Focus on Ichung'wah as he denies planting discord within Kiambu

National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung'wah. [Samson Wire, Standard]

National Assembly Majority Leader Kimani Ichung'wah finds himself embroiled in supremacy battles with a section of Kiambu's leadership, who accuse him of sowing discord among them.

Ichung'wah, who is also the Kikuyu MP, faces opposition from parliamentary colleagues who have accused him of using his proximity to power to "grab" national government projects meant for Kiambu and rerouting them to his constituency.

Kiambu MCAs also claim that Ichung'wah is undermining them.

A group of leaders from the county has publicly criticised Ichung'wah, whom they describe as proud and arrogant, alleging that despite his senior leadership position within the county, he has become a divisive figure.

His most recent conflict involves a public altercation with some MCAs, whom he accuses of forming an ‘unholy’ alliance with Kiambu Governor Kimani Wamatangi.

At a function in his constituency, the MP confronted the MCAs, accusing them of neglecting their duties by "blindly aligning themselves with Wamatangi's agenda".

The MP said the MCAs have disregarded their oversight roles and are now attending all the governor's meetings across the county.

“There are MCAs, some from Kikuyu, who have joined those opposing me for bringing most of the development projects to my constituency. I have no apologies to make for prioritising development projects to ensure my people benefit,” said Ichung'wah.

Ichung'wah has also been at loggerheads with Githunguri MP Gathoni Wamuchomba for allegedly leading a tirade against him regarding the alleged skewed allocation of development programmes in the county.

But the MCAs have shot back, accusing Ichung'wah of disrespecting them and being a divisive figure in the county.

Led by Nachu MCA George Kimani, the ward representatives hit out at Ichung'wah, saying he has resorted to personal attacks “after realising that he is fast becoming isolated due to his brand of politics.”

“The Majority Leader is now insulting leaders with whom he does not agree. The constitution is clear on the roles of every elected leader. As an MCA, I have an obligation to work with the governor, being the custodian of county resources.

"The resources that I use are not with Ichung'wah, and I would urge him to respect us and treat us with dignity,” said Kimani.

He added, “Ichung'wah has made it his business to drive a wedge between leaders in the county, and we are saying we are not going to allow him to go that route. His position at the national level dictates that he should be the voice of reason, but he is acting otherwise.”

Further, the third-term MP is also battling accusations from Ward Reps in Kiambu of plotting to destabilise the county leadership, including sponsoring MCAs to politically fight the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) county chief.

Ngecha Ward MCA Patrick Ngaruiya accused the Kikuyu MP of pursuing a vendetta against other leaders in an attempt to isolate them from the electorate for political expediency.

"Why would a leader in a national position stoop so low as to engage in conflict with grassroots leaders? He seems very intent on tarnishing the image after realising some leaders are fulfilling their election promises," said Ngaruiya.

He added that some county leaders expressed dissatisfaction with MCAs following a failed attempt last year to impeach Wamatangi.

“They are not happy that the governor has established a good working relationship with MCAs. They want a situation where there will be antagonism for their political advantage,” said the Ward Rep, adding that 76 out of the 86 MCAs in Kiambu are backing Wamatangi.

Wamuchomba had alleged that Ichung'wah, through his influential position, was redirecting national government projects intended for Kiambu elsewhere.

“We have 12 constituencies in Kiambu county. For example, if we have an allocation of Sh2 billion, roads do not come with the same needs. There is a road that requires Sh60 million, and there is one that requires Sh20 million, so we would say the Sh40 million road in Githunguri should be a priority," she said.

Speaking in Russiget yesterday, Ichung'wah said, "I have no regrets about bringing development to the Kikuyu people. Where else should I direct them?"