City lawyer Florence Muoti Mwangangi is the new Speaker of Machakos County Assembly.
Ms Mwangangi won the coveted seat in the first round of voting after garnering a total of 41 votes out of the possible 59. She beat former Speaker, Bernard Mung’ata who managed 18 votes.
Her win was a culmination of intensive lobbying by both Wiper and Maendeleo Chap Chap parties, which had been secretly wooing both elected and nominated MCAs to vote their preferred candidates.
Ms Mwangangi was fronted by Wiper-whose leader is NASA deputy presidential candidate, Kalonzo Musyoka while Mung’ata was a project of Maendeleo Chap Chap led by Governor Alfred Mutua.
The new county assembly boss, who was a former member of the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) and former Chair of Public Complaints Commission, is described by those who know her as ‘a no-nonsense technocrat.’ She also runs a private law firm in Nairobi, Mwangangi and Company Advocates.
Addressing the assembly moments after her election, Ms Mwangangi pledged to uphold the rule of law while overseeing the House business. “The electorate expects us to be accountable, honest and mindful about their welfare, and it is our duty and responsibility to deliver that to the latter,” she said.
She urged MCAs to familiarize with Standing Orders in order to ensure smooth operations and debates. She also called on MCAs who will become chairpersons of various committees to observe integrity and uphold dignity of the positions that their mandate demands.
The second county assembly of Machakos also saw a comeback of former Kangundo MP, Moffat Maitha who was sworn in as the elected representative of Matungulu West Ward.
Virtually all MCAs are newcomers, save for Tala Ward County representative, Alex Kamitu who was re-elected through Maendeleo Chap Chap party ticket. Governor Alfred Mutua, who was conspicuously absent in the assembly will have to content with running a minority government as majority slots in the assembly went to Wiper.
However, Chama Cha Uzalendo party secretary general Philippe Saja claimed Wiper party, which had entered into a coalition with CCU short-changed it (CCU) with regard to nomination of candidates for the position of the Speaker.
“It is unfortunate that Wiper refused to stick to the Memorandum of Understanding which we entered into that required CCU to produce the next Speaker of the county assembly,” Saja told The Standard in an interview.