We have experimented and struggled with governance structures since Independence!. We passed s new Constitution in 2010. But the nagging governance structural defaults have emerged again. Let me explain first about county governance. The Governors get a lot of power ( control of county financial resources and employment/appointment), which is like a poisoned chalice! The Governors get frustrations from several corners:
- The Senators only make the enabling laws and pass budgets that are handed over to the Governor. The Senators become envious of the Governor’s control of billions of shillings every year. They start what Sonko told us is called ” vipidiree’ – that is to persistently harass the Governors to destroy their image. They do so by using internal information on the amount of money allocated and the querries in the accountability reports. Their main intentions are to intimidate the Governors to give them favors. They also do it to diminish the appeal of the Governors amongst the voters, so that they can replace them in the next election!
- Immediately the duo, win and assume office, the Deputy Governors, envious of the powers and control of county resources, wage open or latent war against the Governors. They play a hidden key role in most of the impeachments. They do so because of the loophole, where in case of the removal of the Governor, they step up and assume office without the rigors of a by-election!
- The MCAs were given a lot of power. They have used the power to make budgets to enrich themselves. The pad vote-heads for traveling, meetings, and perks! If the Governor fails to approve the budget, they initiate the impeachment process! They also intimidate the Governors when it comes to approval of the names of appointees and employees. They demand “scratch-backs.”. If the Governor refuses, they use their “stick’ – impeachment again!
- The local MPs, the Women Rep, and other leaders also harass the Governors if they do not award them favors!
- The Governors powers to discipline are limited. They can not fire the insubordinate Deputy Governor! I have also seen the worrying trend where courts have been returning sacked County Executive Committee Members and other staff to the office! I wonder how the Governor is expected to work with such kind of people!
- The unionized staff constantly harass the Governors because of employment issues. Eg the Health workers.
I, therefore, think that the Constitution and the laws should be changed to :
- Make it mandatory for the people to be involved before the impeachment and in the filling of the vacancy through participation in a by-election! That is they should approve the impeachment. They should also elect in a by-election the next Governor!
- Just like in the case of a recall, there should be a set period when motions of impeachments can be filed, and when they can not! There should also be limitations on how often the impeachment motions can be filed, to avoid abuse!
- Allow the Governor to sack rebellious Deputy Governors!
- The Governors should be protected from unwarranted attacks by the Senators. To do this there should be a provision prohibiting the serving Senators from vying for the Gubernatorial seat for ten years.
- To protect the Governors from rogue MCAs, the powers of the MCAs with regard to budget-making and approval, and approval of nominees should be limited to avoid abuse!
6 To allow the Governor to effectively manage the staff, the Governor should be allowed to sack those members of staff who engage in sabotage or in illegal and unprotected strikes!
I hope the BBI will address these concerns!
What do you think,?
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