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Daily Nation : February 16th 2014
SUNDAY NATION February 16, 2014 ACCUSATIONS | Funds not yet spent Sunday Review 29 Nakuru assembly speaker accused of dictatorship BY FRANCIS MUREITHI @FMureith1 firstname.lastname@example.org When she became the Nakuru County Assembly Speaker, Ms Susan Wakarura Kihika enjoyed cordial working relations with the 55 members until last week. And if the rising disharmony among some county assembly members is any guide, then the honeymoon may be over for for Ms Kihika. The dissenting voices that are accusing her of “dictatorship” and overstepping her mandate are increasing by the day. But Ms Kihika has lashed out at the ounty assembly members and accused them of flouting the Standing Orders and discussing business of the assembly outside the House. “I am not a dictator, and I will never be. I strongly believe in freedom of speech,” Ms Kihika told the Sunday Nation by telephone. Residents now fear the bad blood between the MCAs and the Speaker may stall development in the county as major Bills may take long to be passed. Political analysts say the as- sembly may lose its oversight role and focus to keep the executive on its toes. Nakuru County Assembly Speaker Susan Kihika. FILE | NATION From left: Elgeyo-Marakwet County Assembly speaker Albert Kochei, Senator Kipchumba Murkomen and Governor Alex Tolgos at a past event. Leaders differ over delay in passing Bills BY SUNDAY NATION CORRESPONDENT email@example.com the county assembly emerged yesterday as both traded accusations in public over claims of sabotaging development. Assembly speaker Albert S Kochei kicked up the storm on Tuesday when he hit out at the executive for what he claimed was “public incitement” against the assembly. “It is so embarrassing that some leaders have acted in a manner contrary to their leadership positions,” he said. “It is better for a layman to make alarming claims on critical leadership matters than to hear it from an official holding office in our county,” the angry speaker said at the official opening of the assembly also attended by Governor Alex Tolgos, his Deputy Dr Gabriel Lagat and County Commissioner Athur Osiya, among others. The speaker accused the governor’s office of attacking the assembly through social media, a move he said would poison the relationship between the two arms of the county government. The speaker was reacting to the executive’s claims that the county had not spent money on development because the county assembly had delayed approving the crucial Bills. Dr Lagat, who is in charge of the finance and planning docket, had a day earlier said: “The county has lost on implementation time because the county assembly has not approved Bills either because they are on strike or in recess. We have, therefore, harp differences between the Elgeyo-Marakwet county executive and not spent over Sh800 million in the bank.” Dr Lagat feared they may not achieve much because they have exactly five months left in the current budget year. He said the third quarter report on development will not be impressive for the county. He cited the example of Sh25 million in bursary funds the county assembly is yet to approve that were to be to disbursed to needy students in the county joining Form One. “It is about time to ask the county assembly how many Bills they have passed and if they are commensurate with the allowance they earn,” said Dr Lagat. Sh800m The amount of money in the bank that Elgeyo-Marakwet Deputy Governor Gabriel Lagat says is yet to be spent He said there were five cru- cial Bills pending that include the supplementary budget Bill, the bursary policy document, the county trade and licensing Bill, and the financial Bill. It was these revelations that stirred accusations against the assembly in the social medial and on local vernacular stations attracting the speaker’s wrath at the forum. But Governor Tolgos at- tempted to pour cold water on the acrimony saying: “Though we are one of the counties that received the least amount in budgetary allocations from the national government, we shall utilise the Sh3.1 billion well.” He urged the assembly to pass the Bills to enable the county to run smoothly.
February 15th 2014
February 17th 2014