The Kirinyaga County assembly has said the decision to impeach Governor Anne Waiguru was a last resort, claiming she is rude and has dictatorial tendencies.
According to the ward reps, the governor has never had time for them.
Supporting the move to impeach the governor when they appeared before a Senate committee on Tuesday, the MCAs portrayed Ms Waiguru as a corrupt individual who manages county public affairs as she pleases.
They said she has a dim view of the county assembly and its constitutional oversight mandate.
Mutira Ward MCA David Kinyua, who successfully moved the impeachment motion, took the witness stand to defend the move, saying the decision to kick out Ms Waiguru came as a last resort.
GOVERNOR IS RUDE
“The governor is rude. We go to her office, but she insults and walks out on us,” Mr Kinyua told the 11-member special committee that is probing allegations levelled against the governor.
The ward reps impeached the governor on June 9, accusing her of gross violation of the Constitution, the law and abuse of office.
They claim the governor has failed to deliver the state-of-the-county address and has regularly violated the procurement laws by placing her partisan staff in critical positions in the county tender committee.
During his cross-examination by the committee, Mr Kinyua said the governor had coerced the County Public Service Board to recruit her aide, Ms Pauline Kamau, as the director of administration even though she did not have the minimum qualification.
He claimed Ms Kamau was forced on the job despite there being no vacancy. He added that the person who was holding the job was more experienced and qualified than the governor’s choice.
The MCA claimed that the governor had used similar influence to have Ms Kamau and Wayne Gichira, her ICT advisor, to sit on the county tender committee, where they peddle influence for the purpose of taking care of the governor’s interests.
Led by lawyer Ndegwa Njiru, who is appearing for the county assembly, Mr Kinyua said the presence of the two on the tender committee was meant to secure Ms Waiguru’s interests in all major tenders in the county.
He said the move was illegal because as partisan staff of the governor, the law precludes them from sitting on the committee.
Mr Kinyua claimed that as a result of the presence of the two in the committee, a fictitious company by the name of Velocity Ltd has won tenders for the supply of software management system for health facilities in Kirinyaga.
The MCAs also accuse the governor of irregularly purchasing a vehicle with a loan from a local bank that was never approved by the assembly.
“The executive prepared a budget with a vote for the purchase of the vehicle as part of the development budget instead of a recurrent budget and the office of the controller of budget refused to approve it,” he said.
“Instead, the county secured a loan facility and used it to purchase the Toyota Land Cruiser for use by the governor.”
Mr Kinyua further accused the governor of having received Sh10.6 million as an imprest for a foreign trip to the US and Italy, which he claimed the governor never made.
The governor is alleged to have received Sh2.6 million in imprest on June 30, 2019, another Sh943,000 on January 8, 2020 and another Sh1.1 million on February 25 for a trip she never made.
VIOLATION OF THE CONSTITUTION
She is also accused of failing to deliver the state of county address, a claim Mr Kinyua describes as gross violation of the Constitution.
While the MCAs told the committee, which is chaired by Kakamega Senator Cleopas Malala, that the governor has never delivered the address in the past two years, the governor insists she has, including the one she delivered at a hospital.
The governor’s lawyers subjected the MCA to a barrage of questions on his understanding of the issues and in particular evidence to substantiate his claims.
Lawyers Paul Nyamodi, Andrew Karani and Kamotho Waiganjo, who are appearing for Ms Waiguru, challenged the MCA to provide any evidence linking the governor to the payments.
They demanded that he provide any bank statements or Integrated Financial Management Information Systems logs to support the payment claims.
Ms Waiguru dismissed claims that she never made the trip, insisting that she was alongside assembly Majority leader James Murango when she visited the US and Italy. She added that they were even photographed together.
The governor said the allegations are proof of abuse of the process of impeachment and power of the assembly.