second and final term in office.

The President appoints a Cabinet Secretary to lead each of the nineteen ministries of the Kenyan government. The President also appoints a number of Principal Secretaries who are answerable to the Cabinet Secretary.

The role of the Cabinet Secretary is to provide political leadership to their ministry and to ensure that the ministry delivers on its mandate. The Cabinet Secretary is also responsible for coordinating the work of their ministry with other ministries and with the President’s office.

The nineteen ministries are:

Ministry of Defence

Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government

Ministry of Finance

Ministry of Education

Ministry of Health

Ministry of Lands and Physical Planning

Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure

Ministry of Energy and Petroleum

Ministry of ICT, Innovation and Youth Affairs

Ministry of Water and Sanitation

Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries

Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives

Ministry of Environment and Forestry

Ministry of Labour and Employment

Ministry of Sports, Culture and the Arts

Ministry of Empowerment and Regional Development

The President may also appoint a number of State Departments and Agencies which are headed by a Chief Executive Officer who reports to the relevant Cabinet Secretary.

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