NAIROBI, Kenya, May 8 – Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto has retained the seat of chairman in the Council of Governors during the election of new officials in Naivasha on Thursday.
The decision to retain the Bomet leader was unanimous with the 44 Governors present agreeing that he should retain the post.
“The Governors will stay focused on devolution which has to succeed. We will not let down Kenyans and the next generation in pushing for the full implementation of devolution in the letter and spirit of the Constitution,” Ruto stated while addressing the leaders following the vote.
In the exercise where three County Chief Executives were absent with apologies, Nairobi Governor Evans Kidero lost his seat to his Kwale counterpart Salim Mvurya, as nobody proposed his name for the position.
“I had indicated before this meeting to a number of Governors that I was not going to defend my position owing to the pressure I have in serving the people of Nairobi. I will now back Mvurya and give him my full support as he takes up his duties,” Kidero indicated following the vote.
Support for Mvurya was unanimous with all the leaders present voting for him.
Other committee seats were also filled even as a new post of the Council Whip was created to replace that of Secretary. This will be occupied by Bungoma Governor Kenneth Lusaka who was the previous Secretary.
While the posts are open to competitive elections, they are shared among the key coalitions through consensus so as to ensure equal representation.
Ruto was elected on Deputy President William Ruto’s United Republic Party’s (Jubilee) ticket.
Former Prime Minister Raila Odinga’s Orange Democratic Movement (an affiliate of Coalition for Reforms and Democracy) sponsored Kidero while Lusaka was elected on a New Ford Kenya ticket.
The elections were part of the agenda during the Governors’ Annual General Meeting in Naivasha after which the leaders held another meeting with women Members of County Assemblies.
Ruto has had uneasy relations with the ruling coalition because he has been critical of what he claims are the National Government’s attempts to undermine devolution.
Jubilee sympathisers have accused him of working against the ruling coalition.