Health Cabinet secretary Sicily Kariuki faces an epic battle to retain her post after a motion seeking to impeach her was filed at the National Assembly yesterday.
In a notice of motion filed by Mandera North Member of Parliament Bashir Abdullahi, Kariuki has been accused of abuse of office for arbitrarily suspending Kenyatta National Hospital chief executive Lily Koros. The MPs now want President Uhuru Kenyatta to dismiss Kariuki citing gross misconduct.
However, Deputy President William Ruto has made attempts to stop lawmakers from proceeding with the move especially those from the Rift valley, who and earlier indicated interest in moving the motion.
Belgut MP Nelson Koech who vowed to second the motion when it is moved next week, said already 178 members had appended their signatures in support. Kariuki faces another charge of having interfered with the recruitment process of the Kenya Medical Supplies Agency (Kemsa) chief executive.
Further, she has been accused of having used her office to deny other qualified Kenyans the chance to head Kemsa by ordering the board to re-submit another list other than an earlier one where three individuals had been short-listed.
Some lawmakers from northern Kenya also questioned why Kariuki ordered fresh interviews for the position of the Kemsa managing director. Kariuki has also been accused of misusing public funds by ordering a refurbishment of an entire office floor turning it to be her own office.
The legislators say the CS abused her office by suspending Koros following a procedural surgical incident at the Referral facility. The MPs claim the CS has no legal mandate to fire or even to direct the board to send the KNH CEO on compulsory leave.
“We are like other Kenyans concerned by what happened at KNH. The mess was a professional negligence and the person who should have taken responsibility is the doctor who wrongly conducted the surgery,” said Aldai MP, Conley Serem.