Four Nairobi MCAs suspended over gross misconduct

Nairobi County sergeant at arms prevents MCAs from forcefully evicting Speaker Beatrice Elachi from office. [Beverlyne Musili/Standard]
Four Nairobi MCAs have been suspended from the county assembly over alleged gross misconduct last year.

Nominated MCA Mary Ariviza has been suspended for 21 calendar days, while nominated MCAs Mary Njambi of the famed ‘Piri piri Kwa macho’ rant, Laura Mwende and Nancy Muthami have each been suspended for 10 days.

The suspensions was as a result of a report tabled by the Nairobi Assembly Powers and Privileges Committee on Wednesday that recommended measures be taken on the members.

“The committee recommends that the members be suspended from the assembly for the said days for conducting themselves in a manner intended and is likely to reflect adversely on the dignity or integrity of the county assembly, contrary to the county assemblies powers and privileges act 2017,” stated the report tabled by committee vice chair, Naftaly Mathenge.

The committee, in its report, observed that on September 10 when Speaker Beatrice Elachi was forcefully evicted from office, MCAs Mary Njambi, Laura Mwende and Nancy Muthami acted in a disorderly manner that was not supposed to be portrayed by a county assembly member.

“Elachi had on that morning called for a press conference and it was during the said press briefing that members got into her office and a fracas ensued shortly thereafter,” read the report in part.

“By shouting, hurling insults and generally being disorderly, members conducted themselves in ways worth inquiry and recommendation of appropriate sanction.”

It also highlighted that on the said morning, a meeting had been convened by members but it was difficult to ascertain the agenda of the said meeting and whether there was a conspiracy to evict the speaker.

On Mary Ariviza’s case, it was brought to the fore that on September 25, she violently protested her nomination as the county acting speaker by minority chief whip Peter Imwatok. She also protested the ouster of her close associate Speaker Elachi.

 
Mrs. Ariviza later started rolling on the floor of the house, dramatically shouting that she was pro-Elachi, forcing her to be dragged out by the sergeant at arms.

“The presiding chair had repeatedly ordered the member out of the chambers but she disobeyed. Her failure to obey the speaker’s orders necessitated the presiding chair to invite sergeant at arms to throw the member out,” stated the report.

During the tabling of the report, members from the Jubilee and NASA factions got into a heated debate on the fate of the members.

Minority leader, Elias Otieno supported the motion saying that no member had been coerced to behave in a disorderly manner and they did so out of their own volition.

“Everyone should carry their own cross and should be held accountable for their own actions,” he said.

Highrise MCA Kennedy Oyugi however opposed the report saying that both the Majority leader (Abdi Guyo) and minority leader (Elias Otieno) should also have been punished because they were aware of the members’ intent to behave in a disorderly manner.

“I want to plead with the house to pardon the members because we all know they were not acting in their own interests. The punishment is too harsh,” he said.

Vice Chair Mathenge however said that the punishment was arrived at in line with the standing orders and advise from lawyers.

“The members were all invited to the committee for fair hearing during the investigations so I do not consider the punishment harsh,” added Mathenge.

The suspended members who were present during the sitting apologized to the house and were escorted out shortly after.

Nairobi MCAscounty assemblygross misconduct