10 Things to Know About Festus Mwangi Kiunjuri “Wa Gerald”

Mwangi Kiunjuri

1. Mwangi Kiunjuri was born on April 29, 1969, and brought up in the Kahurura Forest section of the Mt Kenya region in Kieni, Nyeri County. His father worked as a dresser at a dispensary in the Kahurura Forest area, while his mother was a home manager who also engaged in peasant farming. He is the 11th child in a family of 12.

2. Mwangi Kiunjuris a Kenyan politician who holds a Bachelor of Education (Arts) degree from Moi University, Maseno Campus. He also holds a Global Masters in Business Administration (GMBA) from USIU. He had a stint of three years studying law at the University of Nairobi but later dropped to pursue GMBA.

3. While on campus, Mwangi Kiunjuri sold second-hand clothes during his free time. After university, Mwangi Kiunjuri ventured into the grocery business. He bought farm-fresh vegetables at Kinangop and sold them in Nairobi’s Githurai market. Mwangi also served as a teacher at Mathira-based Kiarithani Secondary School. Then, he ran a transport business on the side. Though he appreciated the teaching career, he got involved in other things that interested him including politics.

4. Mwangi Kiunjuri was elected to the parliament in 1997, then representing the Democratic Party; he became the youngest MP in Kenya since he was only 28 years old when he was elected. He retained his seat in the 2002 and 2007 elections. He has also been the assistant minister of Water and Irrigation and the assistant minister for energy. He became the cabinet secretary for Devolution and Planning in 2015 replacing Anne Waiguru who resigned on health grounds. When the Jubilee government retained power in the October 26th, 2017 general elections, Mwangi Kiunjuri was appointed the Cabinet Secretary for Agriculture.

5. In 2013 Mwangi Kiunjuri vied for a gubernatorial seat in Laikipia country but lost to Joshua Irungu. Mwangi Kiunjuri got a political lifeline in 2015 when President Kenyatta appointed him to succeed the more polished and articulate Anne Waiguru. It was during his vetting to become a CS that it became apparent just how much his financial fortunes had changed. According to a wealth declaration report by Parliament’s Committee on Appointments, Kiunjuri declared his wealth to be valued at Sh798 Million as of December 2015 – mainly from landholdings and buildings in Nanyuki, Sagana, and Nairobi.

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Mwangi Kiunjuri and His Wife

6. In December 2003, 35 years old by then, the CS together with Jakoyo Midiwo and Ali Mwakwere were caught in a police sting to rid the city of twilight girls. They were arrested in a swoop on prostitutes in Nairobi’s Koinange Street. Though they all denied the allegations, the Sunday Nation which had covered the story refused to withdraw and insisted it was standing by its story and ready to defend it in court. It is in this Koinange solidarity that in 2015, the former Gem MP, Jakoyo Midiwo, defied CORD leader, Raila Odinga’s instructions of opposing the nomination of Mwangi Kiunjuri as Devolution Cabinet Secretary.

7. Together with his wife Wangui Kimathi they have sired two children, a boy named after the CS and a daughter called Wahu. He wedded Wangui Kimathi in Nanyuki an event that was graced by who is who. Former President Daniel Moi donated one of the 10 bulls slaughtered during the wedding. Former President Mwai Kibaki was the one who welcomed the young Kiunjuri to Wazee’s club.

8. A hard-hitting puncher, Mwangi Kiunjuri was appointed Water Assistant Minister and was then involved in a mudslinging contest with his boss, Ms. Charity Ngilu in 2011 over alleged corruption in the ministry. The two had fallen out over multi-billion shilling contracts.

Mwangi Kiunjuri
Mwangi Kiunjuri

9. In 2015, Mr. Mwangi Kiunjuri, the assistant minister for Energy then, told a Nairobi court that he had an affair with a woman known as Mary Ng’endo but they did not have any children. Ms. Ng’endo came from Laikipia West, Mr. Kiunjuri’s constituency, and has a child with the CS. Mwangi is known to prey on light-skinned mature and financially stable powerful women. He is lately rumored to be spending a lot of time, quality time with Kirinyaga Women Rep Purity Wangui Ngirici who is married to the son of a former spy, James Kanyotu, Andrew Ngirici.

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10. With the look of things, Mwangi Kiunjuri could be on his way out of government after President Uhuru got really angry with the CS during the ASK show in Nairobi for paying the traders of maize before paying the farmers, he scolded him in public.

A visible angry Kenyatta walked to Kiunjuri, pointed at him, and warned him in Kikuyu “Mungiriha ni mukuona” loosely translated to “if you dare make the payments, you will face the music”

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