OMUTHIYA – The rift in the Omuthiya local authority widened further when seven councillors failed to reach consensus on council affairs.
The councillors have not been seeing eye to eye since the leaking of a letter by outgoing CEO Samuel Mbango in June containing an array of corruption and nepotism allegations, and accusations of maladministration.
The spat stems from the compilation of a report in which the councillors were requested by the minister of urban and rural development to state the reasons why they did not want to renew Mbango’s contract, which expires end of August.
It is however alleged that not all councillors were involved in the compilation as some were not invited to the meeting to add their inputs. The meeting was held last week and the council was required to respond to the letter not later than August 19.
Council is divided between a group that includes mayor Katrina Uusiku, her deputy Heskiel Nanyeni, management committee chairperson Beata Nashongo and member Enos Shipahu, which is pushing for non-renewal of the contract.
Constituents of the other group – which supports the contract renewal – are councillors Susan Uukongo, Toivo Nghilalulwa and Joseph Kakungha. This group says it has not received any satisfactory reasons from their peers as to why the contract should not be renewed. Some councillors, who claim to have been excluded from the meeting, messaged New Era. “We do not know how many councillors were part of this meeting, nor the content of the report. Yet all councillors received letters from the minister requiring us to write a comprehensive report on why council does not want to renew the CEO’s contract. This is just a ploy executed by a clique.”
“We would therefore like to state publicly and for the minister’s sake to take note that what is contained in the report does not reflect the views and opinions of all councillors.”
The issue of council breaking the rules and regulations has been the order of the day lately, as some councillors also convene meetings irrespective of whether a quorum is met or not.
Efforts to get comment from mayor Uusiku proved futile, despite her promising to get back to this reporter.