Mutonguni Ward Updates: The Appeal Ruling Aftermaths

Thursday June 21, Kitui. By Brian Peter

File Photo: Residents of Mutonguni Ward hold demonstations outside the Kitui County Assembly in February 2018 decrying the lack of representation resulting from court cases that have dragged on for almost a year since August 8th elections. In an appeal rulling yesterday, the Kitui High Court ordered IEBC to conduct fresh elections

Kitui West political craze has reincarnated for a second time this year, after the High Court of Kitui ruled for a by-election for the Mutonguni Ward seat.

However, mixed signals are flying all over the public sphere; as little whispering ghosts hint another possibility of an appeal by one of the candidates in the tussle.

Despite one of the contestants, Musee Mati issueing a press release today, accepting the appeal rulling, and admitting he’s ready to go back to the ballot; his counterpart Felix Baridi Mbevo might have different ideas all together. The likelihood of filling an appeal with the Court of Appeal is high, as his legal representation maintains a no comment status towards the buzz.

Meanwhile, the former MCA Kithuka is suddenly on overdrive, as he prepares to unleash his bag of surprises for this banquet. Little tea parties and closed-door meetings are currently being held in one of the major towns in Kitui West, and the terms of reference are so obvious.

As an aura of uncertainty and anxiety looms over Mutonguni Ward, those in the political know are hinting possibility of a tough race in the by-election. Will it be Baridi of Narc, or Mati of CCM, or will the former MCA hon. Kithuka of Wiper carry the day; in the most controversial county assembly position since August 8 elections?

Follow Kitui Newspaper to stay informed as the drama unfolds in Mutonguni Ward

It’s Fresh Elections For Mutonguni Ward, High Court Rules

Kitui, Wednesday June 20. By Brian Peter

Kitui High court Judge Mutende reads her rulling on the Mutonguni Ward appeal earlier this afternoon. She directed IEBC to conduct fresh elections.

Kitui West will be holding a second by-election this year, according to the rulling made today by the High Court of Kitui.

Following an appeal filed by Hon. Felix Baridi Mbevo, after the Kitui Magistrates Court nulified his win and granted victory to Musee Mati, Justice Mutende rulled that fresh elections should be conducted to give Mutonguni Ward a new MCA.

In her verdict, Justice Mutende stated that there were errors made in the rulling made by the magistrates Court in their past verdict. She rulled that provisional results should not have been used to determine the petition; and that the votes margin between the petitioner,Musee Mati, and the first respondent, Felix Mbevo, was so small it should have called for a votes recount and scrutiny. She also noted that form 34As were not availed to the court before the rulling was made.

Justice Mutende ordered that the IEBC conduct fresh elections for Mutonguni Ward; and that the first respondent, Musee Mati, pay the appealant, Hon. Felix Mbevo and IEBC all the costs incured during the legal suit.

Breaking News:Kitui Sugar Trader and Wife Released on Bond

By Brian Peter

Monday June 18, Kitui.

Mt. Kenya Distributors proprietor Mr Mwangi and his Wife Maggie celebrate their freedom, after the Kitui Magistrates Court released Mr Mwangi on a 1M bond this evening

The Mount Kenya Distributors proprietor Mr Mwangi and his wife Maggie have been released on 1million bond after being incancerated from Tuesday last week, over allegations of distributing contraband sugar in their stores in Kitui town.

Mr Mwangi has been detained in the Kitui Police cells while his wife was separately held in Matuu Police Station, following their arrests last week.
The incident drew a lot of media and public attention, with the Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu disrupting a crucial county meeting to, in the company of several local legislators and county officials, witness the arrest and impounding of the suspected contraband sugar consignment by the police.

Speaking yesterday at a church function in Yatta, the governor cautioned those with plans to dump cointetfeit goods in Kitui County and rebuked in strong terms the alleged sale of suspected contaminated sugar to unsuspecting Kitui residents.

However, samples of the impounded sugar have been send to the government labs for tests to ascertain whether they are really toxic as claimed, and by the time of going to press, no official lab results have been availed.

Upon seeking comments on the allegations, his legal team has requested that the Mwangis be allowed to rest first, since they have had a stressful week, but will explain things out to the media later.

Help Dj Mwem’s youngest brother Caleb fight cancer, kindly send your contributions to the paybill number on the poster. #GetWellCaleb

Governor Ngilu Hosts Proposed Kitui Municipality Status Meeting

Saturday 16 June,Kitui. By Barrack Muli, Courtesy of the Governor’s Press Unit

Kitui governor Charity Ngilu addresses stakeholders at the consultative forum for Kitui municipality held today at the KEFRI offices.

The journey towards attaining a Municipal Charter of the Municipality of Kitui got a boost today after Governor Charity Ngilu convened a Kitui Community Consultative Forum on the conferment of Municipality Status meeting at KEFRI, Kitui town.

The meeting, that attracted a countywide turn up, consulted on the possibility of restoring boundaries of the Municipality of Kitui as were in former Kitui Municipal Council; and as captured in the Integrated Strategic Urban Development Plan (ISUDP); or as may subsequently be altered as shall be the boundaries of the Municipality of Kitui.

Addressing the meeting after lengthy negotiations, Ngilu listed Kitui Township ward, Kyangwithya East Ward, Kyangwithya West Ward, Matinyani Ward, Nzambani Ward and Mulango Ward as the wards within the impending municipality.

She said that the proposed plan will see the realization of an efficient and accountable management that will embrace a Citizen Participatory approach, check on public resources usage and promote efficiency in service delivery.
The Governor noted that the Municipality plan will promote social cohesiveness and a sense of civic duty and responsibility among the inhabitants and stakeholders in the Municipality in order to facilitate collective action and commitment towards achieving a more stable community.

According to Ngilu, the establishment will aid in providing better services, laws and other matters for Municipality’s benefit to foster the economic, social and environmental well-being of its community.

“The approach seeks to promote integrated wastes management system, provide water and sanitation services and infrastructure, storm drainage, walkways and other non-motorized transport infrastructure, street lighting, parking bays, recreational parks and green spaces among many,” Said Ngilu.

Present in the meeting were the County Executive Committee Member for Lands, Infrastructure, Housing and Urban Development Eng. Jacob Kakundi who said that there shall be a municipality board that will comprise of nine members, with four members appointed through a competitive process by the County Executive Committee and five nominated by numerous bodies.

He said that the charter remains very key to certify compliance with the law in regards to devolution exercise, attract grant from the World Bank of sh. 50m for two years plus Sh. 232million in five consecutive years to improve service delivery.
The provisions of the Charter shall come to effect upon the resolution of the County Assembly.

Kitui Deputy Speaker Emeritus Musya said reaffirmed the County assembly’s commitment to ensure that bills supporting growth of the people are passed expeditiously. He led a team of MCAs in pledging support of the proposed charter.

Some of the roles of the Board of the Municipality shall be: to exercise executive authority as delegated by the County Executive Committee of the County of Government of Kitui, ensure provision of services to its residents, impose such fees, levies and charges as may be authorized by the County Government for delivery of services by the Municipality, promote constitutional values and principles and ensure the implementation and compliance with policies formulated by both the National and County Government.

World Bank Pumps 140M into Agricultural Value Chain Development in Kitui County For Financial Year 2018/19

Kitui, Wednesday 13 June, By Brian Peter

The World Bank has partnered with the Kitui County Government in a 146.5M project that will steer the convertion of subsistence farming to profitable economic ventures in the county through strengthening producer organizations and value chain development.

The project, dubbed National Agricultural and Rural Inclusive Growth Project (NARIGP), kicked off fully yesterday with it’s first sub-county leadership, technical staff and stakeholders sensitization workshop held at the ATC Hall Kitui Town. Although the project is a nation-wide endeavor, with similar projects in 21 other counties in Kenya; Kitui is in it’s first phase.

Five sub-counties and 20 wards are targeted to benefit from this project, in which the County government will only contribute 6.5million from it’s coffers. These sub-counties are Kitui Central, Kitui East, Kitui Rural, Mwingi North, and Mwingi Central. The wards targeted are Ngomeni, Kyuso, Mumoni, Tharaka, Nguni, Nuu, Mui, Waita, Kisasi, Mbitini, Kwa-Vonza/Yatta,Kanyangi, Miambani, Kyangwithya, among others.

This project has a three-tier implimentation structure: national to county, then community levels. It aims at achieving community-led development through participation, inclusion, transparency, accountability, value for money, self-help, and poverty targeting.

A competent county project co-ordinating unit (cpcu) comprised of technical staff from different county departments has been set up to oversee NARIGP. Key among the projects being funded are sustainable land management (SLM) projects, rural/value chain related infrastructural projects, landscape-wide investment projects, youth, women, pwds, vulnerable persons and people living with HIV, OVC, the maginalized, poor and landless in the county.

NARGIP will use a three-point approach to achieve it’s project development objectives: a holistic and integrated landscape approach; community-driven development; and market-driven approach. It seeks to address poverty reduction, nutrition, increased production, and emergency crisis response in the community levels.

NARIGP will only work with common interest groups(CIGs) and vulnerable marginalized groups(VMG). Residents are therefore encouraged to form and register community -based groups and write proposals for innovative climate-smart farming projects so as to access the grands that range from Ksh. 50,000 for nutrition projects to Ksh. 500,000 for SLM projects. Community investment projects will recieve grants up to a maximum of Ksh. 200,000,but the groups must contribute 30% of the budget, according to Mr Peter Liru, a CPCU member of NARIGP.

NARIGP is classified as a category B project by the World Bank and is planned to run for five years. According to Bendetta Kasyoka, the official incharge of the project’s financial management, the minimal allocation per ward is $115,000(Ksh. 11.5 million).

World Bank Pumps 140M into Agricultural Value Chain Development in Kitui County For Financial Year 2018/19

Kitui, Wednesday 13 June, By Brian Peter

The World Bank has partnered with the Kitui County Government in a 146.5M project that will steer the convertion of subsistence farming to profitable economic ventures in the county through strengthening producer organizations and value chain development.

The project, dubbed National Agricultural and Rural Inclusive Growth Project (NARIGP), kicked off fully yesterday with it’s first sub-county leadership, technical staff and stakeholders sensitization workshop held at the ATC Hall Kitui Town. Although the project is a nation-wide endeavor, with similar projects in 21 other counties in Kenya; Kitui is in it’s first phase.

Five sub-counties and 20 wards are targeted to benefit from this project, in which the County government will only contribute 6.5million from it’s coffers. These sub-counties are Kitui Central, Kitui East, Kitui Rural, Mwingi North, and Mwingi Central. The wards targeted are Ngomeni, Kyuso, Mumoni, Tharaka, Nguni, Nuu, Mui, Waita, Kisasi, Mbitini, Kwa-Vonza/Yatta,Kanyangi, Miambani, Kyangwithya, among others.

This project has a three-tier implimentation structure: national to county, then community levels. It aims at achieving community-led development through participation, inclusion, transparency, accountability, value for money, self-help, and poverty targeting.

A competent county project co-ordinating unit (cpcu) comprised of technical staff from different county departments has been set up to oversee NARIGP. Key among the projects being funded are sustainable land management (SLM) projects, rural/value chain related infrastructural projects, landscape-wide investment projects, youth, women, pwds, vulnerable persons and people living with HIV, OVC, the maginalized, poor and landless in the county.

NARGIP will use a three-point approach to achieve it’s project development objectives: a holistic and integrated landscape approach; community-driven development; and market-driven approach. It seeks to address poverty reduction, nutrition, increased production, and emergency crisis response in the community levels.

NARIGP will only work with common interest groups(CIGs) and vulnerable marginalized groups(VMG). Residents are therefore encouraged to form and register community -based groups and write proposals for innovative climate-smart farming projects so as to access the grands that range from Ksh. 50,000 for nutrition projects to Ksh. 500,000 for SLM projects. Community investment projects will recieve grants up to a maximum of Ksh. 200,000,but the groups must contribute 30% of the budget, according to Mr Peter Liru, a CPCU member of NARIGP.

NARIGP is classified as a category B project by the World Bank and is planned to run for five years. According to Bendetta Kasyoka, the official incharge of the project’s financial management, the minimal allocation per ward is $115,000(Ksh. 11.5 million).

KITUI WEST LOSES KABATI POLICE STATION TO CENTRAL, AS LOCALS ACCUSE NYENZE OF LAXITY, IGNORANCE AND NEGLIGENCE.

Friday 8 June, Kitui West. By Mwendwa Joseph

Kitui West has lost a Police Division in a recent reclassification of police administration zones . The move has seen the Kabati Station (Ndolos Corner Police Station) lose both the OCPD and the OCS, as the two top officers have been transferred to Matinyani: a move seen as depriving the residents of Kitui West of the security benefits that come with close proximity to law enforcement institutions.

The Kabati Police Division head quarters, located at Ndolos Corner in the outskirts of Town Kabati, has been relocated to Matinyani town, in an ongoing move by the Interior Ministry to merge Police divisions countrywide.

The Kitui West Police Division has been merged with Kitui Central Police division, creating a single division; and the Kabati Police Station moved to Matinyani town, leaving behind only a handful of officers headed by an inspector.

Local leaders, opinion leaders, activists and residents of the vast Kitui West constituency have come out strongly to voice their displeasure and discomfort with such arrangements. They have accused the area political leadership of failing to safeguard gains achieved over the years in the area of security. Residents will now have to travel all the way to Matinyani to present their security concerns, something they would earlier have addressed within a few kilometers from their homes.

“If our MP was in touch with all stakeholders in this constituency, chances are that this would have been prevented. She would have known of such plans early enough and addressed the issue. It took great effort by us, who have been on the forefront of fostering prosperity in this region, to have the first police post in this area. We have watched Ndolos Corner grow from a little police post into a fully-fledged police station, and into a respectable police division over the years. We have also ensured that the division has had adequate resources to serve the local population. Any reversal of these gains is thus an injustice to our people,” Lamented Mr. Benedict Muasya, a resident and a vocal local opinion leader.

Several residents have accused Hon. Nyenze of undoing what her late husband had worked so hard and over years to achieve.
“I will not be surprised if Kitui West Constituency is also merged with Kitui Central in the coming days,” Grumbled Mr. Katana, a local council elder. “We seem to have elected a leader who either doesn’t know her roles to the society, or doesn’t care.”
“For decades, we fought to break free from Kitui Central and have our own institutions of power and adminstration here with us, now it looks like the next few years will be the undoing of all our achievements,” Said one local Administrator who didn’t want to be quoted to avoid conflict of interests.

The local Interior Affairs stakeholders and security councils have accused the MP of both ignorance and arrogance. Speaking on conditions of anonymity, various top stakeholders have expressed their disapointments at how Hon. Nyenze has continued to snub their attempts to reach her for consultations on such matters. They have expressed confidence that had the Mp being briefed of the merge move in good time, she could have possibly lobbied for the retention of the Kitui West Police Division and Kabati Police Station would not have been shifted to Matinyani.
This comes at a time when locals have also been accusing Hon Nyenze of snubbing invitations to their events and functions, something her husband, the late Hon. Francis Nyenze never used to do.
Hon. Edith Vethi Nyenze, a sister to the Kitui Senator Enoch Wambua Kiio, won the Kitui West by-elections with a landslide in March this year; following the unfortunate loss of her husband and the former Kitui West Mp, Hon. Francis Mwanzia Nyenze; although her critics came out to satirically lable the win as a mere ‘sympathy-vote affair’.