A storm erupted in the National Assembly on Thursday evening over how former nominated senator Halima Abdile was shortlisted by Parliamentary Service Commission to represent MPs in SRC.
Speaker Justin Muturi rejected the nomination of Abdile to the Salaries and Remuneration Commission.
Ruling on a matter raised by Funyula MP Wilberforce Oundo on whether the nominee had met the 10 years’ experience threshold required by law, Muturi blamed PSC for the mess.
“Sometimes you have to make very difficult decisions. If the person does not meet the qualifications, you are setting the person up for embarrassment because somebody is going to challenge this nominee in a court law and it is this House that is going to be made to look bad or be left with an egg on its face,” Muturi said while rejecting the nominee.
He who thwarted attempts by Eldas MP Aden Keynan – a PSC commissioner – to stand on a Point of Order, saying the commission should have initially done due diligence on Abdile to confirm if she met the requirements.
“I have always stood in defence of this institution and the members, given the information I have in the report which shows that this candidate worked in arid and semi-arid areas, then as a clerk of Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission. Does she meet the threshold?” he posed.
Muturi added: “These issues should should not have been here if the commission had also done due diligence.
In fact, in a way, I must absolve the House in dealing with this matter. The House is now dealing with issues which should not have been here. I’m the chairman of PSC and not the commission. This mistake has been brought to the House by PSC. Those in the commission know themselves and they have brought the House into this situation. It is not a light matter”.
Section 5 of the SRC Act requires commissioners to have at least 10 years’ experience.
According to the CV presented before Parliament, Abdile was born in 1988 and graduated in 2011.
“If she graduated in 2011, does she meet the requirements of 10 years’ experience required? We should not make a decision which can be challenged outside there,” said Oundo.
Committee on Finance and National Planning chairman Joseph Limo was taken to task by the Speaker to single out what in the nominee’s CV complied with the law and the SRC Act.
The committee approved the nomination of six and rejected workers nominee Nelly Peris.
Those approved are Lyn Cherop as the chair, Dalmas Otieno, Halima, John Kennedy, Margaret Sawe, Amani Yuda and Sophie Moturi.