, NAIROBI, Kenya, Jul 21 – Senators have faulted the appointment of Central Bank of Kenya Governor Patrick Njoroge and his Deputy Sheila M’Mbijjewe saying their input in their vetting and subsequent appointment was not in accordance with the law.
The Senators led by Kakamega’s Boni Khalwale who had sought a statement from Speaker Ekwee Ethuro over the matter said punitive measures needed to be taken to ensure the opinion of the Senate was taken seriously.
Speaker Ekwe Ethuro in response to Khalwale ruled that the Constitution and the Central Bank Act were not followed in the appointment of the Governor and the Deputy and the two were therefore in office illegally.
“The Constitution as read with the Central Bank of Kenya Act at Sections 13 and 13B require that both the National Assembly and the Senate vet and approve the nominee for the position of Governor and the position of Deputy Governor of the Central of Kenya,” ruled the Speaker.
He added: “The Senate has not been informed of any nominees for the positions and has accordingly neither vetted nor approved any person for appointment to these positions.”
Ethuro who during the session was praised by Senators for invoking a “Solomonic’ ruling lamented that although he had written to the Speaker of the National Assembly and copied the letter to the Attorney-General, National Treasury Cabinet Secretary, the Chairperson of the Commission for the Implementation of the Constitution (CIC) and the Chairperson of the Commission on Administrative Justice, none of them had either acknowledged nor responded.
“I drew their attention to the relevant provisions of the law and informed them that any purported approval or appointment made otherwise than in accordance with the provisions of the Central Bank of Kenya Act would not be proper and would amount to a nullity in law for all purposes,” explained Ethuro.
Khalwale and a host of other Senators lashed out at the presidency accusing it of impunity claiming the gazettement and handing over of leadership was done knowing that the law had been flouted further calling for the impeachment of President Uhuru Kenyatta for breaking the law.
“The need to appoint these two had not been gazette but after communicated to those offices, the Office of the President went ahead and appointed, gazetted and arranged for the handing over from the outgoing governor, in so doing the President engaged himself in gross misconduct,” said Khalwale.
National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi was also heavily criticized for going against the constitution and further fuelling the supremacy wars between the two Houses of Parliament.
“Your ruling should not be in vain. This House has been sidestepped, ignored and by-passed. I have worked with President Uhuru (Kenyatta), he is not a foolish person, it is his advisers that are sending him astray every day,” said Senate Minority Leader Moses Wetangula.
Nyeri Senator Mutahi Kagwe however defended the President saying he should not be blamed for everything that goes wrong as supremacy wars between the two Houses were at play.
“This is not a matter of Opposition or Government, it a matter of law. There is no point of using a bazooka in a situation where a bullet is required,” said Kagwe.
“It is Jubilee which is embarrassing Jubilee, it is not being embarrassed by the Opposition, and it is those within us that we should punish.”
Kiraitu Murungi (Meru) urged the Senate to instead correct the procedural mistakes made in the appointment of the CBK Governor saying they should now vet him to ascertain whether he was really as qualified as the lower house found him to be.
“We need to take proactive action and not just cry,” said Murungi.
Sections 13 and 13B of the Central Bank of Kenya Act establishes the offices of the Governor and two Deputy Governors who shall be appointed by the President with the approval of Parliament – Parliament meaning the two Houses.