Impeached Siaya DG William Oduol’s Sh1.1 million chair leaves Senate in awe

William Oduol Chair

The chair used by the impeached Siaya Deputy Governor William Oduol presented to a Senate committee hearing his impeachment motion.

Photo credit: Dennis Onsongo | Nation Media Group

The chair that cost taxpayers Sh1,120,000 to ensure the comfort of Siaya Deputy Governor William Oduol was presented to a Senate committee hearing his impeachment motion.

The chair was wheeled into the Senate and several senators surrounded it, some sat on it to test its comfort levels while others swung around on it, laughed and marvelled at how it was so simple yet so expensive.

The office armchair is made of heavy wood which appears to be mahogany, has a high seat back and has foam tucked and pinned onto it from the beginning of the seat back to the edge of the seat. The vintage-looking armchair is then set onto wheels, just like other ordinary office chairs.

“You know we were told it was the lowest bid. You know it can fit the two of you, maybe you and your spouse. Now you have all seen it. That is the chair they were (talking about),” said a member of the Committee as he directed Senators to check out the chair.

Deputy Governor Oduol rebutted claims that he bought one chair for Sh 1.12 million, saying there had been a typo in the cost of the seat and the price had been for three chairs, not one.

The 11-member special Senate committee sat today for the second time to listen to representatives from the Siaya County Assembly who will make their submissions regarding the impeachment.

The impeachment comes in the wake of Deputy Governor William Oduol taking on Siaya Governor James Orengo for allegedly colluding with junior staff to defraud the county government of millions.

Mr Orengo denied the claims.

Refurbished office

According to county documents, Mr Oduol spent Sh18 million to refurbish his office and purchase new furniture once he was sworn into office.

In addition to the Sh1.12 million seat which he said was an orthopedic chair, he also had several other pieces of furniture purchased for his office.

The monies spent on the new furniture included Sh336, 700 for a presidential mahogany desk, Sh567, 700 for a bookshelf cabinet, Sh756, 700 for five pieces of curved coffee tables with accompanying stools, Sh238, 840 for an executive orthopedic desk chair back and fully spring seat, Sh178,200 for a mahogany in and out office tray, Sh254,800 for executive custom made round tables finished in two packs, Sh2,844,000 for 12 executive high back orthopedic desk black leather chairs and Sh910,00 for a custom made seven seater executive curved sofa.

Additionally, other amounts spent on purchasing furniture included Sh 1, 120, 000 for a Priya executive orthopedic desk chair and fully spring seat, Sh1,052, 200 for a six meters conference table, Sh168, 000 for Priya executive black, fully spring visitor seats, Sh211, 400 for a grooved coffee table and Sh330, 000 for an executive custom made desk and fully spring seat.

Mr Oduol was impeached on June 8 on charges of buying furniture at exorbitant prices and misusing his power to influence the awarding of tenders among other accusations.

He is set to know his fate on Friday.