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Endless wrangles killing spirit of devolution, ward reps told

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By ONYANGO K’ONYANGO
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A section of Rift Valley leaders lashed out at members of County Assemblies (MCAs) over incessant fights.

They said the constant bickering would kill the spirit of devolution. The leaders challenged MCAs to put their differences aside and deliver on their campaign promises.

Led by Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen, they accused the ward reps of colluding with enemies of devolution in tainting the image of counties.

The leaders were speaking at Kibigos in Elgeyo Marakwet County on Sunday during the burial of Lelan Ward MCA Vincent Kibor Tanui.

“It is very sad to see how enemies of devolution are collaborating with ward reps to bring chaos in our assemblies across the country to show wananchi that they did a mistake to vote for devolution. They want us to go back to the dark days, but we won’t allow that to happen,” the Elgeyo Marakwet senator said.

Mr Murkomen said the Senate would not sit back and watch as MCAs paralyse operations in counties instead of offering services to the electorate.

“Your fights must be tailored towards bringing good roads, electricity and water but not killing the spirit of devolution which you are elected to protect,” he said.

The senator was accompanied by former Keiyo South MP Jackson Kiptanui, Elgeyo Marakwet Woman Rep Jane Chebaibai and Kerio Valley Development Authority managing director David Kimosop among others.

Elgeyo Marakwet Governor Alex Tolgos asked MCAs to seek dialogue whenever they have problems with speakers or county bosses rather than resorting to ‘drama’, which he said derails development at the grassroots.

“You need to embrace dialogue but not these fights we see around. They are unhealthy to devolution,” the governor said.

Marakwet East MP Kangogo Bowen and his Marakwet West counterpart William Kisang accused MCAs of failing to champion the interests of residents.

“It is unfortunate and foolhardy that MCAs can gang up against certain bills meant to better the lives of those who elected them,” Mr Bowen said.

Elgeyo Marakwet MCAs recently shot down a bill that would have empowered women and persons with disabilities.

This comes barely a day after Homa Bay County Assembly Speaker Elizabeth Ayoo got into more trouble after her office was sprayed with what police say was livestock pesticide and her furniture broken.

Wrangles have been witnessed across the country including in Nairobi, Kisii and Nyandarua counties.

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