Late Diplomat Kiboi’s Wife Working At Kenya Embassy

The wife of Mr. James Kiboi, the late Kenyan Diplomat who died in a house inferno in Norway in September last year, is currently working as a diplomat at the Kenyan embassy in Stockholm. According to information from the Swedish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Catherine Njaari Ndilai Kiboi began work at the Kenyan Embassy in Stockholm as an “Attaché” this year. The Ministry told KSB that Mrs Kiboi has no known portfolio at the Embassy and that her rank is that of an “Attache”.

Apart from the Ambassador Mrs Purity Muhindi, other officials are Ms Josephine Vivian Awuor, Principle Counsellor, Mr. George Henry Kinywa, First Secretary, Ms Ann K.M Kesekwa, Third secretary and Ms Linnet Mmogi Vitisia, Third secretary.

At the humanitarian level, the appointment of Mrs Kiboi as a diplomat at the Embassy is a fantastic development because Mr. Kiboi left behind very young children who need to be taken care of. Sending Mrs Kiboi to Kenya after the tragic death of her husband could have been inhuman and devastating especially from the point of view of the needs and up-keep of the children. The decision to convert Catherine from a House wife into a diplomat was therefore the best option that was open to the Kenyan government under the tragic circumstances. Nobody in his or her real senses could have opposed such a brilliant appointment.

However, at the political level, the appointment of Catherine as a diplomat at the Embassy could raise serious questions because what it means is that the wife of a Kenyan diplomat could inherit her husband’s position in the event of death. The late Kiboi was an “Attaché” in charge of Political Affairs and his wife Catherine has not inherited his position. However, she is currently a diplomat at the Embassy after the death of her husband and for many Wakenya who think, the question is whether the appointment was in order if humanitarian considerations were set aside.

In the event of death of a diplomat of Mr. Kiboi’s caliber, the expected turn of events is that Kiboi’s family was supposed to have been compensated financially by the Kenyan government for his death. Such a compensation could have meant that the family travels back to Kenya to begin a new life under the compensation arrangement.

Since Kiboi’s wife has now been appointed as a diplomat at the Embassy, the question (at the political level) is whether the appointment is part of the compensation. If Mrs Kiboi received a financial compensation for the death of her husband (which is obligatory under the laws of Kenya), Ukweli wa mambo is that her appointment as a diplomat at the Embassy under any compensation arrangement might raise questions.

KSB believes that following Kiboi’s death, his family should have been well taken care of as per the laws of Kenya. Mrs Kiboi’s job at the Embassy is good especially for the kids. But, is it legal under Kenyan law? Is it true that spouses of diplomats can inherit their positions in the event of death or is Mrs Kiboi’s case a special one? We are not against the appointment of Catherine as a diplomat at the Embassy. We are just questioning it’s validity at the legal level otherwise we wish Kiboi’s family well

Okoth Osewe