The Employment and Labour Relations Court sitting in Nakuru has suspended the vetting of 10 nominees to county executive posts until a case challenging the list is heard and determined.
The 10 were named by Governor Lee Kinyanjui last week.
Justice Stephen Radido on Thursday issued temporary orders restraining the county assembly from proceeding to vet the nominees.
Vetting was scheduled to take place on October 23 and 24.
“The issues raised need to be thoroughly addressed by the court. I hereby suspend vetting of the 10 nominees pending a ruling on the morning of October 24,” said Justice Radido, while issuing the directive.
Nakuru Town West MP Samuel Arama on Tuesday moved to court and sued Governor Kinyanjui over the list.
In his application under a certificate of urgency before the court, the MP through his lawyer Juma Nyagaka argued that the list of CECs presented for vetting does not represent the composition of the cosmopolitan county.
“The list presented to the county assembly for vetting by the governor has not considered minority communities living in the county as enshrined in the Constitution,” states part of the petition filed in court.
The MP argued that the process was flawed and the list does not meet the thresholds of ethnic balance, cultural diversity and regional representation.
In an affidavit sworn by the MP and filed in court, Mr Arama termed the list unfair, unconstitutional and against the County Governments Act.
He urged the court to annul.
The county government lawyers Gordon Ogolla and Karanja Mbugua stated that the application was premature and said it was the role of the county assembly to scrutinise the list.
The lawyers asked the court to strike out the petition.
They claimed the county assembly had issued a notice asking anybody with an issue with the list to raise it before the vetting panel, but the legislator opted to rush to court.
“The MP should have waited until the vetting exercise is complete before moving to court to challenge the list,” said Mr Mbugua.
The court will give its ruling on the matter on October 24.
Last Thursday, Governor Kinyanjui forwarded the list of the 10 nominated county executives to the county assembly of Nakuru for vetting.
Mr Kinyanjui nominated his close aide Raymond Komen Kimutai for the position of county executive member for Education, ICT and E-government.
Others nominated include former Kiambu County Health CEC Dr Jonah Mwangi nominated to head the Health docket.
Dr Peter Evans Kiplang’at was nominated to head the Trade, Industry, Marketing and Tourism docket; Ms Lucy Wanjiku Kariuki to the Lands, Housing and Physical Planning docket; Mr Lawrence Mwangangi to the Public Service, Training and Devolution docket.
Mr Joseph Irungu Mburu was nominated for Infrastructure CEC, Ms Halima Gababa Abdulahi for Youth Gender, Culture, Sports and Social Services; Mr Festus Kipkoech Ng’eno for Water, Environment, Energy and Natural Resources); Dr Immaculate Njuthe for Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries; and Mr Joseph Kiuna for Finance and Economic Planning.
Kinyanjui has submitted names to the county assembly for vetting.