Kiambu MCAs up in arms over UDA nominee letters

The MCAs now want the president and his deputy to rein in the authors of the letters “to allow democracy to take its course.” [File, Standard]

A section of Kiambu MCAs have called on President William Ruto and his deputy Rigathi Gachagua to intervene and end appointment wrangles that have rocked the county assembly.

Holding letters allegedly written by the United Democratic Alliance Party leadership directing how positions should be shared, the MCAs claimed that their democratic space and the county assembly standing orders were being violated.

The letters dated September 27 and signed by UDA Secretary General Veronica Maina had the names of persons to fill the positions of majority leader, deputy majority leader, chief whip and deputy chief whip.

One of the letters - Ref No. UDA/1/KCA/01/22 - seen by The Standard and addressed to the clerk of the county assembly read in part; “Kindly note that the following UDA leaders are duly nominated members from our party to be majority leader, deputy majority leader, chief whip and his deputy, and board members in Kiambu county assembly. Please accord them  the necessary support.”

The nominees are Godrey Mucheke as majority leader, Francis Koina as deputy majority leader, Munga Mbuiyu as chief whip, and Eric Ndung’u as board member.

In yet another letter - Ref No. UDA/KCA/04/2022 - addressed to the county clerk and copied to the governor, Munga Mbuiyu was nominated to be majority leader, Dan Gitau to act as his deputy, while Francis Mucheke was nominee for chief whip.

The MCAs now want the president and his deputy to rein in the authors of the letters “to allow democracy to take its course.”

Governor faulted

At the same time, the ward reps have faulted the governor for not convening a meeting, saying this has led to the current crisis.

Ndeiya MCA Nelson Munga, who is also eyeing the majority leader post, said the directions from the party headquarters contravened the Kiambu county assembly standing orders and stifled democracy.

“Our President William Ruto and his deputy were elected through a democratic process. The same process is required to take place when electing the Kiambu house leaders. But we have received letters from the party which we cannot even authenticate,” Mr Munga said.

The MCA also claimed the county assembly had been “arm-twisted” earlier during elections of the speaker and his deputy.

“We do not know why the party leadership through the party secretary general is imposing leaders on us yet the Standing Orders are clear on the process of electing the leadership,” he said.

According to Standing Order No. 2, the biggest party or coalition of parties in the county assembly shall elect the leader of the majority party and his deputy.

It is this Standing Order that the MCAs feel the UDA leadership has abused, which has resulted in imposition of candidates on them and derailed the first county assembly sitting.

The MCAs are now saying that the nominations and the letters thereof have infringed on their rights and their democratic space, and are a source of disquiet in the assembly.

Munga told journalists that while the UDA mantra is bottom-up, the directives in the letters seem to be “up-bottom”.

Dan Gitau, ward rep for Gatongora in Ruiru, said Kiambu will set a bad precedent if the directives are obeyed. Mr Gitau said they are seeking an end to the wrangles and disquiet, and called on UDA’s top organ to stop interfering with the assembly’s affairs.