HE'S AT WORK

'Fake news' Baringo chief denies sacking

Interior CS Matiang'i said administrator was fired for reporting hunger deaths

Rift Valley Regional Coordinator Mwongo Chimwaga(right) confers with Tiaty MP William Kamket during food donation at Nginyang in Tiaty, Baringo County on Tuesday.
Image by JOSEPH KANGOGO
In Summary

Jackson Ronei was summoned to record statement for exposing names of people who died of hunger 

Rift Valley Regional Coordinator Mwongo Chimwaga addressing the public during food donation at Nginyang in Tiaty, Baringo County on Tuesday.
Rift Valley Regional Coordinator Mwongo Chimwaga addressing the public during food donation at Nginyang in Tiaty, Baringo County on Tuesday.
Image: JOSEPH KANGOGO

A Baringo assistant chief the government said was sacked for claiming people have died from hunger is still at work.

Kositei Ronei yesterday denied he was sacked, adding that he has not received a dismissal letter from his bosses.

Tiaty Deputy Subcounty Commissioner Jacob Awuor told the Star he has not received any information about Ronei's reported sacking.

On Wednesday, Interior CS Fred Matiang’i said in an interview with a local radio station that Ronei was fired owing to unspecified indiscipline cases.

“The chief purporting to report on the drought situation in Baringo was fired long time ago and therefore he is no longer serving the government in any capacity,” he said.

But Ripko-Kositei ward MCA Daniel Tuwit said the assistant chief is still on duty, disputing Matiangi’s report that he has been relieved of his duties.

“In fact the CS could be confusing Ronei with the former Kositei chief Ezron Twarit who was sacked sometime last year on grounds of alcoholism,” Tuwit said.

The chief together with the MCA were summoned last week to record a statement at Nginyang police station for exposing names of the people who died of hunger in Tiaty.

Contacted for comment, Baringo County Commissioner Henry Wafula said the chief was facing disciplinary action but gave no further details.

With the help of the assistant chief and other sources,the media reported at least 22 people have lost their lives due to hunger in Baringo and Turkana counties.

But CS Matiang'i dismissed claims of death reported  by mainstream and social media.

“The County Commissioner in Baringo has confirmed that no deaths have been occasioned by current drought situation,” Matiang’i said.

He said the government is in charge of the drought situation reported in 13 counties.

Baringo Senator Gideon Moi urged the government to stop intimidating and threatening local leaders.

He spoke while distributing relief food at Nginyang in Tiaty subcounty on Tuesday.

He was backed by Tiaty MP William Kamket who said chiefs and MCAs work in the villages and so they understand better what is going on.

Devolution CS Eugene Wamalwa said no lives had been lost. He said no leader shall be victimised or threatened over hunger reports.

But Rift Valley Regional Commissioner Mwongo Chimwanga said he is doing his best to deal with the problem.

“In our Strategic Food Reserves, we have over four million bags of maize. What we are doing is moving food from where there is plenty to where there is less,” he said.