Senate left to decide fate of Murang’a governor

Murang’a Governor Mwangi wa Iria has lost a court case challenging his impeachment, leaving his fate in the hands of the Senate.

He will now face a committee formed by the Senate to look into the impeachment petition made by members of the Murang’a County Assembly following allegations of misuse of funds.

High Court Judge Justice Joseph Onguto on Tuesday ruled that the embattled governor would not suffer prejudice.

Mr wa Iria is expected to appear before the Senate team chaired by Kitui Senator David Musila on Wednesday and Thursday.

The committee will look into more than 20 accusations levelled against the governor and make recommendations to the House.

The county chief had argued through his lawyers that the impeachment resolution was not impartial because he was not granted sufficient time to respond, the judge ruled against his contention.

“If Senate continues with the impeachment process it is entitled to protect the interest of counties, it can be allowed to continue with the process, there is no need to involve judicial interference,” said Mr Justice Onguto.

READ: In the land of milk, trouble boils over for Wa Iria

The special committee will deliver it report to the Senate on November 9 and the Senate will decide on the impeachment within the 10 days.

Mr wa Iria suffered another setback when the judge further declined to grant his lawyers a chance to file an appeal.

Mr Paul Muite representing Mr wa Iria had requested the judge to halt his ruling for 14 days as the governor’s moves to the Court of Appeal.

“I have not made any command that must be stopped, the governor did not suffer any prejudice hence there is no reason to issue an injunction for the sake of an appeal,” said Mr Justice Onguto.

The Senate and the Murang’a County Assembly had told court that the governor would get a fair hearing and sought the case to be dismissed.

They had argued that the governor would be better placed to challenge his impeachment only after the Senate has issued its final determination.
However, Mr Muite said the claims against Mr wa Iria were as a result of refusing to be arm twisted by MCAs.

SOURCE: BUSINESS DAILY