In a meticulous vetting process led by Belgut MP Hon. Nelson Koech, the Departmental Committee on Defence, Intelligence, and Foreign Relations scrutinized four Presidential nominees for key diplomatic positions.
The nominees, Ms. Fouzia Abdirahman Abass (Bern, Switzerland), Amb. Betty Chebet Cherwon (Paris, France), Amb. Fredrick Lusambili Matwanga (Rome, Italy), and Amb. Angeline Kavindu Musili (Stockholm, Sweden), faced a barrage of questions to evaluate their suitability for the roles and understanding of Kenya’s diplomatic priorities.
During the heated session, Amb. Betty Chebet Cherwon, a seasoned diplomat, defended her candidacy by outlining her plans to enhance economic diplomacy between Kenya and France. With a background as the chief protocol officer at the Ministry of Foreign and Diaspora Affairs since 2019 and previous experience as a Counselor at the Kenyan Embassy in Berlin, she emphasized her commitment to marketing Kenya as a favorable trading partner in Paris.
Additionally, she convinced the members that she is set to leverage Paris’s significance in climate change affairs to bolster Kenya’s efforts in combating climate change.
Ms. Fouzia Abdirahman Abbas, a former Chief Procurement Officer at the United Nations, expressed her intent to utilize her extensive diplomatic skills to forge strategic partnerships between Kenya and Switzerland.
With a focus on trade, scientific research, and education, she highlighted her vision before the members on how she would be of value to help strengthen collaboration between the two nations.
Ms. Abass deeply emphasized her dedication to economic diplomacy, aiming to bridge the trade gap between Kenya and France, utilizing the vibrant trade environment in Paris.
Amb. Fredrick Lusambili Matwanga, currently serving as the Director for Economic and Commercial Diplomacy at the Ministry of Foreign and Diaspora Affairs, showcased his expertise in economic affairs.
Matwanga, having previously worked at the Kenyan UN Mission in Geneva, hinted at his experience in the position to contribute significantly to Kenya’s economic diplomacy initiatives.
Amb. Angeline Kavindu Musili’s vetting surprised the committee with her rigorous experience and well-versed experience, qualifications, and plans for the diplomatic post in Stockholm, Sweden.
The nominees’ wealth, was disclosed during the vetting process and all were tax compliant and other key requirements as confirmed. As the vetting sessions continue, the nation watches closely, anticipating the appointment of capable and dedicated diplomats to represent Kenya’s interests on the global stage.
“It is important that if you are appointed, you do as much as possible to help ease the pressure back home. We, for instance, are having a strain on the dollar. You will have your work clearly cut out if you are approved. However, we wait for the collective wisdom of this Committee when we retreat to draft a Report on your suitability,” said Hon. Koech.
In a diligent effort to assess the suitability of the 27 nominees, the vetting process is entering its final week, with closure anticipated on Thursday, November 2, 2023.
Following the rigorous vetting sessions, the Committee is poised to present its comprehensive Report on or before November 8, 2023, to ensure timely submission so that the House can conscientiously deliberate on the matter within the statutory timelines.