Parliamentary watchdogs call for ouster of governors in graft cases

Wednesday, September 2nd, 2020 00:00 |
Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei. Photo/PD/SAMUEL KARIUKI

Parliament watchdog committees have asked county assemblies to impeach governors charged with corruption.

The Senate County Public Accounts and Investment Committee (CPAIC) and the National Assembly’s Public Account committee (PAC) want MCAs to “rise to the occasion” and institute impeachment motions against their respective governors.

Governors currently facing corruption charges include Sospeter Ojaamong (Busia), Mike Sonko (Nairobi), Moses Lenokulal (Samburu) and Migori’s Okoth Obado.

Obado, who is the latest graft victim to be arraigned court, he and his four children were on Monday freed on Sh.18.25 million cash bail with strict terms to prevent them from interfering with the graft case facing them.

They all denied committing the fraud charges in which the county government lost Sh73 million..

Obado is accused of benefiting indirectly from the millions paid to his children.

Investigations by EACC revealed that the children received payments from companies that traded with the Migori county government between 2013 and 2017 when Obado served his first term,

Ugunja MP Opiyo Wandayi, who chairs the PAC, said it was no longer tenable for governors facing corruption charges to continue staying in office.

 “The offences as disclosed in charge sheets are enough grounds for impeachment,” Wandayi tweeted on yesterday, insisting that ward representatives and the Senate should rise to the occasion and give counties direction.

Enjoined by law

Migori Senator Ochillo Ayacko, whose governor is Obado argued that MCAs are enjoined by law and where they find that a threshold has been made to violations of law and constitution, it is for them to forward that matter to the senate.

“I have not gone into specific details of what went wrong in various counties but I am familiar with what went wrong in Kiambu county, in my view, it meant the threshold of impeachment was attained to impeach former Governor Ferdinand Waititu,” said Ayacko who sits in the CPAIC.

“It is within the mandate and duty of MCAs to deal with each case as it presents itself, let them look at evidence and bring the matter to the senate or decide as they best wish,” the senator said while refusing to be drawn to claims that Obado, his political nemesis could be facing impeachment after his arraignment in court over graft charges.

On his part, Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei cautioned MCAs not to rush to file impeachment motions as this could set a bad precedent.

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