High Court seals fate of sacked county executives

Three county executives have lost a bid to keep their jobs after the Employment and Labour Relations court lifted orders reinstating them.

Idris Aden Mukhtar, Mukhtar Bulale and Salah Yakub Falah were dismissed from office in May but were later reinstated after they obtained a court order.

But yesterday, High Court Judge Hellen Wasilwa said the three could not continue working for their employer, the County Government of Garissa, if there was no existing working relationship.

Justice Wasilwa agreed with submissions tabled by the Nathif Jama-led government that reinstating the three amounts to forcing an employee on an employer.

The county government, through lawyer Steven Mogaka, had challenged the orders issued reinstating the three, arguing that they were issued exparte and the county did not get an opportunity to defend its stand.

foreign trip

The orders issued, Mr Mogaka argued, should not have been awarded at that stage without the court listening to both sides.

"The  court ought to have  given the  county government an opportunity to present its case against the three," the lawyer said.

Mogaka told the court that the county had not acted in any malice when it made its decision to terminate the employment of the three.

He told the court that Mr Muhktar and Mr Falah were fired after they failed to satisfactorily explain a trip they took to Israel and Italy without authorisation from the government.

Mr Buale on the other hand, the court had heard, was fired for failing to explain the delay in establishing a water project proposed by the County.

Delay in commencing work on the water project, he said, is posing a health risk to the residents who are now forced to drink muddy water.

Before the three were sacked, Mogaka said, they were accorded an opportunity to defend their actions and counter the allegations against them, which they failed to do.