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Speaker Kamket denied entry to county assembly

 Speaker William Kamket stares at closed gates at the assembly chambers after he was denied entry yesterday. The speaker is accused of incitement and ward reps want him to clear his name. [PHOTO: HENRY KWENYA/STANDARD]

BARINGO: There was drama Thursday at the county assembly after the reinstated Speaker William Kamket was denied entry by a section of members.

Angry members of county assembly (MCAs) led by the Majority Leader Elijah Toroitich, said the embattled speaker had a pending criminal case in the high court in Eldoret and cannot be allowed to resume business until he is cleared.

The sergeant-at-arms closed the gate as several anti-riot security officers were deployed following rumours of an impending demonstration.

'Please open the door, I need to serve the people of Baringo as their speaker. The ruling from the court in Eldoret made it clear that I should report back to work," Mr Kamket pleaded.

But when it became clear he would not be allowed in, Mr Kamket went to the nearby Kabarnet Hotel where he addressed the media.

Kamket said he is prepared to serve the people and accused a few MCAs of politicising the matter.

"Those fighting me are busy bodies who are still in denial that the court has reinstated me. I am moving back to court for a review for the MCAs to understand," said Kamket.

Mend fences

"Clear yourself first before coming to this assembly, go relax as you mend your fences first and we will have no problem with you," Minority Leader Wesley Lekakimnon advised the speaker.

Deputy Speaker Douglas Kiplimo insisted Kamket ceased to be the speaker from March this year after he was removed by a petition signed by Baringo South residents.

"The speaker has no moral authority because 40 out of 47 MCAs voted him out of the assembly. We are requesting him to await the verdict from court since he is still facing charges of incitement," said Mr Kiplimo.

Mr Kiplimo, who is the acting speaker termed Kamket's return as an insult to the assembly, urging him to follow the legal channels to clean his name.

"If he lost the confidence of the assembly, why would he want to lead seven members who voted in his favour?" posed Barwessa Ward MCA Joseph Makilap.

"For normalcy to return, Kamket should remain out of office."

Kamket was ousted from office on March this year and the seat declared vacant following a petition by the residents from the  volatile Arabal area of Baringo South Sub-County.

The speaker is accused of being unfit to hold any public office on grounds that he had failed to avoid conflict of interest by supporting cattle rustling in Baringo South.

On Tuesday, the high court in Eldoret nullified his suspension.

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