Dr. Monica Juma is the Cabinet Secretary in the Ministry of Defence of the Republic of Kenya. She oversees the execution of the mandate of the Ministry which is to defend and protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the Republic of Kenya.
Dr.Juma is in charge of the overall defence policy formulation, guidance and implementation. She chairs the Defence Council which is responsible for overall control, policy and direction of the Kenya Defence Forces. She is a member of the National Security Council and advices the President and the National Assembly on any matter relating to the Defence Forces.
As the current Minister in charge of Defence in Kenya, she is the Chair of the Contact Group on Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS), 2020-2021, an international governance mechanism established in New York on January 14, 2009 to facilitate the discussion and coordination of actions among states and organizations to suppress Somali piracy.
Dr. Juma was appointed the Cabinet Secretary for Defence in January 2020 and moved from the Ministry of Foreign affairs, where she had served as Cabinet Secretary between 2018-2020.
During her stint at the MFA, Dr. Juma led Kenya’s diplomatic corps in projecting, promoting, protecting and pursuing the national interests of the Republic of Kenya across the world.
Before serving at the helm of Kenya’s diplomacy, Dr. Juma was the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government (2014-2015).
In the Interior docket, she drove transformation and reforms in the national security sector. She also initiated work that led to the development of Kenya’s strategy on Counter-terrorism, violent extremism and the creation of the multi-agency approach in tackling security challenges in general, and terrorism in particular. Collectively, these measures significantly reduced Kenya’s vulnerability to terrorist attacks and restored security across the country.
Prior to being at the Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government, Dr Juma was the Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Defence (2013-2014) where she was instrumental in strengthening the business process systems within the Ministry, clarifying the defence strategic orientation and bolstering the professional stature of the Kenya Defence Forces.
Before her appointment to the executive, Dr. Juma was Ambassador Extra-Ordinary and Plenipotentiary of Kenya to Ethiopia and Djibouti, and Permanent Representative of Kenya to the African Union, the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) and United Nations Commission for Africa (UNECA), between June 2010 and July 2013. Among the key efforts during this time was the negotiations for the re-hatting of the Kenya Defence Forces into the African Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).