MCAs ignore court order, sack clerk over misuse of funds

Siaya County Assembly Clerk Felix Olwero (centre) with Seme MP James Nyikal at a past function. Olwero has been sacked by the Assembly over funds misuse. [Standard]
Siaya County Assembly has sacked Assembly Clerk, Felix Olwero, despite a court order barring them from taking any disciplinary action against him.

The MCAs, yesterday endorsed a report recommending Mr Olwero’s sacking over alleged misconduct.

A Nairobi Employment and Labour court had on June 13 directed that the County Assembly should not take any disciplinary action against the clerk until a suit he had filed was heard and determined on July 7, 2019.

The court also directed that case will be heard before a judge in Kisumu.

In a ruling by Justice Onesmus Makau the defence was given 10 days to respond to both the motion and petition.

On June 7, 2019, the Employment and Labour court received a petition from the clerk who had requested for conservatory orders restraining the County Assembly and the Board from advertising, recruiting, approving, appointing or employing any person in the position of either clerk or secretary of the Siaya Public Service Board.

The clerk had also asked the court that the process initiated by the Assembly to revoke his appointment be stayed and he be allowed to continue with executing his duties as a clerk.

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But yesterday, the defiant MCAs, passed a report revoking the clerk’s appointment.

The Assembly further directed that a letter of dismissal be written and mode of recovering the balance of Sh800,000  from the clerk be prescribed.

The Assembly also directed that investigations be conducted into the conduct of county finance officer Christopher Okuthe.

On Wednesday, the clerk appeared before the select committee where he defended himself against misappropriation of funds and abuse of office allegations that led to his suspension three months ago.

Olwero is being accused of embezzling public funds where he is said to have signed a cheque and irregularly authorised transfers of Sh2 million from the Assembly car loan and mortgage account to his personal account through a questionable procedure.

He is also accused of concealment and non-disclosure of financial information contrary to section 198 (i) (c) of the PFM Act, 2012 and section 23 of public officer Ethics Act 2003.

Mr. Olwero is further alleged to have used his position as the accounting officer and signatory to the car loan and mortgage account to avoid to swindle public cash.

Olwero however said that he has been servicing the loan since 2015 and is yet to pay Sh800,000.

Mr Olwero asked the assembly to furnish him with banks and financial statements and audit committee report to respond to some of the queries raised.

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Felix OlweroSiaya County AssemblyEmployment and Labour courtSiaya County