By Sylvester Mwaringa
UK-based NGO Crown Agents has unveiled a strategic change to its Kenyan operations by opening new offices in the Nairobi area. This is a chess move to elevate Kenyan experts to spearheading its global operations.
The NGO which supplied locomotives to Kenya’s very first railway lines, boasted of the tripling of its Nairobi staff in December, appointing Kenyan professionals to manage part of its global strategy and programmes. Crown Agents appointed Nairobi as the nerve centre to oversee global recruitment of its manpower as well as its global fund management strategy. To manage its increased staff, Crown Agents Kenya is now moving to larger offices in the Green House in Ngong Road.
The 190-yr old development NGO first opened its Nairobi offices in the 60’s and has been at the fore-front in recent health reforms programmes both locally and in the international space.
Crown Agents Kenya – the Kenyan subsidiary – is currently working closely with the Governments of Kenya and Jersey to reinvest the Ksh450 million proceeds of corruption seized from Windward Trading in 2016. Through the Framework for the Return of Assets from Corruption and Crime in Kenya (FRACCK), an asset recovery programme – Crown Agents Kenya was one of the two third-party suppliers selected to supervise the reinvestment of these funds into the health sector through the procurement of medical equipment.
This follows from Crown Agents Kenya taking a lead role in tackling Neglected Tropical Diseases by facilitating the administration of 8.5 million treatments against Schistosomiasis (Schisto) and Soil Transmitted Helminths (STH) across the world.
Last year, Crown Agents Kenya in collaboration with philanthropists and the Irish and Japanese Governments delivered over 4.5 million pieces of assorted PPE, ventilators, oxygen concentrators and other medical equipment to hospitals in support of Kenya’s fight against COVID-19.
The move postdates the appointment of the former board chairman of Starehe Boys School, David Mureithi, to Crown Agents’ global Board of Directors in 2021.