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Chaos as MCAs vote to kick out governor

CENTRAL
By Joseph Muchiri | June 10th 2020
A section of MCAS celebrate after the impeachment of Governor Anne Waiguru yesterday. [Joseph Muchiri, Standard]

The fate of Kirinyaga Governor Anne Waiguru now lies with the Senate after the County Assembly voted to impeach her, accusing her of gross violation of the Constitution, abuse of office and gross misconduct.

In a motion that lasted almost six hours, 23 MCAs voted to oust the embattled county boss, four abstained while six were absent. The Assembly has 33 members.

Immediately after learning about the impeachment, the public that had gathered outside the assembly burst into song and dance as they celebrated Waiguru’s ouster.

Speaker Anthony Gathumbi will now notify Senate Speaker Kenneth Lusaka of the impeachment within two days.

While tabling the motion, Mutira MCA David Wangui claimed there was enough evidence before the House to impeach the governor who has been at loggerheads with a section of MCAs.

The motion was preceded by chaos with a section of MCAs allied to Waiguru being ejected from the House.

In opposing the motion, the pro-Waiguru group led by Karumande MCA Antony Munene tried to disrupt the debate claiming his signature in support of the notice motion was forged.

“That was not the document that I signed,” he protested, even as Speaker Gathumbi ruled him out of order.

More trouble followed when Majority Leader Kamau Murango accused Munene of being drunk, which the later did not take lightly triggering a bitter exchange of words.

The issue got out of hand as Munene received the support of nominated MCA Lucy Njeri who claimed the speaker had taken sides in the debate.

Emotions running high

Other MCAs joined the fray with emotions running high from both camps and at some point threatened to degenerate into full scale war.

At some point, some MCAs tried to grab the mace, but the sergeant-at-arms thwarted their attempts. In the absence of a mace, the debate would not have proceeded.

The speaker ordered the ejection of Munene and Njeri from the House to restore order, then directed the motion to proceed.

Earlier, there were attempts by a section of MCAs allied to Waiguru to block the tabling of the motion, claiming there was a court order stopping the impeachment process.

On a point of order, nominated MCA Keffa Muriuki drew the attention of the Speaker to a court order obtained by Waiguru stopping the impeachment until such a time when issues she raised in court were determined.

The speaker ruled that the motion was properly tabled on the floor of the House.

Majority Leader Kamau Murango moved a motion to extend the morning session to 2.15pm owing to the weight of the matter and the large number of members who wanted to contribute to the motion.

In supporting the ouster motion, Budget Committee chair Daivd Mathenge appealed to President Uhuru Kenyatta to stay out of the issue since the impeachment is not a party affair but a process to restore sanity in the use of public resources.

Among the accusations is that Waiguru used her office to improperly confer a benefit to herself when she was irregularly paid for travel allowances by way of imprests amounting to Sh10.6 million yet she did not travel.

The governor was also accused of establishing an irregular tender evaluation committee.

Waiguru also released a statement dismissing the issues raised in the motion as baseless.

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