CoG to challenge ruling barring governors charged with graft from office


CoG to challenge ruling barring governors charged with graft from office
A side by side image of Governors Moses Lenolkulal (Samburu), Ferdinand Waititu (Kiambu) and Mike Sonko (Nairobi). PHOTO| CITIZEN DIGITAL

The Council of Governors has vowed to move to court challenge a court ruling requiring governors charged with economic crimes to vacate office for the duration of their trial.

The landmark ruling delivered on July 24, 2019 by Justice Mumbi Ngugi has so far seen three Governors; Moses Lenolkulal (Samburu), Ferdinand Waititu (Kiambu) and Mike Sonko (Nairobi) barred from office over graft charges.

In a press address on Monday, Council of Governors Chairman Wycliffe Oparanya said they would challenge the ruling “as a matter of common interest.”

“As a matter of common interest, the county governments will urgently move to court over the ruling seeking governors to step aside when charged on corruption matters as has been witnessed in the cases of Kiambu, Samburu and Nairobi Counties,” said the council.

In the ruling, Justice Mumbi Ngugi said governors, like other civil servants, should step aside once charged for a criminal offence and their roles completely taken over by their deputies.

The judge noted that 62(6) of the Anti-corruption and Economic Crimes Act (ACECA) that protected State officers from stepping aside from office while under prosecution for criminal charges was unconstitutional and “entrenching corruption and impunity in the land.”

Governors Sonko, Waititu and Lenolkulal have been charged with theft of millions of public funds through irregular procurement processes.

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Story By Benjamin Muriuki
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