Senate to decide Iria fate Friday afternoon

November 6, 2015 7:26 am
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Governor Iria has since denied the allegations and alleged political witch-hunt while also accusing the assembly of blackmail after he rejected their bid to allocate Sh700 million to the Ward Development Fund/FILE
Governor Iria has since denied the allegations and alleged political witch-hunt while also accusing the assembly of blackmail after he rejected their bid to allocate Sh700 million to the Ward Development Fund/FILE
NAIROBI, Kenya, Nov 6 – Muranga Governor Mwangi wa Iria will know his fate Friday afternoon when the Senate Special Committee reviewing his impeachment submits its final report to the House.

The House will hold a special sitting and vote to either adopt or reject the recommendations of the committee which held hearings on Wednesday and Thursday collecting views from the County Assembly and the Governor.

In the impeachment report, the assembly made 25 claims against the governor among them abuse of office charges, misappropriation of county funds and flouting of the Constitution, the County governments Act, the Public Finance Management Act and the Public Procurement and Oversight Act.

Governor Iria has since denied the allegations and alleged political witch-hunt while also accusing the assembly of blackmail after he rejected their bid to allocate Sh700 million to the Ward Development Fund.

READ: Iria accuses Murang’a County Assembly of malice

Iria is also accused of entering the county into unsustainable debt amounting to Sh2.5 billion and also investing county funds in private institutions citing the Murang’a Co-operative Society otherwise referred to as ‘Shilingi kwa Shilingi’ on which Sh23 million was spent in advertising.

Iria’s counsel mounted a strong defense as they presented their case to the David Musila led committee stating that the governor was innocent.

READ: Iria boost as CoB terms Ward Development Fund unlawful

While notifying senators of the special sitting, Deputy Speaker Kembi Gitura urged all those with engagements to cancel them to ensure there was quorum to pass the committee’s recommendations.

“The business to be transacted at the sitting shall be the consideration of the report of the Special Committee on the Proposed Removal from Office of the Governor of Murang’a County. In accordance with Standing Orders 29 (5), this shall be the only business on that day and thereafter the Senate shall adjourn to the next sitting day as per the approved calendar,” announced Gitura.

The deputy speaker who is also the Murang’a Senator will chair the session since Speaker Ekwee Ethuro is attending the 15th Commonwealth Speakers and Presiding Officers’ Conference Africa Region in Accra, Ghana.

If a vote in the Senate fails to result in the removal of the Governor, the Speaker of the Senate shall notify the Murang’a County Assembly Speaker.

If the Assembly is not satisfied with the Senate’s decision, it can re-introduce the debate after three months, if not, then they will have to contend the Iria’s position as governor.

The Senate had initially been forced to halt the process after Iria moved to court seeking to bar the Senate from hearing the case.

However High Court judge Justice Joseph Onguto on Tuesday declined to issue conservatory orders stopping the process instead urged Iria not to shy away from public scrutiny as due process was followed by the Murang’a County Assembly in impeaching him.

He also noted that the Senate had promised to accord the governor fair hearing.

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