Times Tower. The KRA headquarters in Nairobi
Times Tower. The KRA headquarters in Nairobi.

James Githii Mburu, the Kenya Revenue Authority Commissioner for Intelligence and Strategic Operations, is among five candidates shortlisted as the taxman seeks to replace Commissioner General John Njiraini.

Mburu had been in the news after leading investigations that led to the arrest of dozens of KRA junior and middle-level staff members accused of conniving with taxpayers to evade tax obligations.

However, his appointment was questioned by Auditor General Edward Ouko as the position did not exist within the KRA hierarchy and was not done competitively.

“The position is in contravention of the KRA established regulations as it was not in the authority’s establishment. The position was not advertised both internally and externally and therefore disadvantaged other would-be applicants,” Ouko said in his report.

Mburu had earlier failed to clinch the position of Commissioner of Investigations and Enforcement after coming second in the interview stage.

Others shortlisted are Julius Waita Mwatu, Richard Boro Ndung’u, Andrew Kazora Okello and Duncan Otieno Nduru.

Mwatu, who has over 20 years professional accounting experience, is currently the Group Chief Finance Officer (CFO) at Indigo Telecom, in charge of Strategy, Finance & Risk.

Ndung’u is the Founder Director of Veritatem (Kenya) Limited, a financial advisory, training and consultancy company.

Previously, he was the Regional Head of Tax & Corporate Services in KPMG East Africa for 18 years and then served as their first Kenyan Chief Executive Officer & Senior Partner.

Okello is the International Monetary Fund (IMF) regional advisor in charge of East and Central Africa on tax matters while Nduru is the Executive Director of the Commonwealth Association of Tax Administrators.

“The applications were scrutinized for conformity with the requirements published in media advertisements following which the KRA Board approved 5 candidates for attendance of final interviews,” a notice in a section of the local press on Tuesday stated.

Njiraini’s tenure ends at the end of this month after it was extended by the KRA board.

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He is presently serving his terminal leave though he was recently recalled to manage the situation at Times Tower after the arrests of several officers. But there is no evidence that he resumed his duties.

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