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Confusion at Kisumu County Assembly as two clerks fight for office

By Harold Odhiambo | Published Wed, June 7th 2017 at 00:00, Updated June 6th 2017 at 20:59 GMT +3


Kisumu county assembly clerk Ben Opiyo. [Photo by COLLINS ODUOR/Standard]

With only days remaining before the end of its term, the troubled county assembly is embroiled in another supremacy tussle over office space.

With two clerks now working at the assembly, the execution of duties at the assembly has been thrown into disarray.

Both Phillip Adundo and Ben Opiyo claim to be legitimately in office and have vowed to continue with their duties, as a result throwing workers into confusion on who to report to.

Mr Adundo reported back to work on Monday after completing a six-month suspension over claims that he had mismanaged assembly resources.

And yesterday, the two continued to fight for control of the office as Mr Opiyo vowed to stay put, claiming he was given the mandate by the Assembly Service Board to serve as the clerk. The two are now sharing the same office, with Adundo vowing to evict Opiyo.

But assembly Speaker Ann Adul said they did not recognise Adundo, adding that he was still under suspension. “Mr Adundo is not authorised to work from that office because we have not cleared him. He remains suspended,” she said. Ms Adul noted Opiyo was the officially recognised clerk, authorised to handle the assembly’s official documents.

Adundo, who challenged his suspension in court early this year, told The Standard that he reported back after the board failed to prove their allegations against him despite the six-month suspension.

“I waited for six months but they failed to prove any case against me and now that my suspension is over, I am back to work as the clerk,” said Adundo.

Early this year, the two ran parallel offices with Adundo working from the office at the assembly premises, while Opiyo was reportedly carrying out administrative duties from the governor’s office.

This was after unruly youths blocked Opiyo from taking over from Adundo. On his part, Opiyo said he would continue to serve as the clerk until further notice. 

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