Parliament Approves Impeachment Process for Agriculture CS Linturi

Members of Parliament have voted to proceed with the impeachment process for Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mithika Linturi. The motion, which required support from at least one-third of the assembly’s 349 members to proceed, gained overwhelming approval with 149 MPs voting in favor.

The vote, held on Thursday, May 2, saw 188 legislators participating, with 36 opposing the motion and only three abstaining. The National Assembly is now set to appoint a select committee to delve into the accusations leveled against CS Linturi.

The composition of the select committee reflects a balanced representation from various parliamentary coalitions. The Kenya Kwanza Coalition secured 6 slots, the Azimio la Umoja Coalition 4 slots, and the Jubilee Party 1 slot. National Assembly Speaker Moses Wetangula emphasized the importance of diversity in the committee, urging parties to nominate members who reflect regional and gender considerations.

The select committee faces a tight deadline of ten days to present its findings to the Assembly, determining the veracity of the accusations against Linturi. If substantiated, the Assembly will proceed to vote on his dismissal.

Linturi’s troubles come amidst mounting pressure on him and Health CS Susan Nakhumincha to resign from their respective positions. The mover of the motion, Bumula MP Jack Wamboka, stressed the moral imperative behind the impeachment, labeling it as a matter of both governance and criminal accountability.

During the heated debate, voices both for and against the motion echoed through the chambers. Rarienda MP Atiende Omollo, a vocal proponent of the motion, underscored Linturi’s responsibility as the head of the ministry, calling for his accountability in the scandal.

However, Linturi found support from members of the Kenya Kwanza coalition, including Majority Leader Kimani Ichung’wa, who cautioned against hasty impeachment based on unverified claims. Ichung’wa urged the Assembly to prioritize thorough inquiry over expedited action, emphasizing the importance of evidence-based decision-making.

Similarly, nominated MP Sabina Chege advocated for a measured approach, emphasizing the need to identify and punish those responsible for exploiting innocent farmers. Chege’s call for decisive action resonated with many, highlighting the public’s demand for accountability in governance.

The grounds for Linturi’s impeachment, as outlined by Wamboka, revolve around gross violations of the constitution, including breaches of good governance, accountability, and criminal negligence. The allegations stem from the distribution of counterfeit fertilizer through the National Cereals and Produce Board (NCPB), tarnishing Linturi’s reputation and credibility.

As the impeachment process unfolds, all eyes are on the select committee tasked with uncovering the truth behind the accusations. With the deadline looming, the fate of CS Linturi hangs in the balance, underscoring the significance of parliamentary accountability in upholding integrity and transparency in government affairs.


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