Senators to discuss Wajir governor ouster, BBI bill

Monday, May 3rd, 2021 00:00 |
The Kenyan Senate during a past session. Photo/PD/FILE

Hillary Mageka @hillarymageka

Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka has called for a Special Sitting this week to deliberate among other issues the impeachment motion against embattled Wajir Governor Mohamud Abdi.

During the sittings expected to take place from Tuesday to Thursday, the Upper House will also discuss the County Allocation of Revenue bill, which unlocks funds to county governments.

The senators will also take a vote on the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020, whose debate stalled last week.

According to the Senate Business Committee, the House will on Wednesday decide whether to hear the charges levelled against Wajir County boss through plenary or by an 11-member select committee.

“The House will conclude debate on CARA as well as take a vote on the BBI bill on Tuesday,” Lusaka told People Dailyon Sunday.

“On Wednesday, members will decide on the route they want to hear the charges against the governor; because there are only two options through plenary or by an 11-member select committee.” 

After an impeachment of a governor, Section of 33(b) of the County Governments Act and Standing Order Number 75 provides for the Senate to probe and debate proposed impeachment of a governor by the County Assembly.

The law also stipulates that the Senate must, within 10 days of receiving the County Assembly’s resolution from the Speaker, convene and set up a special committee or sit as a committee of the whole House to determine whether or not the claims in the impeachment are substantiated.

Lusaka on Thursday received Wajir assembly’s resolu tion to impeach the governor.  

The Assembly Speaker Ibrahim Yakub presented to the Senate Speaker;  a list of charges, annexures and the number of MCAs present during the vote and those who voted in support of the impeachment motion.

Abdi was on Tuesday evening impeached by 37 MCAs who voted in support of his impeachment while 10 voted to oppose it.

Conservatory order

On Thursday, the High Court sitting in Meru barred Lusaka from gazetting the impeachment of the governor to allow for commencement of the hearings in the Senate.

“That pending the hearing and determination of this Amended Petition, this Honorable Court be pleased to issue a conservatory order restraining the Senate  from debating, tabling and adopting for debate and/or taking any action that may bring Section 33(3) of the County Government Act into effect the resolution by the Wajir County Assembly  the April 27, 2021, which resolution seeks to remove interested Party from the Office of the County Governor,” the court orders dated April 29, 2021 and received by the Clerk of the Senate office read in part.

Yesterday, Lusaka said the Senate is an independent institution, whose proceedings cannot be injuncted or restrained. 

“I have not been served or received any court order from any quarter. The House will, therefore, proceed with the matter in the tight stipulated period,” Lusaka disclosed. 

“Impeachment proceedings have statutory timelines, within seven days of receipt, the House should convene to deliberate on the impeachment motion.”

But the governor lawyer Ndegwa Njiru has dismissed Lusaka as being dishonest saying that they duly served the Senate with court orders on Friday.

“The Speaker is being economical with the truth. We served them with the court orders on Friday,” Njiru said.

The MCAs have accused Abdi of gross violation of the Constitution, abuse of office and poor service delivery.

Governor Mahamud has attributed his woes to friends-turned-foes including a long serving MP from the county, a former chairman and a serving Chief Administrative Secretary, all of whom have joined forces, to oust him with an eye on General Election.

“It is known fact that those behind the ouster motion are politicians from Nairobi particularly those with an eye on the governor’s seat  in 2022.

I want to tell them, let them continue throwing stones and using the county assembly for their selfish interest, their days are numbered, we will floor them come 2022, because majority of Wajir residents are behind me.”

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