Taita Taveta readies for new governor

Andrew Mwadime who is the Taita Taveta governor elect.



Photo credit: Lucy Mkanyika I Nation Media Group

TaitaTaveta governor-elect Andrew Mwadime and his deputy Christine Kilalo will take the oath of office on Thursday next week.

The event will be held at the Mwatunge grounds in Mwatate sub-county, enabling the duo to start forming their government.

Liverson Mghendi, the chairperson of the Assumption of Office of Governor Committee in the county, said plans for the function were at an advanced stage.

He said the committee had met to ensure a smooth transition from the outgoing administration to the incoming one.

Mr Mghendi, who is also the county secretary, said the committee will facilitate the handover from outgoing Governor Granton Samboja to Mr Mwadime.

"As a committee, we are facilitating a seamless transition of the county government operations. Preparations for the assumption of office by the new governor are almost complete and only a few issues are yet to be concluded," he said.

The date, time and place for the swearing-in ceremony will be published in the Kenya Gazette and County Gazette as required by law.

He said the committee will also facilitate the handing over of the instruments of office, including the county symbols, coat of arms, flag, public seal and Constitution.

"After signing the certificate of the inauguration, the outgoing governor will hand over to his successor the instruments of power and authority during the ceremony," he explained.

Mr Samboja lost the seat after garnering 23,703 votes against Mr Mwadime's 49,901.

He conceded defeat and promised to give Mr Mwadime the necessary support when he needed it. He also directed Mr Mghendi and the executive to ensure a smooth transition.

"I had said during my campaigns that politics is not hatred. The residents expect many great things from the new administration," Mr Samboja said on a local radio station.

According to the Assumption of the Office of Governor Act 2019, elected county bosses are supposed to be sworn in 10 days after the declaration of the final results by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).

The law states that the swearing-in should take place on the first Thursday after the lapse of the 10 days. It states that the swearing-in should occur in a public ceremony before a High Court judge.

It also states that the oath should be administered not earlier than 9am and not later than 5pm.

Chief Justice Martha Koome has appointed 47 judges to preside over the swearing-in of the elected governors.

In Taita Taveta, Justice Anne Ongijo will preside over the oath-taking ceremony of the governor-elect and his deputy.

The act also provides for the formation of the Assumption of Office of the Governor Committee to spearhead the handing over of power in devolved units. The 13-member transition committee is headed by the county secretary.

Other members are the county commissioner, various chief officers, the clerk of the county assembly, representatives from the Judiciary, Ministry of Devolution, National Police Service and National Intelligence Service, and two people nominated by the governor-elect.

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