February 21, 2024
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Governor Joseph Ole Lenku in a past event
Governor Joseph Ole Lenku in a past event

In a consequential development, the Governor of Kajiado County, Joseph Ole Olenku, finds himself subject to a fine of Ksh. 500,000 for a glaring non-compliance with a summons issued by the Senate Committee on Roads, Infrastructure, and Transportation. Chairing the committee, Senator Karungo Thangwa of Kiambu decreed the penalty, albeit with a suspension until Thursday, 30th November 2023, at 11 am.

“Kajiado County Governor, Joseph Ole Oleku is hereby fined Ksh. 500,000/- for failure to appear before this Committee after summons had been issued, the fine is suspended until Thursday 30th, November 2023 at 11 am.” ordered the Chairperson of Roads, Infrastructure and Transportation, Kiambu Senator, Karungo Thangwa.

The summons was originally extended to Governor Olenku in relation to a petition regarding access to title deeds for properties acquired at Jamii Bora Estate, Kisaju, Kajiado County. A pivotal meeting convened on Thursday, 4th July 2023, where the committee was apprised that Jamii Bora Charitable Trust had partially settled arrears of land rates and rent, amounting to Ksh. 17,150,000 for 700 developed plots. However, a considerable outstanding sum of Ksh. 1,050,484,990.00 remained.

During the meeting, the Committee resolved to request the County Government of Kajiado to submit the following information: The approved subdivision plan for the parcels of land; a mutation plan showing the plot allocation numbers for the 5,871 plots; the County Government of Kajiado to re-calculate the land rates and rent payable by Jamii Bora Charitable Trust and give an accurate figure; and The County Government to provide the legal basis for charging of land rates and rents to the property without reference to an official registration document for the 5,871 plots.

Moreover, the committee learned of the Trust’s application to the County Council of Ol Kajiado for the subdivision of land parcels LR. NO. KAJIADO/KISAJU/58 and LR. NO. KAJIADO/KISAJU/2995 into 5,871 plots a plan approved in 2008.

During the meeting, the committee decided to request specific information from the County Government of Kajiado, including the approved subdivision plan, a mutation plan delineating plot allocation numbers, a recalculated figure for land rates and rent owed by Jamii Bora Charitable Trust, and the legal foundation for levying charges without an official registration document for the 5,871 plots.

“The Kajiado Governor has not given the right explanation for his failure to appear before this honorable committee neither has he provided the committee with his responses as required. Therefore, according to section 19 of the Parliamentary Power and Privileges Act, I find him Ksh. 500,000/-. The fine is suspended until Thursday 30th, November 2023 at 10 am, when he is ordered to appear before this committee, failure to which he shall pay the stipulated fine, and the Inspector General will be required to arrest him and bring him before this committee.” ruled the Kiambu Senator

However, subsequent developments indicate a lack of earnest cooperation. The Committee received an inadequate submission from the County Government of Kajiado on 19th July 2023. A reminder letter sent on 26th September 2023, urging a comprehensive response from the Governor, went unanswered.

“We should give the Governor of Kajiado the last chance to appear before the committee, I am reliably informed that the Governor was in the Parliament precincts but he was taken ill and rushed to hospital for medical attention.” Said the Committee Vice person, Peris Tobiko.

At the meeting on 31st October 2023, it was revealed that the Governor had not responded to the reminder. Consequently, the Committee scheduled a meeting for 14th November 2023, to address the issues raised in the letter. Regrettably, Governor Olenku failed to appear, prompting the Committee to issue another summons for Monday, 27th November, 2023.

Despite being served a summons on 21st November 2023, the Governor did not make an appearance on the scheduled date. Vice Chairperson Peris Tobiko reported that the Governor had fallen ill and was hospitalized. However, Committee Chairperson Sen. Karungo Thangwa expressed disappointment, suggesting that the Governor’s nonchalant attitude warranted reprimand.

“Kajiado County Governor, Joseph Ole Oleku is hereby fined Ksh. 500,000/- for failure to appear before this Committee after summons had been issued, the fine is suspended until Thursday 30th, November 2023 at 11 am.” ordered the Chairperson of Roads, Infrastructure and Transportation, Kiambu Senator, Karungo Thangwa.

Senator Edwin Sifuna proposed a fine on two counts: failure to appear and failure to produce requested documents. The fine, amounting to Ksh. 500,000, was suspended until Thursday, 30th November, 2023, at 10 am, when the Governor is directed to appear before the committee. Failure to comply would result in the stipulated fine, with the Inspector General authorized to effect an arrest for appearance before the committee.

In a related development, Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja has been summoned to appear before the committee at 11 am the following day to address pertinent matters within the committee’s purview affecting Nairobi residents.

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