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MCAs travel to Rwanda amid sharp rift on motion, budget

By Harold Odhiambo | Published Thu, June 14th 2018 at 00:00, Updated June 13th 2018 at 23:15 GMT +3
[Photo: Courtesy]

In summary

  • Speaker says trip will be educative and present opportunity for bonding
  • Some ward reps say they do not know the exact purpose of the trip and only learnt about it on Tuesday

Barely a day after chaos erupted in the county assembly over disagreements about impeaching two senior county officials, MCAs are set to travel to Rwanda and Tanzania.

The trip, whose purpose is described by senior officials as “benchmarking”, comes at a time when the assembly is embroiled in a tussle with the county executive over the budget-making process for the 2018-2019 financial year.

It also comes amid sharp divisions among the MCAs, with one faction already vowing to frustrate the debate on the motion to impeach the county Finance and Planning executives slated for next week.

Yesterday, Speaker Onyango Oloo confirmed that all 48 MCAs would travel to Rwanda for three days over the weekend, a trip he said was budgeted for.

He said the aim of the trip was to enlighten the MCAs on how Rwanda has progressed and to borrow some of the country's positive legislation for replication in Kisumu.

Exact purpose

But several MCAs told The Standard, on condition of anonymity, that they did not know the exact purpose of the trip to Rwanda, which they only learnt about on Tuesday.

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“We have not received official communication and we are hoping that the county assembly leadership will provide us with details of the trip,” said one of the MCAs.

The ward representative said they were told unofficially that they would be divided into three groups, with some visiting Arusha in Tanzania while the rest leave for Rwanda today.

The Standard could not establish the amount of money the county assembly will spend on the trip.

“There is a provision for members to benchmark and we have settled on Rwanda because they have set the pace for development,” said Mr Oloo.

He said the three-day trip would be educative and would also offer the MCAs a chance to bond, adding that the itinerary was so full that the ward reps would barely have time for themselves.

On Tuesday, more than 15 MCAs engaged in verbal exchanges, with Joachim Okech (Kondele) and Victor Rodgers (Migosi) getting into a fistfight.

Oloo said yesterday he encouraged disagreements but noted that the assembly did not condone lawlessness.

In the last county assembly, the MCAs were put on the spot by several State agencies, including the Auditor General and the Controller of Budget, over questionable trips.


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