Meru Governor Kawira Mwangaza on 8th November survived a second impeachment motion lodged against her by the Meru County Assembly at the Senate.
Majority of the Senators who appeared upset by the mistreatment of the governor by Meru MCAs threw out all the seven allegations leveled against the Governor.
The embattled Governor faced 7 accusations including; misappropriation and misuse of county resources, nepotism, bullying and vilification of other leaders, illegal appointments and usurpation of statutory powers, contempt of court, illegally naming a public road after her husband and contempt of the Assembly.
“The result of the division indicate that the Senate has not upheld any of the impeachment charges. The Senate has failed to remove from office by impeachment Governor Kawira Mwangaza and the Governor accordingly continues to hold office,” Senate Speaker Amason Kingi declared after the Senators completed casting their votes.
The senate hearing witnessed different sides table their submissions as Senators posed questions to the Governor and lawyers representing the MCAs. The MCAs through their lawyer Muthonu Thiankolu leveled the accusations against the Governor arguing that the county chief had demonstrated inability to work with other leaders leading to irreconcilable differences. He pleaded with the Senators not to spare the Governor as she had already faced three motions calling for her impeachment.
One of the witnesses took to the stand alleging that Governor Kawira Mwangaza’s husband had threatened him and ordered him not to step back into his office despite a court order allowing him to do so. “We made several efforts to be reinstated back to our office because we were sent home procedurally,” Paul Mwaki Arimi, the CEO of Alcoholic Drinks Control Board-Meru said.
Kawira however pleaded not guilty to all the seven charges and dismissed the evidence tabled by the MCAs. Her lawyers put up a spirited fight by tabling their evidence and lined up various witnesses to defend her. “The issue of misappropriation of funds. We do not have any report from the Auditor General, what we have is a complaint presented to the EACC,” her lawyers stated.
The Meru Governor accused the MCAs of being misled citing that they had already buried the hatchet in the past.
In the first charge, 19 senators supported the allegation of misappropriation and misuse of county funds, while 28 lawmakers disagreed with the substantiation of the claim. Regarding the second charge of nepotism, 5 Senators voted in favor, whereas 45 voted against. In the third charge of bullying and demeaning other leaders, 3 senators favored her impeachment, and 44 dissented. Concerning the fourth charge of illegal appointments and usurpation of statutory powers, 20 Senators sided with the MCAs, while 27 disagreed. For the fifth charge of contempt of court, 3 Senators found sufficient evidence, while 44 voted that the charge had not been substantiated.
In the charge of illegally naming a road after her husband, 4 Senators agreed that the evidence met the required threshold, while 43 disagreed. On the final charge of Contempt of County Assembly, 10 Senators agreed that the Governor had shown contempt, whereas 37 disagreed.