A Deputy Governor is a public official who serves as the second in command to the Governor in a county government in Kenya. The position of DG was created by the Constitution of Kenya in 2010, which established a new system of devolved government with 47 counties.
The Deputy Governor is elected alongside the Governor on a joint ticket and serves a five-year term. The role of the Deputy Governor is to assist the Governor in the performance of his or her functions and to act as the Governor in case of the Governor’s absence, death, or incapacity.
The Deputy Governor also has specific responsibilities assigned by the Governor, such as overseeing certain departments, programs, or projects in the county government. In addition, the Deputy Governor serves as a member of the County Executive Committee and is responsible for the implementation of the county government’s policies and programs.
The Deputy Governor is accountable to the Governor and the County Assembly and may be removed from office on grounds specified in the Constitution or the County Governments Act. Overall, the DG plays a critical role in the administration and governance of a county government in Kenya.
Grounds For The Removal Of A DG in Kenya
In Kenya, the grounds for the removal of a DG are stipulated in the Constitution and the County Governments Act. According to Article 181(5) of the Kenyan Constitution, a Deputy Governor may be removed from office on the following grounds:
- Gross violation of the Constitution or any other law
- Physical or mental incapacity to perform the functions of the office
- Gross misconduct
- Abuse of office or gross misconduct
- Corruption or economic crimes
- A court of law finding the DG guilty of an offense
- Any other ground that may be prescribed by national legislation.
The process of removing a Deputy Governor in Kenya involves a petition to the County Assembly, which must be supported by at least one-third of the members. The Assembly then investigates the allegations and may recommend to the Speaker of the Assembly that a special committee be established to investigate the allegations.
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If the committee finds that the allegations are true, it will recommend to the Assembly that the Deputy Governor be removed from office. The Speaker of the Assembly will then inform the Governor of the decision, and the DG will be removed from office.
It is important to note that the removal of a Deputy Governor must follow due process and be in accordance with the law. The Deputy Governor must be given an opportunity to be heard and to defend himself or herself against the allegations.
Process To Impeach A Deputy Governor In Kenya
The process to impeach a DG in Kenya is set out in the Constitution and the County Governments Act. The process involves the following steps:
- Notice of Motion: A notice of motion to impeach the DG must be signed by at least one-third of the Members of the County Assembly (MCAs) and presented to the Speaker of the County Assembly.
- Appointment of a Special Committee: Upon receipt of the notice of motion, the Speaker shall appoint a special committee comprising eleven members, of which at least two-thirds shall be MCAs, to investigate the allegations against the DG and report back to the County Assembly.
- Investigation: The special committee shall investigate the allegations against the Deputy Governor and provide the Deputy Governor with an opportunity to respond to the allegations.
- Report: The special committee shall prepare a report on its findings and recommendations, which shall be tabled before the County Assembly for debate.
- County Assembly Vote: The County Assembly shall debate the report and vote on whether to adopt the report or not. A vote to impeach the DG must be supported by at least two-thirds of all the MCAs.
- Speaker’s Notification: If the County Assembly votes to impeach the Deputy Governor, the Speaker shall notify the Senate Speaker of the decision within two days.
- Senate Plenary: The Senate shall convene a plenary session to hear the charges against the Deputy Governor and to make a decision on the impeachment.
- Senate Decision: The Senate may either uphold or reject the impeachment. If the Senate upholds the impeachment, the DG shall cease to hold office immediately.
It is important to note that the Deputy Governor has the right to defend themselves against the allegations at every stage of the impeachment process.
The Office Of The Deputy Governor Vacancy
A vacancy in the office of the Deputy County Governor can arise due to several reasons, including resignation, death, impeachment, or incapacitation.
If a vacancy occurs, the Governor of the county is required to nominate a new Deputy Governor within fourteen days, subject to the approval of the County Assembly.
The process of nomination and approval is outlined in the County Governments Act. The Governor must submit the name of the nominee to the Speaker of the County Assembly, who shall, within two days, convene a sitting of the County Assembly to consider the nomination.
During the sitting, the nominee shall be given an opportunity to address the County Assembly and respond to questions from the Members. The County Assembly shall then vote on the nomination, and the nominee shall be deemed to be appointed as DG if the nomination is supported by a simple majority of the Members of the County Assembly.
In the event that the County Assembly rejects the nominee, the Governor shall nominate another person within fourteen days, and the process shall be repeated until a nominee is approved.
Once the nominee is approved, the Governor shall appoint the new DG by publishing a notice in the Kenya Gazette, and the Deputy Governor shall take and subscribe to the oath of office before assuming their duties.
It is important to note that during the vacancy period, the County Executive Committee shall continue to function, and the duties and responsibilities of the DG shall be assigned to another member of the Executive Committee or as directed by the Governor.