County closes Kisii Sports Club over Sh14m land rate arrears

Kisii Sports Club

The main entrance to Kisii Sports Club, which the county government closed on June 22, 2021 over a debt  of Sh14 million.

Photo credit: Ondari Ogega | Nation Media Group

What you need to know:

  • The club’s chairperson, Mr Andrew Kombo, said the arrears date back to 1963 when it was started.

The Kisii County Government has ordered closure of the iconic Kisii Sports Club over land rent rates arrears of Sh14 million.

The club’s chairperson, Mr Andrew Kombo, said the arrears date back to 1963 when it was started.

“We are wondering why the county government has ordered the closure of the club now. We admit we have not been paying the land rates because the facility had been exempted from such. This is because it is the only public social facility we have in Kisii,” said Mr Kombo.

He noted that it is suspect that the club is being closed now when the county government leadership has issues with the assembly leadership.

Mr Kombo said 98 percent of the club leadership is affiliated with the county government.

“This is just a way of escalating the issues at hand,” said Mr Kombo, who is the director of legal services at the county assembly.

Elimu Academy’s case

Meanwhile, the county’s enforcement and revenue officers on Friday morning stormed Elimu Academy, a school associated with Kisii County Assembly Speaker David Kombo.

The enforcement officers who went to the school at around 4 am demanded that the school management team, which was not in at the time, pays rent arrears amounting to Sh517,000.

The land on which the school sits belongs to Kisii County Government.

In a statement to the media, the Elimu Academy management regretted the Friday morning incident, saying it was uncalled for.

"However genuine the gripe, raiding the school at odd hours is a sign of malice. As the management, we see this as the extension of the wars going on in the assembly. Elimu Academy is a Limited enterprise with due and proper channels of communication that should be used by the county in following up any claim,” the management said.

Assembly wrangles

The events came just a day after efforts by MCAs to end the leadership statement in the assembly ended in disarray.

The MCAs had formed a committee of 10 members to resolve differences that have divided the assembly right in the middle.

Wrangling has taken place in the assembly for over a year, paralysing House business.

The wrangles involve Speaker David Kombo, who is the club chair’s father, and Clerk James Nyaoga who are both in office courtesy of court orders.

Each side has employed both legal and other crude means to control the office.

The committee was formed following discussions by MCAs on Tuesday.

Both sides stuck to hardline positions, with some MCAs asking the embattled Speaker not to set foot in the assembly.

Stalemate continues

Birongo Ward MCA Bernard Ogari, who represented Speaker Kombo in the 10-member committee, said the impasse remains.

“We are not making any progress. Both sides have stood their ground,” said Mr Ogari.

The Nation has discovered plans by the group pushing for Speaker Kombo's ouster to file a petition in court over a mace said to be missing.

There are fears the House will stand dissolved i members miss eight consecutive sittings in a row.

Many of the MCAs against Speaker Kombo said there shall be no business in the assembly until he leaves office. They insist they impeached him and that he cannot conduct House business.

A Gazette notice dated May 27, 2021 says the county assembly approved a motion for Speaker Kombo’s removal from office by impeachment. But the de-gazettement notice was later revoked.

Mr Kombo is accused of abuse of office, corruption, gross misconduct, and failing to procure a group life insurance and group accident cover for the MCAs.

In March, Mr Kombo directed the assembly clerk to go on a compulsory leave pending investigations.

But the clerk obtained interim orders barring his suspension over alleged corruption, gross misconduct and abuse of office.