The Kenya Electricity Transmission Company (Ketraco) has selected Dr. John Mativo as its new Managing Director, as announced by Ketraco board chairman Abdi Duale on Tuesday. Mativo, an experienced engineer and acting General Manager of project services, emerged as the top candidate out of a pool of 194 applicants, surpassing eight other finalists.
Effective April 24, 2023, Dr. Mativo will serve a three-year term, with the possibility of a single renewal based on performance and civil service retirement age stipulations, according to a Ketraco statement. Mativo succeeds Fernandes Barasa, who stepped down as Ketraco’s managing director in February of last year to pursue a gubernatorial bid in Kakamega. Antony Wamukota then assumed the acting Managing Director position, followed by Engineer Isaac Kiva in January of this year.
Engineer Kiva, the Secretary for Renewable Energy in the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum, had been temporarily assigned to Ketraco to oversee the recruitment process for a new Managing Director. With the appointment of Dr. Mativo, Kiva has now returned to his primary role within the ministry.
Ketraco expressed confidence in Dr. Mativo’s ability to provide strong leadership and effective resource management, given his service to the company since 2010. Mativo’s extensive experience and knowledge of the organization are expected to guide the development of plans and strategies that will bolster sustainable socio-economic growth for the nation.
Dr. Mativo holds a PhD in Civil Engineering from Tokyo Metropolitan University, Japan, a Master’s degree in Civil Engineering from Tongji University, China, and a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering from the University of Nairobi. Before joining Ketraco, he worked with H.P. Gauff Consulting Engineer, the Ministry of Roads and Public Works, and later as a consultant for European Union-funded projects within local government.
Mativo’s appointment comes amid ongoing reforms in Kenya’s power sector aimed at providing affordable and stable electricity for households and businesses. As Managing Director, he will oversee the transition of the system operator role from Kenya Power to Ketraco, granting Ketraco control over the energy mix fed into the grid. Additionally, Mativo will facilitate the transfer of Kenya Power’s transmission assets to Ketraco, a process initiated last year with the valuation of the assets to enable their transfer.