What you need to know:
- 38 MCAs voted for Mr Oduol's ouster against one.
- As early as 8am ahead of the special sitting slated which was for 9:30am Monday, armed security officials were camping at the assembly premises.
- Some youths began chanting anti-Oduol slogans.
The Siaya County Assembly has passed a motion to impeach Deputy Governor William Oduol, with 38 Members of the County Assembly (MCAs) voting in favour of his ouster, against one.
In the motion that was tabled by East Asembo MCA Gordon Onguru, Mr Oduol was charged with gross violation of the Constitution and other laws, abuse of office and gross misconduct and misleading the public by giving false information.
“Mr Oduol interfered with procurement of contractors for various road projects in the county and that of supply and delivery of certified seed and fertiliser, contrary to provisions of section 47 (1) of the Public Procurement Act, 2015,” said Mr Onguru while tabling the impeachment motion today.
The motion also alleged that the embattled deputy governor “coerced the head of county procurement unit to give him a raw evaluation report for the tender on supply and delivery of certified seeds and fertiliser”.
Mr Oduol is also facing charges of abusing the office of deputy governor.
“Banking on the authority of his office, he was forced to incur approximately Sh18 million for purposes of renovating his office, purchase of furniture and office equipment; an expenditure that was not in the budget and not in procurement plan,” read the motion.
Mr Oduol is also accused of using his position to bully junior officers.
“It is on record that the deputy governor demanded constant briefings from the director of Supply Chain Management directly on matters of procurement, despite the director not being answerable to him,” stated the motion.
While supporting the motion, North Uyoma MCA Booker Washington said Mr Oduol caused unnecessary wrangles that hindered development and should be impeached to pave the way for development.
“If you ask me to choose between Mr Oduol and the development of Siaya, I will go for the latter. The reason all of us were elected to represent electorates is development. Therefore, because of the persistent wrangles that we have witnessed, I support the motion,” said the lawmaker.
The assembly formed a 14-member special committee that will investigate the allegations leveled against Mr Oduol and table a report within 10 days, when the matter will be taken before the assembly again.
“After passing of the motion, according to the provisions of the house standing orders, a special committee comprising a third of members, which is 14, is therefore formed to investigate in the next 10 days. The committee shall table a report on the findings,” said the Assembly Majority leader Edwin Otieno.
According to the Constitution, should the assembly ascertain that the grounds for impeachment are solid, then it will proceed to oust Mr Oduol from his seat as the deputy governor.
The matter will then be presented before the Senate, where the final decision would be made.
Despite the calls from different stakeholders to quit, Mr Oduol vowed not to move an inch.
Mr Oduol was also expelled from the Orange Democratic Movement party by Siaya County delegates just hours before the motion in the assembly.
The bad blood between the governor and his deputy pushed three Kenyans to file a petition at the High Court, seeking to declare Mr Orengo unfit to hold public office for infringing on the Constitution and violating the rights of his deputy.
Mr Peter Odhiambo, Mr Erick Onyango, and Ms Elizabeth Akinyi filed the petition under certificate of urgency, naming Mr Oduol as a victim of political intimidation.
Other than declaring the county boss unfit to hold public office, the petitioners also prayed for the reinstatement of privileges and allowances to Mr Oduol and for him to be allowed to discharge his constitutional mandates and offer official residence or provide him with accommodation allowances according to the provisions of the Constitution.
Mr Orengo and the Siaya County Government were listed as the first and second respondents respectively, while Mr Oduol and Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) 1st and 2nd interested parties respectively.
The case has since been transferred to Siaya High Court pending hearing.