HOLDING COUNTY AT RANSOM

Court dismisses suit by sacked Nyandarua executives

Judge says governor enjoys the right to hire and fire those serving as his appointees

In Summary

Kimemia cited the necessity to “reinvigorate my transformation agenda through injection of new strategic competences for optimal performance and accountability to the citizenry” as the reason for sacking the executives.

Nyandarua Governor Francis Kimemia
WINNER: Nyandarua Governor Francis Kimemia
Image: NDICHU WAINAINA

 

The Employment and Labour Relations Court on Wednesday dismissed two petitions filed by four Nyandarua executives who were sacked in August.

Governor Francis Kimemia sacked Venansio Mbataru Kariuki (ICT and Public Administration), Simon Ng’ang’a (Water, Tourism, Environment and Natural Resources), Faith Mbugua (Education) and Rose Muthoni (Industrialisation, Trade and Cooperatives) in a statement issued on the night of August 20.

He cited the necessity to “reinvigorate my transformation agenda through injection of new strategic competences for optimal performance and accountability to the citizenry” as the reason for sacking the executives.

He said the four were no longer serving the interest of residents. The executives challenged their sacking in court.

In her ruling, Justice Monica Mbaru said Kimemia acted within the law, and his mandate, as the elected representative of the people of Nyandarua county, in dismissing the four.

"As is the norm in the Commonwealth jurisdictions, and in the presidential system operating in the country, that the Pleasure Doctrine applied in this instance, hence the governor enjoys the right to hire and fire those serving as his appointees."

The court said no one can hold the county, and a governor who has a limited five-year term and mandate from the people, at ransom using court processes demanding to remain in public offices which they hold at the pleasure of the appointing authority.

The ruling gives Kimemia freedom to proceed and replace the sacked executives. The process of replacing the four had been temporarily halted through court orders obtained in the two petitions.

 

edited by peter obuya