State House denies hand in Hassan Joho, Amason Kingi woes
By Patrick Beja and Ernest Ndunda
| January 9th 2017
The presidency has denied any role in the withdrawal of the bodyguards of Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho and his Kilifi counterpart Amason Kingi.
The withdrawals come after Mr Joho's spat with President Uhuru Kenyatta and the Jubilee administration over projects in Coast region.
State House spokesman Manoah Esipisu yesterday said there was no political motive behind the withdrawals, adding that the regional police commander who issued the order was just re-orginasing security in the area.
"There is no political motive in the withdrawal of VIP security. It is up to the regional commander to make decisions he deems fit," Mr Esipisu explained.
On Friday, the Government withdrew the bodyguards of Joho and Mr Kingi without explanation, drawing protests from Opposition politicians.
"It is the responsibility of the Government to provide security for all Kenyans, not just the governors or a few individuals," said Esipisu.
Speaking during a media briefing in Mombasa, he noted that there had been fewer incidents of insecurity at the Coast in the past two years owing to increased surveillance and the Operation Linda Boni in Lamu County.
He spoke as Coast Opposition politicians criticised the Government for withdrawing the security officers after the two governors accused the President of commissioning projects that were not initiated by his administration in a bid to take political credit.
The President commissioned the first footbridge at Buxton built at Sh600 million and other two key projects in Mombasa last week, which Joho said were never initiated by the Jubilee administration.
Kingi also protested the scheduled commissioning of Baricho Lot II funded at Sh2.3 billion, claiming Jubilee was seeking credit for something it did not initiate.
Meanwhile, Esipisu said parties involved in the negotiation to end the ongoing doctors' strike would reconvene in Nairobi today.
He also said the Government had supplied major hospitals in the Coast region with modern equipment, citing Coast Provincial General Hospital which got equipment worth more than Sh460 million while Likoni Level 4 Hospital received equipment worth Sh430 million.
On infrastructure, he said the 100km Voi-Taveta road being built at a cost of Sh8.4 billion was only two kilometres away from completion and would be commissioned by the President.
"Less than two kilometres out of the 100km stretch remains. This will open up great opportunities between Tanzania, Taveta and Voi," he said.
In Tana River County, he said the Government had spent Sh477 million on spot improvement and routine maintenance of the Charedende–Bura, Makutano-Hola and Hola Township roads.
He said the Government was also upgrading roads in Kwale County at a cost of more than Sh5 billion. These include the Diani-Lunga Lunga, Bachuma-Maji Ya Chumvi, Milala-Mivumoni-Kilulu, Kwale-Mwaluganje, Kwale-Golini and Kwale-Kinango-Samburu roads.
On water projects, he said the Baricho works expansion project was about to begin at a cost of Sh2.7 billion and would serve over 150,000 Malindi people.
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