By ERIC WAINAINA
KIAMBU COUNTY: Kiambu Speaker Nick Ndichu has become the first County Assembly Speaker to lose his seat after the House passed a Motion of no confidence against him.
The Motion, tabled by Ndeiya Ward Representative Nelson Munga, was supported by 69 out of 83 members during a debate presided over by Deputy Speaker Anthony Macharia.
Mr Ndichu, seen as a key ally of Governor William Kabogo, was accused of defrauding the assembly of Sh530, 000 for travel to Brazil, a trip members claimed he failed to make.
They also accused him of violating the Public Procurement Act by picking a law firm of his choice to represent the assembly in a court case as well as using derogatory language on the members.
According to the Motion, Ndichu authorised the assembly’s finance department to pay his costs for an annual Law Society of Kenya (LSK) retreat in Brazil on or about November 29, last year, which wasn’t sanctioned by the interim clerk and was not public business.
Ndichu, who was accorded an opportunity to defend himself on the floor, said he travelled to Brazil and tabled the air tickets and his passport to refute the claims.
The documents showed that he travelled on November 30 and returned on December 3. He also tabled a letter from LSK inviting county speakers to the retreat.
But on scrutiny, a member noticed that the retreat was to take place between November 22 and 29 and, therefore, claimed the Speaker travelled for his own matters, and it was impossible for him to have travelled to and from Brazil in three days.
Ndichu said the move was being propagated by external forces unhappy with his strong stand on the independence of the assembly.
“Those allegations are being made to create leeway for the Motion,” he told The Standard. Joseph Murugami (Limuru) claimed members were being influenced to sack Ndichu by a renowned Nairobi political leader but was later forced to withdraw the statement.
Interestingly, a Motion tabled by Kikuyu Township member Binary Wainaina last year to eject Ndichu was unsuccessful in the same assembly. A section of members said Ndichu was sacked because he had fallen out with the executive and that a candidate who unsuccessfully ran for the position would be fronted as his replacement.
But Majority Leader Simon Komu said the deputy would take charge and the position would be advertised.