Migori Governor Okoth Obado has refuted claims that he is among governors who have sacked county staff not loyal to them since being sworn into office.
This follows a story carried in the Sunday Nation which mentioned him as being part of governors re-elected for a second term who had removed some staff they accuse of supporting their opponents even after the Public Service Commission Chairperson Margaret Kobia told the governors to adhere to the legal steps of terminating the services of a worker employed either on permanent or contract terms to avert court battles.
Speaking to the Nation by phone Monday, Mr Obado denied sending home any of his workers, whom he said are about 3,000 in number, while terming the claims as “unfounded allegations that are meant to portray him in bad public light”.
“I have not sent any of my staff home. This kind of story is painting me in bad picture. I need an apology on the story you carried on your Sunday paper as this is not the first time I have been getting bad publicity from your papers,” said Mr Obado.
He complained of being singled out among the governors accused of sending away staff who campaigned against them during the recent elections, saying that he had done nothing wrong.
“This kind of story portrays me in bad public image and more so by going ahead and using a big picture of me. At least I should have been contacted before publishing such a story and singling me out among the governors when I have not done nothing. This is out rightly unfair,” he said.
On the reports that goons perceived to be his supporters forcibly evicted the County Director of Human Resources Gilbert Nyandiga on grounds of his questionable loyalty to him, the governor flatly refused to take responsibility saying that “you cannot put me to be responsible for people I do not know”.
He claimed that he had just heard of the incident in the media sometimes back as “he has been sick since the elections” and has not been frequenting his office.
“I am not aware that it happened. I also heard about it sometimes (back) that goons were harassing staff but I have not heard about it again. You should have called Mr Nyandiga to know if he was really harassed by goons,” said the governor.