Humpty Dumpty: The Life of Used and Dumped Nzioka Waita

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(Nzioka Waita)

The current lifestyle of the head of Presidential Delivery Unit Waita Nzioka is a true testimony that power fades and withers like a flower.

When he was plucked in 2016 from Safaricom PLC’s top job that is, the director of corporate affairs, Waita Nzioka quickly became a Mr Fix It for his boss President Uhuru Kenyatta. He would be on top of everything including becoming a centre of generating negative propaganda against the Deputy President William Samoei Ruto.

He disbanded the Presidential Strategic Communication Unit (PSCU) and fired the four directors namely Munyori Buku, Dennis Itumbi, Eric Ng’eno and James Kinyua; and further barred them from accessing State House. They would later moved to Annex House.

The then powerful man ordered the closure of President Kenyatta’s social media pages since the PSCU Director Kanze Dena and Government Spokesman then (Eric Kiraithe) were reporting to him, making him the communication boss for the government.

It is Mr Waita who was the face of the many demolitions that was conducted by the powerful “Sunny” since he was the chair of the Nairobi Regeneration Committee.

It reached a level where Cabinet secretaries and principal secretaries, as well as parastatal executives were dealing with him directly. This ensured “his reach in government far, wide and deep,” as other authors would describe him.

At one time Waita was likened to the late Hezekiah Oyugi who was a powerful permanent secretary in the office of the President under the late President Daniel Moi in early 1990s.

PS Oyugi was literally the third in command after President Moi and Nicholas Biwott. Full ministers used to wait in line to meet him, a mere PS, at his Harambee House office.

In a twist of turn, Mr Waita who is now a spent cartridge is no longer calling shots. He has been edged out of key decision making areas in the Presidency, and has to book appointments to meet President Kenyatta unlike before where he could walk in to the President Uhuru’s office as he wished.

It is these frustrations that has seen the man who has been accused of having a thing with Safaricom PLC’s Chief Customer Officer Sylvia Mulinge become a physiologically battered human. Sources say, of late he is often seen in long soliloquy over the frustrations he has faced in the recent months.

“His friends and peers don’t even have respect for him anymore”, said a person close to Waita.

Kenyans on Twitter can remember when they argued with Economist David Ndii. Many attacked him as empty headed.

“Whiled away many evenings in the 90s at the Invergara Club in stimulating conversation with this guy’s dad, one of the most brilliant, open and independent minded, principled and conscientious Kenyans of his generation—truly a role model. This apple has fallen far from the tree’, Ndii had wrote after Nzioka aimed that Jubilee Govt’s development record was unprecedented.

The man whose love story with Ms Mulinge has blossomed greatly over the years, is now a wasted man who runs to drinking dens even during daytime.

His alleged girlfriend Ms Mulinge is also having another borne to chew with the authorities. Mulinge who allegedly ended her past relationship (s) to concentrate on this powerful man, was drunk driving in February 1, 2015 along the southern bypass, driving a Toyota Prado registration number KBU 483M. She knocked and killed a young girl Mary Kusa Etale. She is yet to face criminal justice system. The case has not gone anywhere “irrigardless” of the many calls to justice by the family of the late.

Where will these lovebirds get their solace from? Case after case.

The St Mary’s alumnus has been reduced to a visitor in his own town. His powers has been clipped by deputy Chief of Staff Njee Muturi, Statehouse Comptroller Kinuthia Mbugua, former presidential adviser Nancy Gitau and former Jubilee Party vice chairman David Murathe.

Nzioka began his work as President Kenyatta’s Chief of Staff and later doubled as the head of Presidential Delivery Unit (PDU) which played a key role in Uhuru’s re-election campaign of 2017.

His frustrations began when his hands were allegedly linked to fictitious tenders where certain percentages were paid upfront for one to get a tender that required state house influence.

Also, he was accused of attempting to install his said girlfriend to take over as the Safaricom PLC’s chief executive officer.

Before that, he was accused of influencing top appointment of Kenya Railways Corporation (KRC) Business Research General Manager Philip Mainga as an acting managing director of KRC, following Atanas Maina’s suspension and other influencial appointments.

He also wanted to replace Head of Civil Service Joseph Kinyua. This saw him rejected by his boss and shunned by everyone including his juniors.

The man who is now a shadow of his former self co-wrote Executive Order 1 which was a powerful instrument that determined the duties of each government department before he was swallowed by the executive order II which took his powers away.

His big-budget Presidential Delivery Unit was taken away from him and given to Interior Ministry under Super CS Fred Matiang’i in an Executive Order in August. This was the first demotion.

With his state house powers gone, Waita is literally working under Dr Fred Matiang’i at Harambee house where he features in press conferences called by Interior CS Matiang’i and Head of Civil Service Joseph Kinyua

From late last year to now, things have not been easy for him. Though he was retained as Chief of Staff on paper in the last reshuffling by President Kenyatta but on the ground, he is not. The major affairs pertaining his job description has been taken away from him. Sources say, he seldomly know the content of the president’s diary. His leave did not save him either.

The ‘last nail on the coffin’ moment was when he was stopped from accompanying President Kenyatta to London for the UK-Africa Investment Summit last month. This came after he had packed his personal effect knowing he would accompany the Head of State.

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