Wajir Governor’s impeachment looms as Senate committee upholds crucial charge

Monday, May 17th, 2021 15:17 |
Ousted Wajir Governor Mohamed Abdi

The 11-member Senate committee that probed the impeachment of Wajir Governor Mohamed Abdi Mohamud has upheld one charge that formed the basis of his impeachment.

"Charge 1 on gross violation of the Constitution of Kenya,2010, the County Government Act, 2012, the Public Procurement and Asset Disposal Act, 2015 and the Public Finance Management Act, 2012 has been substantiated," reads the conclusion part of the 11-member committee report.

The move now paves way for his impeachment by the whole house where Senators will vote to endorse his ouster or dismiss it.

The 11-member committee, however, found that abuse of office and gross misconduct charges were not substantiated.

The committee members included Okong’o Omogeni (Chair), Susan Kihika (Vice-Chair), Johnson Sakaja, Mwangi Githiomi, Christine Zawadi, Mithika Linturi,  Hargura Godana,  Fred Outa, Agnes Muthama, Petronilla Were and Issa Juma Boy.

The Committee Chair Senator Omogeni tabled the report on Monday.

The Senate. thereafter, proceeded on a one-hour break to study the report before coming back for debate and voting.

At last week’s Senate hearing, Governor Abdi was represented by lawyers Paul Nyomodi and Ndegwa Njeru.

The county assembly was represented by Senior Counsel Ahmednasir Abdullahi.

The Assembly linked Mohamud’s wife, Khaire Omar, daughter Farhiya Mohamed and son Yusuf Mohamed to alleged irregular multi-million-shilling contracts that formed the basis of his impeachment.

The assembly legal team pleaded with the Senate committee to consider its evidence and uphold the impeachment.

Senior counsel Abdulahi said there was enough evidence that the “governor, wife and children have had their hands competing in the cookie jar”

The Governor’s legal team on the other hand urged the committee to dismiss the case as it does not meet the required threshold of his removal.

The governor in his opening statement blamed 2022 politics for his ouster saying those seeking to replace him were behind the ouster.

Governor Abdi accused the county’s Senator Abdullahi Ali of orchestrating the ouster motion

According to the Governor, the Senator declared interest in the seat adding that he was not surprised with the smear campaign aimed at him through the impeachment motion.

The Jubilee Party, the Governor said, had directed its members at the assembly not to impeach him but they defied the party position.

The Wajir Governor was impeached on April 27 over gross violation of the Constitution, corruption and abuse of office by Members of County Assembly.

MCAs also cited poor service delivery by Governor Abdi’s administration.

 37 MCAs voted in support of his impeachment while 10 voted against. Two members were absent.

The impeachment motion was tabled despite the existence of a court order that stopped the assembly from debating the ouster motion.

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