Governors to appoint deputies if Parliament approves bill
11 months ago, 15 Jan 00:37
Governors will have powers to appoint their deputies should a vacancy arise in the offices, if a proposed law seeking to address gaps in the Constitution is approved by Parliament. The County Governments Amendment Bill states that a governor will make the appointment within 14 days of the office becoming vacant, but with the approval of the county assemblies. The bill, sponsored by Senate Leader of Majority Kipchumba Murkomen states that such a vacancy may occur in the event of death, resignation or imprisonment of the sitting deputy governor as well as in cases where the deputy takes over the governor’s office. “I am going to expedite debate on the bill after what has happened in Nairobi,” Mr Murkomen told the Nation in reference to the resignation of Nairobi deputy governor Polycarp Igathe which has put Governor Mike Sonko’s administration in limbo. NYERI COUNTY In Nyeri County, Governor Mutahi Kahiga, who took over office after the death of his boss Wahome Gakuru, has also been running the county’s affairs without a deputy. The proposals contained in the bill have been heavily borrowed from the Constitution and include the way the supreme law contemplates a vacancy in the Office of the Deputy President and how he is replaced. Currently, both the Constitution and the County Governments Act are silent on how a vacancy in the office of a deputy governor can be filled. ERRAND BOYS Deputy governors have also earned the tag of “errand boys” due to the lack of defined responsibilities in the running of counties, a gap some of them have proposed should be addressed. But speaking to Nation on Sunday, Mr Joash Maangi, who is the chairman of the deputy governors’ body, dismissed the assertions, only calling for a change in law to fill vacancies in the offices. “The truth of the matter is that deputy governors are critical members of the county government and are in charge of the day-to-day running of the counties just like the deputy president is at the national level,” said Mr Maangi who is also the Kisii County deputy governor.
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