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Wednesday, August 4, 2021

Mandera governor Roba summoned to court for contempt

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Employment and Labour Relations judge Monica Mbaru has ordered Mandera Governor Ali Roba and two top county officials to appear in court in person on Thursday to show cause why they should not be cited for contempt.

The judge gave the order compelling the governor, county secretary Abdinur Maalim Hussein and the chairperson of the County Public Service Board Ethila Mohamud to appear for disobeying orders given on January 25.

In January, Justice Onesmus Makau ordered them to either reinstate or pay four county officers the governor had sacked.

The order directed the governor to properly compute the outstanding salary payable to each of the four former employees who sued the county for wrongful dismissal and pay them within 30 days.

Abdiaziz Sheikh Maad who was the Trade and Industrialisation executive, his Agriculture counterpart Johora Abdi, Shamsa Mohammed (Gender and Social Services) and Health chief officer Hassan Mohamed Ahmed sued Roba and three officials for wrongful dismissal.

However, the respondents failed to comply with the directive, forcing the petitioners to file another case before Justice Mbaru.

“The application shall be placed before the presiding judge herein, Hon Justice Onesmus Makau on March 18, 21,” Mbaru said in the order.

Roba had dismissed the officers in mid-February 2019 arguing that they failed to advance the interests of the county government.

The four were allegedly denied access to their offices and any audience with the governor.

They subsequently sued him, the county government and the County Public Service Board accusing them of violating the Constitution and the County Governments Act.

In his orders, Justice Makau ruled that Roba should either reinstate the four or pay them gratuity earned up to the date of their dismissal.

“I have found that the respondents have not paid the petitioners all their salaries for the unexpired term of the respective contracts of service,” reads the ruling delivered on January 25.

“I have further found that the judgment dated April 29, 2020 did not give the respondents the option of withholding or investing the petitioners’ gratuity until they clear with the country government.”

The judge directed the respondents to promptly compute the outstanding salary payable to each petitioner.

In addition, the governor and the County Public Service Board were directed to pay the petitioners within 30 days of the ruling.

“I give the respondents the liberty to compute and pay the petitioners the gratuity earned up to the date of dismissal plus their salary for the remaining period of their contract term as an alternative to the judicial review orders granted,” the judge said.

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