Power struggle as MCAs challenge Governor Mwadime's choices

Taita Taveta governor Andrew Mwadime when he appeared before the CPAC committee Chaired by Senator Moses Kajwang at the Shimba Hills Hall , KICC,Nairobi on June 23, 2023.  [Elvis Ogina, Standard]

A conflict is brewing between Governor Andrew Mwadime and Members of the County Assembly (MCAs) due to the Executive's failure to implement House resolutions.

At the same time, the MCAs are angered by the governor's decision to reinstate four senior county officials before the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) completes its investigation.

Mr Mwadime had initially placed these four officials on compulsory leave for allegedly embezzling over Sh4 million allocated for the 3-day World War 1 commemorative event held on March 1.

The governor has remained silent since the MCAs declared the creation of six advisor positions as illegal two months ago.

County Attorney John Mwakio has defended these positions, asking for clarification on which constitutional articles the governor has violated.

This declaration of illegality has also strained the relationship between the two branches of government, with some unnamed executives accusing the MCAs of a witch-hunt.

As tensions persist, Assembly Deputy Speaker Anselim Mwadime blames political intermediaries for causing divisions between the Executive and the MCAs.

The MCAs claim these intermediaries have influenced the governor and put him in collusion with the Assembly. Mr Mwadime has urged the intermediaries to leave the governor to fulfill his duties effectively.

"The political brokers are causing divisions between the Executive and MCAs. Do not waste your time. We know what is required of us and we will do our legislative and oversight roles well to move the county forward,” he said.

Mr Mwadime spoke at a meeting at Imani Primary School attended by Deputy Governor Christine Kilalo, Assembly Speaker Wisdom Mwamburi, Senator Jones Mwaruma, and MPs Lydia Haika (Woman Rep), Danson Mwashako (Wundanyi), Abdi Chome (Voi) and Peter Shake (Mwatate).

Ms Kilalo did not respond to the concerns raised by the MCAs.

"The House will not entertain nonsense. We will continue playing our roles well despite interference from the Executive," she warned.

The MCAs criticised the governor for making irregular appointments and expanding the Executive to accommodate his political allies, without considering the financial burden or the necessary qualifications of appointees.

“We are not at war with the governor. We want to fix the county of wrong-doing and make the governor deliver. We will stand tall to effectively deal with corruption and mediocrity in government,” said Mwadime.