Mohamed Yusuf Haji (Somali: Maxamed Yuusuf Xaaji) (23 December 1940 – 15 February 2021) was a Kenyan politician. He was the Minister of Defence of Kenya from 2008 to 2013, and briefly served as its acting Minister of Internal Security and Provincial Affairs in 2012. He has served in the Senate of Kenya since 2013. He died on 15 February 2021.
NAIROBI, Kenya Feb 15 – Garissa Senator Yusuf Haji is dead, his family has confirmed.
Haji, who most recently chaired the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) Taskforce has been sick for a while.
He was flown to Turkey for treatment late last year but returned to the country recently.
He passed on at the Aga Khan Hospital on Monday morning.
The career administrator and former Cabinet Minister died at the Aga Khan hospital in Nairobi on Monday morning after a long illness, his family confirmed.
He had been flown in from Turkey on Saturday where he had been since December for treatment.
A family spokesman said Haji had multiple body organ failure.
Before his admission to hospital late last year, Haji had a heap injury in his house.
Since then, according to the family, he has had to be admitted to hospitals.
Up to last year, he served as the chairman of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) taskforce.
He is the father of the Director of Public Prosecution (DPP) Noordin Haji.
He served as a District Commissioner and Provincial Commissioner for long in the old Constitution.
Top government officials flocked Aga Khan Hospital to condole the family as burial arrangements were being made.
Senator Yusuf Haji Political career
Haji began his professional career in administration and management. He joined the Provincial Administration of Kenya as a District Officer in 1960, and went on to serve as Provincial Commissioner between 1970 and 1997. He was among the eight powerful provincial commissioners who were in office during the Wagalla Massacre in February 1984.
In 1998, Haji was nominated as a member of the Kenyan Parliament. He was later elected an official Member of Parliament on a Kenya African National Union (KANU) ticket.
From 1998 to 2001, Haji worked as an Assistant Minister in the Office of the President. He subsequently acted as the Office’s Minister of State for Cabinet Affairs in 2002.
On a KANU ticket, Haji was elected to represent the Ijara Constituency in the National Assembly of Kenya at the 2007 parliamentary elections.
Minister of Defence
On 8 January 2008, Haji was appointed Kenya’s Minister of State for Defence after the 27 December 2007 general elections.
On 18 October 2011, Haji and a Kenyan delegation met with Transitional Federal Government of Somalia (TFG) officials in Mogadishu to discuss security issues cooperation against the Islamist Al-Shabaab group as part of the coordinated Operation Linda Nchi. Haji and Somalia’s Minister of Defence Hussein Arab Isse then signed an agreement to collaborate against the insurgent group.
In early June 2012, Haji signed another agreement officially re-hatting Kenya’s deployed military forces in Somalia under the AMISOM general command.
Haji’s term as Minister of Defence ended on 26 April 2013.
Minister of Internal Security
On 18 June 2012, Haji was appointed Kenya’s acting Minister of Internal Security and Provincial Affairs after the incumbent minister George Saitoti died in a helicopter crash a few days earlier. Haji had previously worked closely with Saitoti on the Linda Nchi military operation. Haji held the new position concurrently with the Minister of Defence docket until a permanent Internal Minister was appointed on 21 September 2012
(This is a developing story and will be updated)
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