Tourism CS Najib Balala has appointed KTN journalist Najma Ismail as Tourism Regulatory Authority Board member to replace Pauline Njoroge whose appointment was revoked today following massive public critism after it emerged that she held a controversial view regarding the existence of the Nairobi National Park.
In a statement on Saturday, Tourism CS Hon Balala said the integrity of the Nairobi National Park is very important and the government is committed to save it and any other protected area which is the habitat for our national heritage and wildlife.
Njoroge’s woes hit home when a post she previously shared on social media came back to haunt her.
In the Facebook post, she said the only selling point for the park was that it was the only national park in a capital city in the world.
She was responding to calls to reroute the Standard Gauge Railway to save the park, which according to her was a lost cause as the park is “economically redundant”.
“The only national park in a capital city in the world, beyond that glamourous title, what else doe it offer? The orphanage and the nature walk make economic sense, but the park?” Njoroge wrote.
In the statement, Balala said, “We are revoking Pauline Njoroge’s appointment as a board member of Tourism Regulatory Authority with immediate effect, and replacing her with Najma Ismail.”
Cancelling Njoroge’s appointment, CS Balala said at the time when she made the appointment he and his team was unaware of Pauline’s stand on the value of the park.
The Tourism CS said the ministry officials had not seen what Njoroge had posted in the past. “We do not want to be associated with such people and such thinking.”
Speaking on the sidelines of the official launch of domestic tourism campaign at the Masai Mara, Balala said the appointment painted the ministry in bad light.
He thanked the public for bringing to his attention Njoroge’s remarks.
Pauline Njoroge will most likely be appointed to another board given her close relations with top Statehouse operatives.