BendAburu Alert...... As dismayed Citizens commence an MCAs accountability initiative Bunge la Wenye Nchi, Homa Bay Chapter has called a meeting
As dismayed Citizens commence an MCAs accountability initiative
Bunge la Wenye Nchi, Homa Bay Chapter has called a meeting to inquire into the activities of the MCAs of the County of Homa Bay.
In a letter dated 22nd November 2018, the Homabay County Citizens Association popularly known as Bunge La Wenye Nchi has invited the MCAs, and Public to a session scheduled for 4th December 2018.
The call by Bunge La Wenye nchi appears in direct response to the intense interest across the county right now, driven mostly — but not completely — by concerns over the slackening administration of Governor Cyprian Awiti.
Notably, the Governor has not appeard in public for over 6 months, raising concerns. Questions are also being increasingly asked about the development record of the county government, following a damning Audit Report by the Auditor General Mr. Edward Ouko raising disturbing questions about the financial health of the county.
The Assembly has also been in the media limelight, in the past months over reported ongoing feuds between factions in the Assembly complete with fist-fights. The latest incident reportedly last week, involved acrimonious scenes, with some MCAs being arraigned in court on allegations of assaulting a colleague.
Mr. Walter Opiyo, Speaker Bunge La Wenye Nchi, who signed the invitation, said the meeting is scheduled for 04:00 P.M to 05:00 P.M. on 4th December 2018, in front of the Information Offices in Homa Bay town. While extending an invitation to the MCAs, the MCAs need not fear such sessions as they provide situations for citizens who currently feel left out to have their say in this remarkable moment of devolution at the county. #HomabayCountyAt7
“Democracy is about more than elections – lasting democratic systems require elected leaders to govern in an accountable and responsive manner.” Mr. Opiyo added.
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Timely Citizen Intervention
Asked who benefits from such a process? Mr. Opiyo was categorical, its a win-win for the citizens and the elected officials. And that it might seem like a constitutionally protected expression of the right to assemble, petition and speak, and to a degree, it is.
A desirable move, as citizens up their game in how they hold the elected officials accountable, and not wait for five years to decide at the ballot box – Peter Ouma Muga
He added, “the session is a timely Citizen engagement, and is part of the process elected officials develop relationships with citizens to promote civic involvement, increase public awareness and respond to constituent needs.” He cited it as a critical part of a representative’s responsibility to citizens to engage and address deeply felt needs.
While some of the MCAs have confirmed attendance, others were non-committal about their attendance. Mr. Phelemon Okombo, MCA Kagan Ward in a spectacularly tone deaf response, upon receipt of the invitation scoffed at the initiative, and responded with an SMS “ hehehehehehe inquiry to what?”
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Such an attitude added Mr. Opiyo, its unfortunate and further expresses the urgency of such sessions which are open to the public, and foster a positive environment for all citizens to share their questions and concerns. Thus holding these elected representatives directly accountable to take action and respond to their constituents’ needs.
In turn, elected officials gain a better understanding of citizens’ priorities and are allowed the opportunity to explain their own efforts, the impact of their past work and their plans for future improvements within their jurisdiction.
I think this is a welcome move, because ultimately, as a country, and Homa Bay County in particular, we should expect more of our elected officials and how responsive they are to our concerns. A desirable move, as citizen up their game in how they hold the elected officials accountable, and not wait for five years to decide at the ballot box.