Meru Governor Kawira Mwangaza impeached again


• Members of the Meru County Assembly impeached the governor in a motion held on Wednesday.

• A total of 59 MCAs, all of whom were at the Assembly, out of the total 69 voted in support of the impeachment motion.

Kawira Mwangaza.
Image: Handout

Meru Governor Kawira Mwangaza has been impeached.

Members of the Meru County Assembly impeached the governor in a motion held on Wednesday.

A total of 59 MCAs, all of whom were at the Assembly, out of the total 69 voted in support of the impeachment motion.

"At this juncture, it is my pleasure to announce the ayes have it. The motion has passed and the governor stands impeached by the County Assembly of Meru," Meru County Assembly Speaker Ayub Bundi declared.

The 1o-hour motion debated to eject the governor was brought by Majority Leader Evans Mawira.

This is the second time the governor is impeached by the Meru Assembly after the first attempt last year failed at the Senate Assembly.

Attempts by Governor Mwangaza's defence team to absolve her from blame fell flat as the MCAs went on to eject her from office.

The impeachment comes after MCAs on Monday completed mandatory public participation hearings in nine sub-counties and retreated to write a final report that was tabled in the Assembly on Wednesday. 

MCAs accused Mwangaza of committing seven violations which formed grounds for her impeachment.

In the first count, the MCAs accused Mwangaza of misappropriation and misuse of county resources.

They claimed the governor has been among others, embezzling county funds using her relatives including sisters, a brother and a nephew.

They accused the Meru governor of making withdrawals of county funds under the guise of payment for various supplies that were made by her relatives.

The MCAs also claimed Mwangaza diverted county resources for personal use.

“Diversion and misuse of county resources including funds and vehicles to run the governor's charity deemed Okolea despite promising the senate to refrain from conflicting official county officials and Okolea operations,” Mawira said.

Mwangaza was also accused of nepotism and unrelated unethical practices, where she is said to have employed her relatives.

She is also accused of taking her relatives on overseas trips in the guise that they are experts.

The MCAs also alleged bullying, vilification and demeaning of other leaders in the county, illegal appointments, and usurpation of statutory powers.

Mwangaza is also accused of contempt of court, illegally naming a public road after her husband without following statutory procedures and contempt of the Assembly.

Lawyer Danstan Omari on Wednesday put up a spirited fight to defend Governor  Mwangaza against accusations levelled towards her.

While shielding his client from nepotism claims, Omari argued that allegations the Governor employed her close relatives to office are baseless.

"If you were to define a relative then all Merus are relatives because about one million plus population are said to have originated from one person," Omari said.

On grounds that the governor failed to honour an invite by the Assembly to shed light on accusations facing her, Pmari said the Assembly had no powers to do so.

Justice and Legal Affairs Committee of the Meru County had summoned the Governor to respond to claims facing her.

"Does the assembly have powers or any standing order to summon the governor? I would want to be shown where that appears," he said.

Lawyer Omari at the same time took issues with the name tabled at the Assembly for impeachment.

Omari noted that the person by the name of Bishop Kawira Faith Mwangaza is non-existent.

On the question of Procurement, Omari argued that the Governor is not a signatory to any bid hence the assembly cannot punish collectively.

Omari was given two hours to defend the governor against the planned impeachment.

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