Kenya: Odinga Urges Taita Taveta Leaders to Embrace Dialogue Before Dissolving the County

Nairobi — ODM leader Raila Odinga says dissolving Taita-Taveta county should be the last option, and has urged Governor Granton Samboja and county assembly members to give dialogue a chance.

The county' executive and MCA's are embroiled in a tussle over the 2019/20 budget.

"I want to appeal with the MCAs from Taita-Taveta to agree to talks mediated by the Senate towards resolving the impasse. However, if that does not fails then we have agreed to resign the fate of the county to the people," he said Wednesday at a meeting with a delegation from the county.

Samboja is already collecting signatures in support of the county dissolution bid.

"We have said let this serve as an example to the leaders in other counties such Homa Bay, Kisumu, Nairobi, Mombasa we are seeing this very same trend. We have to nib this bad habit in the bud," said the opposition leader.

The former Premier accused members of the county assemblies of trying to take over the mandate of the executive by insisting on abrogating itself the role of execution of projects in their wards.

Odinga cited the 2017 Court of Appeal ruling that kicked out lawmakers from any involvement in the management of the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) saying they have established that the control powers the legislators awarded themselves on CDF are a reserve of the Executive, and thus unconstitutional.

"The idea of blackmail will not help particularly when it comes to the process of budgeting, where you will find that the legislature is trying to abuse their role of oversight and take over the role of budgeting," he said.

Governor Samboja, announced his plans to dissolve the county after declining to sign Sh 5.6 billion budget amended by the County Assembly.

"As much as there is a push for dialogue, you can only push for the dialogue when both parties are sincere with each other not another party which is hiding other cards under the table," Samboja said.

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