NLC wants Uhuru to kick-start process of hiring new commissioners

NLC Chairman Muhammad Swazuri.

The National Land Commission (NLC) has called on President Uhuru Kenyatta to start the process of hiring new commissioners.

The tenure of the nine-member team chaired by Muhammad Swazuri ends on February 19, 2019, after the mandatory six-year term.

This comes at a time when another team - the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) is set to begin the search for a new CEO following the expiry of Halake Waqo's term.

Abigael Mbagaya, the NLC vice chairperson, has written to Uhuru through Chief of Staff Joseph Kinyua on the imminent expiry of the current team's term.

“The NLC, a constitutional commission established under Article 67, was sworn into office on February 20, 2013, and the term of the current commission comes to an end on February 19, 2019. The purpose of this letter is to notify you of the imminent end of term of the commission,” read the letter dated August 28.

The commission's decision to notify Uhuru on the expiry of its term is informed by the fact that it will take at least four months to complete the process of recruiting new commissioners.

“The NLC on its volition and perhaps in wanting to ensure there is no vacuum once the members vacate office, has notified the President,” a State official told The Standard.

According to the law, the President is required to declare a vacancy in the office of the commission chairperson and members within 14 days of the office falling vacant.

Other NLC commissioners are Samuel Tororei, Abdulkadir Adan Khalif, Tomiik Konyimbih, Silas Kinoti, Rose Mumbua, Muthoni Njogu and Clement Isaiah Lenachuru.

The commission has been in the limelight over the last few weeks over corruption allegations, especially concerning compulsory acquisition and compensation for land.

On August 13, Prof Swazuri and 16 co-accused denied charges of conspiring to defraud the Government. [Geoffrey Mosoku and Cyrus Ombati]