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Residents Reject Appointment of Chief Labeled ‘Outsider’

A section of residents of Korokora location, in Garissa sub county have ‘rejected’ the promotion of an assistant chief to a chief claiming he was an ‘outsider.’

Isaack Ahmed who until his promotion was one of the three assistant chiefs in Korakora location has been Acting chief for the past 9 months, following the retirement of chief Abdi Mohamed Rabe in June 30, 2018.

But according to the residents, the administrator ‘is not a local and so he cannot be in a position to serve them well.’

Addressing the press Thursday, the angry residents led by Abdullahi Abdi, a local elder said that they will continue protesting until the chief’s appointment is ‘revoked’.

Abdi said that they had stayed without a chief for close to two years after the former retired and are ready to wait even longer until their ‘own is appointed into the position’.

“We are here to show our displeasure against the move by the government’s appointment of Isaack Ahmed as our chief. We had our own who applied for the same position but were not considered. We suspect it is corruption that influenced this decision,” Abdi said.

Another resident, Ahmed Mohamed Ali said that they have no problem with a chief being promoted but all they want is an administrator who is a local and who serves them well.

“What we are asking is for the government to revoke the appointment and re-advertise it afresh. We want to have a local whom we can work with,” Ali said.

On her part, Hawa Ahmed said that they will not allow the chief to ‘set foot into the office’.

A circular by the Ministry of Interior gives priority to an assistant chief to take office in case a chief vacates office because of retirement or being incapacitated, death or any other reason as provided in the public service.

Contacted for comment, Garissa County Commissioner Meru Mwangi acknowledged having received written complaints from the ‘dissatisfied’ saying his office will address them.’

“It’s true I have received written complaints from the residents who are not in agreement with the appointment. We are addressing them. All I want to request the residents is to remain calm and leave the matter to the government to address,” Mwangi said.

The appointment of chiefs and their assistant chiefs in North Eastern is such an emotive issue and in most cases the politicians are involved.

Last month, two ward representatives, Abubakar Shide (Masalani) and Adow Omar (Hulugho), while addressing the press in Garissa town accused some influential personalities of being behind the push to have the appointments of chiefs and their assistants in the area nullified for their own selfish interest.

They said they were aware that some politicians were ‘moving from one office to the other in the Ministry of Interior to influence the appointments for their personal gain.’

Among the posts being contested are those for Abalotiro and Hulugho locations.

By Jacob Songok

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