Kenya steps up corporate governance

Kenya is seeking to step up corporate governance in the capital market and guard against risks that threaten the financial system. The Capital Markets Authority ( has announced today (11 January) that it has appointed a 9-member Capital Markets Corporate Governance Committee.
CMA Acting Chief Executive Paul Muthaura commented in a press release: “Since the issuance of the ‘Guidelines to Corporate Governance Practices by Listed Companies’ in 2002, there have been several developments nationally, regionally, and internationally precipitating the need for special attention to be paid to corporate governance to guard against risks that would threaten the financial system. Recent marketplace activities have pointed to the need to review the appropriateness of our regulatory regimes in light of the complexity of the challenges before us to ensure that we succeed in striking appropriate balances and manage costs of compliance.”
He said the committee should guide regular reviews of corporate governance standards for listed companies, in line with international best practice and trends; drive amendments to the corporate governance guidelines and regulations; identify legal and institutional strengthening requirements; address weaknesses in enforcement; and strengthen capacity building and professionalism of key stakeholders.
Ms Catherine Musakali, current chair of the Institute of Certified Public Secretaries of Kenya,will chair the committee and the members are: Ms Maryanne Macheru of the Registrar of Companies/Attorney General’s Office; Ms. Jackline Nyandege of the Ethics and Integrity Institute, nominated by the State Corporations Advisory Committee; Mr. Job Kihumba representing the Nairobi Securities Exchange; Rev. Geoffrey Njenga from the Centre for Corporate Governance; Mr. Mirie Mwangi from the University of Nairobi Business School; Mr. Mahmood Manji representing the CMA Board; Dr. Gituro Wainanina appointed as an independent member with experience on Corporate Governance from a regulatory perspective; and Mr James Mworia representing listed companies.

5 Responses to “Kenya steps up corporate governance”

  1. rob stangroom

    This article does not state how or what corporate governance is to be improved. “several developments”, “risks” that threaten the financial system,”regular reviews”,”drive amendments”. Is it possible to provide more insight? What is on their agenda initially?

  2. Tom Minney

    Thanks for the questions, maybe the CMA or the new committee would answer? I will add further if I hear any more. Tom

  3. Nat OFO

    This is a welcome development; especially so since the Kenyan “Guidelines to Corporate Governance Practices by Listed Companies” 2002 is inadequate in addressing contemporary corporate governance issues. Some specific areas of deficiency include independent directors: adequacy of definition of independent directors and number on boards; adequacy of gender diversity provision; absence of whistle-blowing provision; external auditors’ independence; and sustainability and csr issues.

  4. Rachel Kasumba

    Tom, good news. Definately a first step in the right direction. Ultimately, it is the implementation’s phase that usually gets bogged down in politics, or suave players seeks for ways to game the system.

  5. Tom Minney

    Dear Corporate Prof Nat, thanks for your insights. I hope the CMA and this new corporate governance body will be seized of the need to draw up a far-reaching agenda. Good corporate governance makes a big difference both in investor confidence (their willingness to invest and their loyalty) and to the sustainability and long-term profitability of the business concerned. We appreciate your contribution and look forward to hearing more.