James Keter appointed Director General

The Board of Directors appointed Mr James Keter Chumba through legal transition to be the substantive Director General for three years effective October 12, 2023. 

The appointment is in accordance with Section 99 (2)(b) of Transition Provisions of the Nuclear Regulatory Act, No. 29 of 2019. 

Mr. Keter has been serving as the Acting Director General of KNRA since March 2, 2023. The board and KNRA employees take this early opportunity to congratulate Mr. Keter. He has served for more than 20 years as a regulator in the former Radiation Protection Board and has risen through the ranks to be at the top management of the Authority.

“We have set our sights on target. Together with the competent KNRA team, we will do our best to execute the mandate of the authority which is protection of persons and the environment,” Mr Keter said.

The Director General Mr. James Keter Chumba in the company of the Chairman Hon. Edick Anyanga,Ag. Director Compliance Mr. John Opar and Principal Supply Chain Management Officer Ms. Catherine Juka during a press conference on his appointment
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Kenya to host Postgraduate Educational Course(PGEC) on Radiation Protection and the Safety of Radiation Sources for African English-speaking Countries

Kenya has been given the go ahead to host the IAEA PGEC course after a visit by IAEA team of experts, that had been deployed to assess Kenya’s preparedness for the programme.The objective of the course is to provide foundation training in radiation protection and the safety of radiation sources. It is designed to provide both theoretical and practical training in the multidisciplinary scientific and/or technical bases of international recommendations and standards on radiation protection and their implementation.

Kenya will be the second country in Africa to host the programme for English-speaking after Ghana which has hosted the programme 12 times. The five-month course targets professionals at the graduate level or equivalent and will start in October 2023.

The Kenya Nuclear Regulatory Authority (KNRA) will be the host of the programme and will oversee preparations in a process where KEBS, Kenyatta University,Kenyatta University Teaching and Refferral Hospital, local education Intitutions and medical institutions will take lead roles.

IAEA visiting experts Sotiris Economides of Greece and Ghana’s Prof Augustine Faanu who had led the weeklong pre-course assessment presented their findings to KNRA Director General James Keter, Director Licensing and Standards Shadrack Kiti, Director for Partnerships and Public Awareness Edward Mayaka, Dr Sitawa Wattanga representing Multimedia University, Dr Nadir Hashim of Kenyatta University and guests from the Kenya Bureau of Standards,Kenyatta National Hospital and the Nuclear Power and Energy Agency (NuPEA).

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KNRA agrees on a partnership with Excel Services Corporation

Kenya Nuclear Regulatory Authority (KNRA) has agreed on a working partnership with Excel Services Corpoartion, a leading US nuclear company.Excel Services Corporation supports nuclear energy producers and regulators and focuses on programmes to improve safety and security. Its expertise includes feasibility studies, site selection and environmental assessment.

During the visit by Excel Services Corporation CEO Donald Hoffman, among issues discussed was on ways to tap into Excel Services Corporation expertise in key areas, including improving regulatory safeguards. On his part Mr. Hoffmann commented on the importance of Nuclear programme stock taking in bid to succeed in the future. He said the Excel Services Corporations will work with Kenya and other regulators in the region, starting with technology assessments, to achieve effective regulation. He warned that weak guidelines would inevitably reverse the gains made in nuclear safety.

The meeting was hosted by the Chairman Hon. Edick E.O Anyanga and the Director General Mr. James Keter. Hon. Anyanga described the meeting as a breakthrough and Kenya was open to learning from industry leaders. “Your partnership with us is timely. We will work closely together and are ready to sign all the necessary documents so that we can hit the ground running,” he said. On his part, Mr Keter stressed the importance of effective regulation, saying it helps build public confidence in nuclear programmes.

Also in attendance were Mr. John Opar, Mr. Shadrack Kiti the Director Compliance and Director Licensing and Standards respectively and Ms. Tracy Kabochi, Deputy Director for Legal Affairs. Mr Kiti made a presentation detailing the achievements and challenges of the authority’s work, including resource constraints, as it recently embarked on drafting its regulations.

A photograph taken during the meeting held in the KNRA’s Boardroom at the Head Office in KASNEB Towers II
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KNRA joins Africa in Commemorating the 14th Anniversary of the African Nuclear Weapon Free Zone Treaty (The Pelindaba Treaty)

The African Commission on Nuclear Energy (Afcone) on 15th July celebrated the 14th anniversary of the entry into force of the Treaty of Pelindaba, an agreement that establishes Africa as a zone free of Nuclear Weapons

The commemoration event, took place in Nairobi, Kenya, with attendance from Kenya Nuclear Regulatory Authority(KNRA), Nuclear Power and Energy Agency (NuPEA), The Ministry of Energy and dignitaries from Kenya and Africa.The objective of the event was to reflect, on the achievements and challenges in implementing the Treaty’s objectives, and the prospects for African development through the agency of nuclear energy. The event called on Africa’s sustainability and independence in having more access to the benefits of nuclear energy to address urgent continental priorities such as energy poverty, food security, human health, and environmental protection.

The Director General James Keter Chumba, who delivered the opening remarks, reiterated how
Kenya was privileged to host the event. As it will provide a strong foundation in work together to create a safety-oriented mindset
“The benefits of nuclear technology have increased tremendously over the years, especially in meeting
energy needs, tackling the problem of poverty, food insecurity and environmental threats”.Mr Keter added.

The Keynote speech was delivered by Energy CS representative, Wycliffe Ogallo who called for more forums to allow for the exchange of ideas on how to ensure nuclear weapons and technology are not used in Africa.
Other speakers at the event included AFCONE Executive Secretary H.E Mr. Enobot Agboraw, AFCONE’s commissioner from DR Congo H.E Commissioner Gracien Bakambo Ekoko and Acting NuPEA CEO Justus Wabuyabo.

The Treaty of Pelindaba has its origins in July 1964 in Cairo (Egypt), at the first ordinary session of Heads of State and Government of the Organization of African Unity, during which a resolution known as the Cairo declaration was adopted, to ban, through an international agreement, all manifestations of nuclear weapons in Africa.The Treaty entered into force on 15 July 2009, including the establishment of the African Commission on Nuclear Energy (AFCONE) as an autonomous Pan-African organization
to oversee the implementation of the Treaty.

(from left)The AFCONE Executive Secretary H.E Mr. Enobot Agboraw, Amb. Jean Kamau EBS, Ambassador to Ethiopia and Permanent Rep. to AU and UNECA,Mr. James Keter Ag. Director General (KNRA) and Mr. Justus Wabuyabo Ag. CEO NuPEA.

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KNRA Chairman and Director General Meet Principal Secretary Mary Muthoni Muriuki

The Ministry of Health is committed to supporting the Kenya Nuclear Regulatory Authority (KNRA) in their efforts to ensure the efficient, safe, secure, and peaceful utilization of atomic energy and nuclear technology in Kenya. This includes the regulation of radioactive materials, radiation sources, and nuclear technology for various sectors such as medicine, agriculture, industry, research, telecommunications, and nuclear-generated electricity.

Principal Secretary Mary Muthoni Muriuki had a productive meeting with the Chairman, Hon Peter E.O Anyanga, and Director General Mr. James Chumba. The discussion primarily focused on the authority’s roadmap to 2027.

The Principal Secretary expressed the Ministry’s commitment to supporting KNRA’s Strategic Priority Areas. This support is essential in enhancing KENRA’s contribution to creating a safer Kenya and achieving Universal Health Coverage (UHC). Through collaborative efforts, the Ministry aims to ensure that the utilization of atomic energy and nuclear technology aligns with national and international standards.

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KNRA Hosts National Workshop on Performing Safety Culture Self-Assessments for the Regulatory Body.

The workshop which was held from 10th- 14th July 2023 brought together experts from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and KNRA as well as various National operators.

The Workshop highlighted the Need for Safety Culture Self-Assessment and why regulatory bodies need to assess their own safety culture in line with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) guidance on regulatory safety culture self-assessment.Alson in discussion was the Approaches to Designing and Conducting Safety Culture Self-assessments. The Presentations can be accessed from the following links

The five day National Workshop was opened by KNRA’s Director of Licensing and Standards Mr. Shadrack Kiti.

A group photo of the team comprising experts from KNRA, IAEA and the National operators

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RAF Regional Meeting on IAEA Safety Standards and Implementation of the Code of Conduct on The Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources

RAF Regional Meeting on IAEA Safety Standards and Implementation of the Code of Conduct on The Safety and Security of Radioactive Sources. Was held in Nairobi from 19 – 23rd June 2023.

The forum, hosted by the KNRA and the IAEA, took stock of successes and failures in the recommendations, with fresh calls to governments to make binding commitments to international decrees on nuclear safety. Countries participating in the talks included Libya, Algeria, Ethiopia, Ghana, Lesotho, Nigeria, Senegal, Zambia, Benin and Cameroon. The KNRA, a successor to the Radiation Protection Board, is charged with protecting people, property and the environment from the harmful effects of radiation.

The forum noted political goodwill was key in protection of lives and property through safe utilization of nuclear technologies, especially in health, security and energy.

The regional meeting rallied countries to uphold the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) safety guide and code of conduct. The IAEA code prescribes the safeguards countries must abide by.

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Foundational Infrastructure for Responsible Use of Small Modular Reactor Technology (FIRST) Study Tour for Ghana and Kenya took place on 13th – 25th May 2013.

The Kenyan Delegation was led by the PS Energy Mr. Alex Wachira, Nyeri Senator Sen. Wahome Wamatinga , KNRA Board Chairman Hon.. Edick E.O Anyanga. Also In attendance  were NUPEA CEO Eng. Collins Juma and the  Director General  KNRA, Mr.  James Keter

The study tour provided participants with;

(i) hands-on examples of scientific and engineered measures focused on two major global security themes: 1) technical support for treaty verification and 2) securing chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosive (CBRNE) materials.

(ii)  an integrated nuclear security system including mock facilities that demonstrate the graded approach and will soon be updated to include a mock SMR (SMART)

– Integrated Security Facility (ISF)

– Sandia Pulse Reactor (SPR)

– Gamma Irradiating Facility (GIF)

(iii) SNL’s current research into thermal-to-electric power conversion technology in a configuration called the recompression closed Brayton cycle (RCBC) that uses sCO2 as the working fluid, rather than steam.

(IV)  how delay mechanisms are created and the latest developments in physical delay, as SMR plants will likely need enhanced delay mechanisms in their physical security systems because of smaller plant size and off-site response forces

The Kenyan delegation also held a Meeting with Interagency Partners:

– U.S. Department of Energy

– U.S. Department of Commerce

– U.S. Trade and Development Agency

– National Nuclear Security Administration

The Kenyan delegation held a bilateral meeting with NRC Chair Hanson on NRC International Activities among others.

The Kenyan delegation led by the Principal Secretary, Ministry of Energy & Petroleum, State Department of Energy in December , Kenya Nuclear Regulatory Chairman Hon. Edick E.O Anyanga,NuPEA CEO Eng. Collins Juma and the Director General Mr. James Keter Chumba
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The Kenya Nuclear Regulatory Authority (KNRA)  hosted Hazardous Material (HAZMAT) advance course participants from the Kenya Defence Forces Disaster Response Battalion (DRB)) to familiarize themselves with the Organization and its operations in Oloolua, Kajiado County.

The day long conversation provided the participants an opportunity to be sharpened with the requisite knowledge and competencies in safe, secure and peaceful utilization of Nuclear technology.

Additionally, they learnt on how the authority provides regulatory control in the operationalization of radiation and nuclear technology for socio-economic development of humanity.

The visit was graced by the Board Chairman Hon. Peter E.O Anyanga, the Ag. Director General Mr. James Chumba. The team from the KDF Disaster Responce Battalion was led by Major Charles Mulei.

Hon. Anyanga, underscored the importance of partnerships between the two institutions in responding to catastrophic hazards posed by the Nuclear and Radiological materials as well as developing future platforms for exchanging programmes.

The day long exercise, saw students from the Kenya Defence Forces taken through practicals in searching, identifying and securing concealed radioactive materials.

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The Director General – Kenya Nuclear regulatory Authority invited applications, through an advertisement posted from  30th August to 13th September 2022, for pre qualification/registration of suppliers for provision of goods and services from interested eligible bidders for the period ending 30th June, 2024.

The prequalification exercise having been successfully done. The Authority would like to notify all applicants of the results herein. Kindly follow the following link to download the results on pre-qualification/registration of suppliers for supply/provision of goods and services for the period 2022-2024
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