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President sends home troubled quality lab board

By Jeckonia Otieno | October 19th 2020 at 00:00:00 GMT +0300

President Uhuru Kenyatta has disbanded the National Quality Control Laboratory (NQCL) board.

The move seems to be an attempt to finally resolve the bad blood between the board and its parent ministry.

With a stroke of the pen, William Mwatu, John Sitienei, Irene Kamanja, Georgina Muchai, Lilian Balusi, Hellen Bosibori, Paul Munyao, Simon Njoroge and Edith Wakori were sent packing.

This is the second time the board is being disbanded.

This could just mean that the conflict between NQCL and its sister entity with which it has had incessant squabbles, the Pharmacy and Poisons Board (PPB), is finally up for resolution, if no more court cases erupt.

The president’s axe comes three months before the expiry of the term of the disbanded board and just over a year after being reinstated into office by the High Court. It had been disbanded by Jackson Kioko, the chair of PPB, which appoints the NQCL board.

In a judgement reinstating the board, Justice Byrum Ongaya stated, "Nevertheless it is sufficient for the court to return that in every removal of a public officer from the office held, Article 236 on due process applies."

In June this year, the PPB board moved to disband the board of NQCL before moving ahead to appoint another. The judge ruled that this went against the Pharmacy and Poisons Act since after NQCL board is appointed only the president, through the State Corporation Advisory Council, can disband it.

National Quality Control Laboratory NQCL
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