Joseph Kipruto Kipkoech is the new Director of Information, following the retirement of Josephine Kinuthia.
In a letter dated September 27th, 2023, copied to the Cabinet Secretary, Ministry of Information Communications and The Digital Economy Eliud Owalo, and signed by the State Department for Broadcasting and Telecommunications Principal Secretary, Prof. Dr. Edward Kisiang’ani, the new appointee was handed the mandate to head the Directorate of Information.
“This is to inform you that you have been appointed to head the Directorate of Information following the retirement of the previous holder of that office,” read the letter.
The Principal Secretary (PS) congratulated Mr. Kipkoech for his appointment, wishing him the best on his new assignment, which he said calls for dedication and commitment.
The new Director of Information brings into the office a wealth of experience, following decades of dedicated service from a junior Information Officer in the Ministry and rising through the ranks at the Kenya News Agency (KNA) section.
He joined the Public Service in 1991 and served in the then-Baringo, Narok, and Embu districts, now counties. He has also served as Head of Kenya News Agency in Nairobi, besides working briefly as the Public Communications Officer for the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum as well as The National Treasury and Economic Planning.
Kipkoech holds a Master of Arts Degree in International Studies from the University of Nairobi, where he also obtained a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and Government and a Postgraduate Diploma in International Relations.
He also holds a Postgraduate Diploma in Mass Communication and a Postgraduate Certificate in Mass Communication from the Kenya Institute of Mass Communication, Nairobi.
Kipkoech was voted the best writer by the Kenya Union of Journalists in 2004, while serving in Baringo, and again, he emerged as the best employee of the Ministry of Information in 2007, while working at the Embu station.
On her part, Ms. Kinuthia, who rose to the helm of the Department of Information in October 2021, retires after taking the state News Agency through a major technological transition at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
She hangs her boots after serving in various capacities in government circles, including a short stint as a Public Communications Officer, across government ministries.
Information Secretary Judy Munyinyi acknowledged her enormous contribution to the Civil Service in a letter and wished her well in her retirement.
Kinuthia, on her part, called for cooperation among staff as she passed the baton to the incoming Director Joseph Kipkoech, during a brief handing-over ceremony.
She challenged staff members to remain steadfast and always exercise professionalism, while executing their duties to ensure that they achieved the collective targets of the Directorate.
The outgoing Director called on Information Officers to be the mouthpiece of government at the grassroots level and on the national stage by gathering, processing, packaging, and disseminating vital information services to enable the government to meet the needs of the citizens, including the bottom-up transformational agenda.
Kinuthia, also commended staff for their tremendous commitments and exemplary service during her tenure, calling for more retooling of the officers in tandem with the changing technology and policy environment so as to enhance their performance, sharpen their skills in the ever-changing globalization and to remain relevant in the growing and the vibrant media industry and landscape.
She added that it was prudent for the staff to be periodically engaged in refresher courses and workshops to understand more about government policies, programmes, and projects and finally polish their abilities for effective delivery of government services.
Kinuthia emphasised the importance of being in conformity with the new media industry and the digital platforms, which have almost eclipsed the traditional print media and electronic media in conveying news and information services in real-time.
By Joseph Kamolo