Joho wants county-led swearing in, but ‘he will not sideline state’

Mombasa Governor-elect Hassan Joho has rejected major involvement by the national government in his swearing in.

Joho and the Jubilee-led government have long been at odds.

Monday’s meeting to discuss the swearing-in ceremony scheduled for next Tuesday and taking the oath of office ended prematurely.

It was also attended by representatives from the Devolution ministry, National Police Service and National Intelligence Service.

The county was represented by county secretary Francis Thoya, assembly clerk Salim Juma, a county lawyer and a representative from the county public service.

A source privy to what transpired on Monday and Tuesday told the Star the county officials said they do not need favours from the national government.

The county claimed to have the capacity of organising the swearing-in ceremony by itself.

State not sidelined

Joho was reelected and his team said the national government cannot facilitate the handing over of an office to a non-existing “incoming governor”.

But Joho’s spokesman Richard Chacha said security briefings have been held. He said the assumption of office is an event anchored in law and Joho cannot sideline the national government.

“In all the meetings held, the state has been represented by a lady from [the] Devolution [ministry],” he said.

Already, the Council of Governors has trashed plans by the Ministry of Devolution to take charge of oath taking and assumption of office. The CoG demands respect for autonomy.

The Devolution CS has no constitutional role in supervising the county government, CoG chairman Josphat Nanok said Wednesday.

On Thursday, the Ministry of Devolution and Planning ran a full-page advert detailing the programme for assumption of office for all 47 governors-elect.

“The MoDP is only a member of the committee and therefore has no place in supervising county governments or dictating the programme of the swearing-in of the governor,” Nanok said.

Mohamed Hatimi, an expert in law, concurred with Nanok. He said that in 2013 when Joho was being sworn in, the national government only came in through the Transitional Authority.

Mombasa county commissioner Evans Achoki said a meeting was held Tuesday “and all is fine”.

No discord, we have consensus

Chacha said eight meetings have been held and the event will be a collaboration between the two levels of government. He denied there is a disagreement.

Devolution CS Mwangi Kiunjuri said the Joho will be sworn in at Mama Ngina Drive. Joho is supposed to take the oath not earlier than 10am and not later than 2pm.

Achoki said, “We are one”, rubbishing the feud that existed between him and Joho, and the county and national government.

“We have held meetings together and we all agreed that the ceremony should take place on 22. It will be a colourful event,” he said.

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