Joho's threat sparks fresh high-level investigation

Investigations on Governor Joho

Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho

The Senate Devolution Committee has launched fresh investigations in Mombasa County following threats made by Governor Hassan Joho.

Deputy Speaker Kithuki Kindure sanctioned the investigation following a concern raised by Mombasa Senator Mohamed Faki.

"I urge the Senate to come out and protect the Mombasa county assembly. This will avoid a situation where the assembly will be paralyzed, giving the Executive a free hand to operate in the county," Senator Faki told the House.

Emasculating Devolution

The Senator further explained that the bad blood between the county government and the assembly had been propagated by three CECs who ignored the summons to appear before the assembly.

"By trying to subvert the supremacy of county assemblies, which are organs directly elected by the people, you are emasculating devolution and defeating the purposes for which it has been placed as the centre piece of the Constitution.

"The matter is an exception case. It touches on widespread threats to the independence of county assemblies and should be addressed as a way to warn executives not to interfere with assemblies and get away with it," Senator Kindiki noted.

The deputy speaker further cautioned the governor that "he may be sultan of Mombasa but not sultan of the county assembly".

Further warning him that it is impossible for him to dissolve the assembly "whether in his dreams or through wishful thinking".

Senators were quick to back the directive with Minority Leader James Orengo noting that leaders were mistaken to think that it would be simple to dissolve a county assembly.

"It is right to impeach a governor and, by extension, remove a CEC. You cannot by any legal mechanism dissolve a county assembly other than through the process of suspension and dissolution of the entire county government," he stated.

Governor Joho and his assembly have been waring after the MCAs threatened to impeach Transport CEC Twafiq Balala, brother to Tourism CS Najib Balala, over underperformance in his docket.

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