Governor warned of attack on chambers

The chambers, the Speaker’s office, his deputy’s and that of the assembly clerk were razed by a fire at 3am on Monday.

Wednesday March 9 2016

A man takes a closer look at the Makueni county assembly offices which were razed down on March 7, 2016. Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana said he had warned through an SMS the County Speaker of the imminent attack but received no response. PHOTO | PIUS MAUNDU | NATION MEDIA GROUP

A man takes a closer look at the Makueni county assembly offices which were razed down on March 7, 2016. Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana said he had warned through an SMS the County Speaker of the imminent attack but received no response. PHOTO | PIUS MAUNDU | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

By PIUS MAUNDU
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Makueni Governor Kivutha Kibwana had warned Speaker Stephen Ngelu of an imminent attack on the county assembly chambers.

The chambers, the Speaker’s office, his deputy’s and that of the assembly clerk were razed by a fire at 3am on Monday.

“I had shared intelligence with the Speaker that there was an imminent attack on the assembly premises aimed at disabling or removing some computers,” said Prof Kibwana (right) when he toured the building in the company of the Speaker on Tuesday.

He added: “In an SMS, I told the speaker: ‘Intelligence indicates some people want to disable or even remove computers from your premises.’ But he did not respond.”

The governor said the burning down of the assembly premises would cripple county government business.

Tuesday, Prof Kibwana described the incident as unfortunate and called on the Inspector-General of Police to set up a team to investigate the cause of the fire.

After assessing the damage, the governor held a meeting with County Commissioner Pauline Dola and addressed the press at his office.

On Monday, Mr Ngelu addressed reporters outside the charred chambers and termed the incident an accident. He said the destruction of the property would not affect the assembly’s business.

“Although fire has razed  the assembly premises and offices, this will not distract the assembly. We are ready to continue operating, even if it means working from a tent,” he said.

The speaker was flanked by assembly clerk Edward Libendi and the county’s Directorate of Criminal Investigation boss, Mr Isack Onyango.

Mr Onyango said the police had started investigating the possible cause of the inferno.

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