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Rejection of Teachers Service Commission nominees plot to undermine Uhuru, say leaders

Sunday October 6 2013

Energy Committee chairman Jamleck Kamau said in Parliament the equipment at the refinery is valued at more than the Sh261 million Essar paid. Photo/FILE

Energy Committee chairman Jamleck Kamau said in Parliament the equipment at the refinery is valued at more than the Sh261 million Essar paid. Photo/FILE 

BILLY MUIRURI
By BILLY MUIRURI
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A parliamentary committee has been accused of plotting to undermine President Uhuru Kenyatta’s authority.

Four  MPs from Murang’a County separately said the Education Committee had been hijacked by forces within Jubilee alliance that are sabotaging Mr Kenyatta.

Led by Kigumo MP Jamleck Kamau, they said the committee chaired by Murang’a Women Representative Sabina Chege had made “a political mistake” by rejecting all Teachers Service Commission members nominated by the President.

The other MPs — Kandara’s Alice Wahome, Clement Wambugu (Mathioya) and Irungu Kang’ata (Kiharu) — accused Ms Chege of not  helping the President have his way.

“She never sought any support from us to at least have some names retained. Rejecting all of them smacked of an ulterior motive against the President,” said Mr Kamau.

On Thursday, the  committee rejected  five nominees and their proposed chairman Kiragu wa Magochi. Those rejected are Ms Jacinta Kapiyo, Mr Mwijuma Mwinyipembe, Mr James Muthuri, Mr Albert Ekirapa and Mr William Makubo.

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The MPs were particularly angered by Mr Magochi’s rejection even after he had successfully gone through a court process to retain him in contention for the top seat. Mr Magochi hails from Murang’a County.

Mr Kamau said Ms Chege ganged up with URP MPs, who felt their region was left out in the list. “It was curious how Majority Leader (Aden Duale) led an onslaught against the President’s list. The committee was used to settle internal supremacy battles within Jubilee,” said Mr Kamau.

Ms Wahome faulted the committee for throwing the baby with the bath water. “It is clear two names  had been introduced into the list illegally. But the committee should have retained Mr Magochi and the three other nominees who had no issues,” she said.

Ms Chege dismissed the accusations that she was used to fight one of her constituents. “It is not about individuals. The whole process was flawed, that is why we asked for a repeat. Those rejected can re-apply. We have not blocked anyone,” she told the Nation on Sunday.

Kangema’s Tiras Ngahu defended Ms Chege, saying the committee was too hostile against the names for her to change anything. “The committee’s findings reveal a blatant abuse of the recruitment process. It has integrity issues and the chairperson could not defend illegalities,” he said.

The committee says in its report that Mr Makubo’s name was not among those forwarded to the President as he was position 16. Only 13 names are supposed to be handed to the President.

The House team also faulted inclusion of Mr Mwinyipembe, noting he had sat in an earlier selection panel for the same positions.