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Governor locks horns with County Assembly over public service nominees

Kitui County Governor Charity Ngilu is accusing the County Assembly of failure to expedite the approval of County Public Service Board nominees to employ healthcare professionals to fight Covid-19.
Ngilu said the county assembly speaker George Ndotto was not considerate and has taken time to convene the County Assembly to approve the nominees that were presented by the Executive on February 14, 2020.
“He should come out and give us the names or if he is unable to perform his duties should quit his job,” said the visibly angrily governor.
However, in a swift rejoinder during a press briefing on the precincts of Kitui County Assembly Thursday, Ndotto said that the assembly requested information about the nominees from the County Secretary to assist the Appointments Committee in undertaking the vetting, but the County Secretary noted that the information being sought was domiciled in the Governor’s office.
The same was however unavailable as the Governor was not in the office then. And at the core of the matter, the County Assembly would like to be furnished with details such as the shortlisting and the procedure used to arrive at the nominees, though the Executive has not surrendered to the legislature to date.
Ndotto said that on April 9, 2020, the assembly was served with court pleadings where the Governor of Kitui County had sued the County Assembly in relation to hiring of the Chairperson and the Members of the County Public Service Board.
The interim application was heard by the Employment and Labour Relations Court in Nairobi on April 14, 2020 and orders and application sought by the Governor were therein declined.
Therefore, the speaker said that there has not been any unreasonable delay in the vetting process by the County Assembly as alleged.
“In fact, the Assembly has made a lot of effort to have the process concluded despite having not received very crucial information from the appointing authority as well as working under very stressful times because of the coronavirus pandemic,” noted Ndotto.
He disclosed that the Appointments Committee is yet to conclude its sittings, meaning there is no report to table to the County Assembly at the moment.
The Speaker said that once the Committee concludes its sittings and comes up with a report, it will be tabled and allocated time for debate in the House.
By Yobesh Onwong’a

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