Mt Kenya counties yet to fill crucial posts

Nyeri governor Mutahi Kahiga (left) is shown some of the drugs supplied by Kemsa, March 28, 2018. [Photo: Mose Sammy, Standard]
Several Mt Kenya counties have yet to fill crucial posts seven months after the General Election.

Our survey showed that counties with new governors were the most affected by the vacuums in the top leadership.

In Nyeri, Governor Mutahi Kahiga has sent the names of two women to the county assembly in a bid to complete the constitution of the government started by his predecessor, Wahome Gakuru, who died in a road accident last November.

A new Act of Parliament has allowed Mr Kahiga to appoint a deputy and he has nominated corporate executive Caroline Wanjiru Karugu.

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But Kahiga will have to defend, in court, a decision to lock out Sheila Githaiga, 65, from his county executive committee. Ms Githaiga sued the governor after last week’s nomination of Esther Ndung’u for the youth, gender, sports, and social services docket.

Laikipia is another county with an incomplete cabinet, with Governor Ndiritu Muriithi running his administration with five county executive committee members after the county assembly rejected three of his eight nominees.

The five were approved on October 20 but the nominees for the health, education, and administration dockets were rejected.

Chief officers

The county boss has yet to name new chief officers because he has not presented 12 nominees to the assembly.

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He explained that he had delayed the appointment of new officers to allow the incumbents to complete their contracts.

In Meru, Governor Kiraitu Murungi has not recruited two chief officers and 10 sub-county administrators despite having been in office for eight months.

County Secretary Rufus Miriti said the administration was in the process of hiring 10 sub-county administrators.

When the governor assumed office, he suspended the sub-county and ward administrators hired by his predecessor, Peter Munya.

However, after four months, the ward officers were given back their jobs while sub-county administrators have been designated to peripheral posts.

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In Murang’a, Governor Mwangi wa Iria has yet to submit his nominee for the cooperative development docket after he abruptly withdrew the name of Edward Muiruri last December.

The county government has not announced any nominees to fill four vacant positions of chief officers. Only 12 chief officers were vetted and approved by the county assembly. 

Tharaka Nithi County has not recruited a chief officer in charge of medical services after the nominee failed to turn up for vetting.

Governor Muthomi Njuki said Davies Karambi opted out because his employer declined to release him. The county government is battling a lawsuit filed by village administrators it had sought to sack soon after taking over.

Other county governments in the region, including Kiambu, Embu, and Kirinyaga, have fully constituted their governments.

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[Report by Alan Mungai, Jacinta Mutura, Darlington Manyara, Boniface Gikandi, Dickson Mwiti and Alan Mungai]

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