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Citizen Weekly

Sunday, 8 March 2015

Claims hefty amounts changed hands in Nyamira officers recruitment

A list of enforcement officers who were secretly recruited by the Nyamira county government  two weeks ago is now in public domain and is being circulated in market centres and towns with allegations that those recruited parted with as a much Sh50,000 with a commitment of similar amount upon  confirmation.
A list of names which was availed to Weekly Citizen indicated that 120 officers had been recruited and posted to various market centres and towns in the 20 wards in the county.
According to the copy which has the rubber stamp of the county secretary, the deployment of the officers had been done by the county executive committee member in charge of roads and public works Kefa Osoro.
The county public service board chairman Peter Nyakundi dismissed the list saying it was the board which has the mandate of interviewing and hiring the county workers as per the constitution but not any other body.
Currently, there is a misunderstanding between the county executive and the board, a factor which has seen the executive denying the board to exercise its mandate of carrying the recruitment of workers in the county.
When Osoro was contacted, he dismissed the list saying that he has not done any recruitment as it is constitutionally clear that it is the mandate of the board to recruit.
He said that in case he had done the recruitment, it would bear the rubber stamp of his department but not that of the county secretary which the copy had.
However, investigations  by Weekly Citizen established that the recruitment of the workers in question was allegedly secretly done under the watch of the county secretary Eric Aori.
The source said that letters of appointments were not issued to those recruited in fear that the county public service board whose role is to employ may eventually use them to sue the executive for overstepping its mandate.
Sources further added that those recruited have already been assigned duty in various wards by the respective ward administrators as market attendants and garbage collectors among other duties.
Before the enforcement officers were deployed to the wards, the county secretary held a secret meeting with all subcounty and ward administrators in his office where he directed them to receive and assign duties to the officers posted to their regions without any conditions.
He told them that those to be sent to their stations could have a special code of introducing themselves from his office but not letters as has always been the tradition of appointment.
Over five administrators who talked to this reporter but sought anonymity because of the sensitivity of the matter said that they already have received a minimum of three new members of staff whom they have assigned duty.
One administrator said that they were warned against giving any information to reporters or any stranger regarding   the “illegal employment” and those found to go against the warning could face the sack.
The administrators revealed that majority of those employed were brought in by members of the county assembly and are their relatives while others are their political supporters.
“This project of recruitment of enforcement officers is the brain child of some MCAs and members of the county executive so as to undermine the county public service board which is mandated to carry out employment,” an administrator who never wanted to be quoted stated.
Members of the county public service board accused the executive of undermining their duties by not assigning duties from the user departments.
Members of the public and other leaders led by Thaddeus Nyabaro have raised their concern over how those who are now working in the field were recruited as the board whose responsibility is to recruit was is not aware .
Nyakundi and Ken Oboso who is in charge of the docket of employment told us that they had not abused their positions as it was being claimed.
The two said that the move by the county executive not to assign them duties regarding their mandate for the fifth month running was not hurting them as individuals but residents of Nyamira County who needed services.
Last week, members of the county assembly led by the leader of the minority Jackson Mogusu questioned why the executive was not assigning the board duties yet they were withdrawing huge salaries from the county .
Speaking in the assembly, other members Beautah Omanga (Bogichora), Thaddeus Nyabaro (Ekerenyo), William Abuya (nominated), Benson Sironga (Rigoma) and Peter Maroro (Manga) faulted the executive for arrogating itself roles and duties which they were not supposed to do.