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Chaos, anxiety grip counties as governors go on sacking sprees

?The removal of Migori County Director of Human Resources Gilbert Nyandiga from office over his questionable loyalty to Governor Okoth Obado exemplifies the messy transition period as governors take office.

Mr Nyandiga was attacked and injured by rowdy youths who evicted him from his office because he comes from the same village as Mr Obado’s opponent, Ochillo Ayacko, and had allegedly supported Mr Ayacko.

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Most of the governors, fresh from a bruising political battle, appear to be on a sacking spree as they draw up lists of people they want appointed in their governments.

Nyandiga said he had reported the matter at Migori Police Station, where he recorded a statement before seeking medical treatment.

Governor’s re-election

“I was in my office at around 11am when a gang came in and told me that they knew I did not support the governor’s re-election and that I should leave the office,” said Nyandiga.

He said the 10-man gang roughed him up before frog-marching out of the office and warning him never to set foot in the building again.

Nyandiga said he knew all the attackers, who included a former councillor and youths who have been hanging around politicians in the area.

“I told them I was a public servant who was not supposed to engage in politics but they would not listen and insisted that I campaigned against the governor and that I should get out. I think this is very wrong and the law must take its course,” he said.

Other offices

The attackers then headed to other offices on a mission to flush out other ‘traitors’.

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In Siaya County, youths armed with sticks and placards stormed the county government offices to evict officers, a day after Governor Cornell Rasanga told public servants who opposed his re-election not to report back to work.

Tension and anxiety has paralysed work in most counties as staff await their fate.

In Nyamira and Migori, the Public Service boards have advertised all senior positions, including executive and chief officers, while Homa Bay Governor Cyprian Awiti has already indicated that he will make major changes in his government.

Elsewhere, Kwale County executives have been rendered jobless after the county government advertised their positions.

Those close to Governor Salim Mvurya have said a number of executives might not make it back due to under-performance.

In Meru, Governor Kiraitu Murungi has sacked 85 top officials employed by former Governor Peter Munya, saying he was sending them on indefinite leave to allow for a human and financial resource audit.

Political appointees

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In Laikipia, top political appointees in the former government of Joshua Irungu were also looking at an early exit, according to Governor Ndiritu Muriithi. 

Mr Muriithi said his government would only retain technical staff.

And in Tharaka Nithi, workers on permanent and pensionable terms stayed away from work on Tuesday and yesterday as they awaited communication regarding their fate today (Thursday), when a meeting is planned with Governor Muthomi Njuki.

In the neighbouring Embu County, Governor Martin Wambora has vowed to institute a thorough clean-up of his cabinet. His counterpart in Nyeri, Wahome Gakuru, however assured county government workers that they would not lose their jobs although at least 18 people in the governor’s office are likely to face the sack.

In Elgeyo Marakwet, anxiety has gripped county employees following reports that the top administration was planning a purge of its workforce to streamline services and inject new talent.

A county official who sought anonymity said the most affected would be executives and chief officers.

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