|Dr Mutua as he announced his cabinet|
|Dr. Sunil Kumar Dhall|
THE Team unveiled by Dr. Alfred Mutua came days ahead of when he had promised. But questions linger as to whether the names were vetted and approved according to the law. At least one of the appointees has a history of fleecing clients of money and it is not clear how the matters were resolved.
"I will be presenting ten names to the County Assembly next week for approval and subsequent appointment to the cabinet",Dr Mutua said as he launched the County Assembly on Wednesday April 10,2013.
Media teams went away, believing that important business in the assembly was over. Little did they know that more important business would be transacted in the afternoon without their presence.
Sources say the same afternoon, Dr. Mutua brought in the list to the Committee of Vetting and obtained a swift approval after which the whole Assembly rubberstamped the list.
On Friday April 12,2013,Dr.Mutua announced his government line-up at Mavoko Municipal chambers in Athi River town.
The cabinet is composed of five men and and four women among them a former world bank consultant Kioko wa Luka who was named to be in charge of the Transport docket.
Others are Joshua Musili (Land,Energy,Environment and Natural Resourses),Ms Naomi Mutie (Health and emergency services),Eng.Francis Wambua (Water,Irrigation and Sanitation),Dr.Sanil Kumar (Trade,Economic Planning and Industrialization),Ms.Hellena Kiilu (Education,Youth and Social Welfare),Ms Faith Wathome (Tourism and Culture) and Larry Wambua (Agriculture,Livestock and cooperative Development).
Dr.Mutua said the Finance and Revenue Collection docket will be filled in due course.
Mr Wa Luka is the most experienced in the team and has served in various places including serveing as County Clerk of the Machakos County Council in the 1980s.
But the most sensational is that of Ms Hellena Kiilu, the current County Commissioner in Embu. Ms Kiilu has been a District Commissioner and has also served in various government Departments including the Anti Drugs agency-NACADA and her hand in the Devolution docket will certainly create a new impetus in the management of Towns and Municipalities in Machakos County.
Mr Wambua, a well known lawyer in Machakos and a close associate of County Assembly Speaker Bernard Mungatta had initially been earmarked as Speaker but dropped off at last minute. His presence in the team will be closely scrutinized in coming days in relation to his past history as a lawyer.
Though Dr Mutua said the team was carefully vetted and approved by the Machakos County Assembly in accordance to the law, it is likely that questions will emerge about one or two of the appointeess.
Mutua directed the team to carryout a comprehensive audit of the county’s resources and identify areas that could be exploited fast for wealth creation.
The governor also announced the freezing of employment of staff in all service boards within the county unless with express authority from his office.“I direct that employment in the county government departments and agencies including boards be frozen unless such employment is cleared in writing by my office”,said Dr.Mutua. There are boards that operate within Machakos like the Kitui based Tanathi Water Services Board and it is still unclear if Dr Mutua’s authority extends to the board, whose leadership is appointed by the minister of the National Government.
He said the directive is aimed at ensuring all appointments in the departments and boards are within the financial ability of the county and are in conformity with the devolution laws.
He said he has crafted what he termed an all inclusive government comprising men and women of integrity and who are professionals in the fields they will be appointed to serve.
"These people have been drawn from all the eight constituencies in the expansive county to ensure fair representation", said the governor.
He outlined his development programmes for implementation by his government and said top on the agenda will be water, food security and unemployment among others.
Dr.Mutua made the announcement in his key address to the County Assembly during its first sitting since the members were sworn in two weeks ago.
The governor reached out to interested local and international investors wishing to invest in the county to come over and invest in the region to help the area grow.
He announced that a major investment forum will be held in Machakos town next week, making the county the first among the rest of the counties to host such an important forum. "We intend to make Machakos county a model economic hub not only in the country but the African continent and beyond", added Dr. Mutua.