- The Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) has appointed Alex Gitari as the managing director, bringing to a close an executive search that has seen cancellations of previous interviews for the position.
- Mr Gitari, who until his appointment as the acting MD was the General Manager Finance, was confirmed after the interviews that were held last week by the board at Serena Hotel, Nairobi.
The Kenya Airports Authority (KAA) has appointed Alex Gitari as the managing director, bringing to a close an executive search that has seen cancellations of previous interviews for the position.
Mr Gitari, who until his appointment as the acting MD was the General Manager Finance, was confirmed after the interviews that were held last week by the board at Serena Hotel, Nairobi.
The position has remained vacant for nearly two years and earlier the Transport Cabinet secretary James Macharia cancelled interviews for the appointment of the managing director after the board only presented a single name.
The cancellation once again brought to the limelight the competing interests that have in the past been at the centre of recruiting a managing director at the cash-rich parastatal pitting the ministry against the board.
Mr Gitari, 57, emerged top after defeating seven other candidates including Joseph Njoroge from the Ministry of Transport who was position two and KAA manager, Henry Ogoye who was number three.
“We have confirmed Mr Gitari as the managing director of the KAA and he has already received his letter of appointment,” said a top official at the Ministry of Transport who sought anonymity in an interview with the Business Daily.
The agency has been without a substantive head for close to two years after the term of the Norwegian Johnny Andersen ended in 2019 and the expatriate opted against a second term.
Mr Machari cancelled previous appointments after the KAA board presented the name of Gitari for promotion.
The standard procedure requires the board to submit three names for the Cabinet secretary to tap one as head of a State corporation.
The KAA conducted the first interview in February last year with the second one happening in March.
The recruitment of a new chief executive at the airports agency has always been marred with political interference.
In 2015, the KAA witnessed a bungled process following the resignation of Lucy Mbugua who had been accused of corruption.
Efforts to replace her hit a dead end on three occasions.
Mr Macharia cancelled the recruitment process and appointed consultancy PricewaterhouseCoopers to hire afresh even as vested interests fought viciously for the job, leading to thehiring of Mr Andersen.
Former KAA chairperson David Kimaiyo said State officials and some of the directors keen to put their cronies in the position had mired the process.
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