SECTIONS

Deputy governors aren't happy campers and something must be done to save them from their bosses

Flag on a government official's car, Nairobi, April 7, 2020. [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

When it comes to getting easily excited, no one beats Kenyans. Ironically, they also get annoyed at the slightest provocation. They really know how to work themselves into a rage.

And so, when devolution came, there was overall excitement, and that can be said was understandable considering that they had fought for several years to have the Constitution changed, and, boy, did it come with appendages!

Needless to say that many Kenyans had not, nay, did not, read the draft, and were being guided by their favourite politicians to vote in its favour or against it.

But the naysayers lost, and so the 2010 Constitution came with several appendages like counties, MCAs, governors and their deputies. 

The voters and the political leaders never took time to understand the nuances of these positions, and how office holders will relate, especially in the offices of the governor.

In certain counties, trouble between the governor and the deputy started brewing immediately the pioneers were sworn in, and the most the bosses could do was strip the deputy of the roles they had been assigned, but not fire them.

So, the bad blood continued boiling and when the time for 2017 polls came, new running mates were picked, and after voting, new enemies were created as certain governors and their deputies started fighting, and the latter were stripped of the roles but remained in office. So, they were ideally doing nothing but getting paid by the taxpayer nonetheless.

Thus, the excitement that devolution brought is leading to tears since DGs feel that they are only used in the equation of getting votes; balancing clan and sub-tribe loyalties and then they get dumped or are not backed when they want to contest for the governor position.

Probably the drafters of the Constitution did not envisage such a situation or hoped it would bring cohesiveness, but whatever the case, something needs to be done to bring peace–even if it will only make us more excited.