Orengo hits out at Gachagua over row with Sakaja

Written by on 4 January 2023

Siaya Governor James Orengo has accused Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua of interfering with the affairs of the County Government of Nairobi.

The outspoken politician and lawyer criticized the country’s second in command over recent remarks about plans by Nairobi Governor Johnson Sakaja to block matatus from accessing the city’s Central Business District (CBD).

He accused the DP of overstepping his mandate with his stance that the governor should shelve the plans in the interest of the local business community.

“Deputy President (Rigathi Gachagua) must respect the constitution. The leader of Nairobi city is Sakaja…The constitution establishes two levels of government which are distinct. He (Gachagua) can not dictate to Sakaja what to do,” Orengo stated adding that Sakaja is right and the DP is wrong.

Orengo spoke on Tuesday during the memorial service of Roots Party Leader George Wajackoyah’s late father Mzee Tito Jakoya in Indangalasia, Kakamega county.

Orengo said if there is a problem in the management of the city “Sakaja can only talk to the president and not his deputy”.

Last month, Gachagua cautioned Sakaja against making any decision that would adversely matatu industry.

Speaking in Nyeri on December 19, 2022, Gachagua noted that he was the one who instructed members of his community to vote for Sakaja.

He further stated that the Nairobi governor should consult him when making decisions that could negatively impact businesses.

Na nimemuambia govana wa Nairobi tutakaa chini na yeye kwa sababu sisi ndo tulimchagua. Mimi ndo niliketisha Wakikuyu pale Nairobi nikawaambia wamchague. Na nimemuita tukae chini na yeye. Mambo yoyote ambaye anaamua ambayo inaweza haribu biashara katika Nairobi kwanza tuongee tukubaliane,” Gachagua said.

The Deputy President insisted that banning matatu from operating in Nairobi CBD was something that was impossible.

Hatutaki speed mingi sana, twende pole pole. Sindio? Hio maneno ati ya kutoa matatu nini hio maneno haiwezekani. Staki tuanze kusumbua wafanyi biashara,” he said.

The remarks have elicited mixed reactions with a section of the political class questioning Gachagua’s motive.

Over the weekend, Bumula Member of Parliament Jack Wamboka threatened to sponsor an impeachment motion against Gachagua over his public utterances.

The legislator said the country’s second in command “has become a tribal chauvinist”.

“Every time Rigathi speaks you wonder whether he is the Deputy President of Kenya or Deputy President of the Kikuyu republic. In fact, at some point, I will bring a motion to impeach you, discuss your conduct and impeach you,” he said.

“He is threatening everyone left right and centre. You saw what he did with the good Governor of Nairobi County Johnson Sakaja. Threatening him ooh tulikupatia watu niliongelesha Wakikuyu (I asked Kikuyus to elect you). Sakaja was not elected by Kikuyus. Sakaja was elected by Kenyans in Nairobi,” he added.

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