Saturday, October 12, 2018
By lead Editor
The Kitui County Assembly initially inherited a very small chamber during the transition to devolved government in 2013 from the former Kitui Municipal Council, the Kitui County Assembly Speaker George Mutua Ndoto has said.
“It could barely accommodate the stature of a standard parliamentary debating chamber. It had limited sitting capacity for the honorable members and generally severely lacked in all other aspects including a gallery for members of the public who would wish to listen to the proceedings,” Ndoto added.
This was a serious impediment to our legislative role as an assembly and so in April 2014, the County Assembly Service Board in consultation with the County Assembly Members decided it was necessary to construct a modern debating chamber,
he further said. “And an advertisement for consultancy services for a master plan for the county assembly was placed and competitively won by the Tectonics International Limited,” Ndoto announced.
He was speaking during the official opening of the Kitui County Assembly Chamber and the launch of the assembly’s five years (2017-2022) strategic plan on Friday, October 5, 2018 where the Bungoma County Senator Kenneth M. Lusaka was the chief guest at the ceremony. Ndoto said the master plan included the construction of a modern debating chamber among other issues. According to him, the tender for the chamber’s construction was in the same year awarded to the Centurion Engineers and Builders Limited for a period of twelve months beginning May 2015. “However, the construction works were severally halted through court orders for eight months.
It was further halted for a whole year during the 2016-2017 financial year due to inadequate financial allocation,” the County Assembly Speaker said. “Despite these unforeseen challenges I can gladly mention that we now have a modern debating chamber which you can all see and has been officially launched today.
This ultra-modern chamber is a magnificent fully furnished building which stands out as an authoritative masterpiece within the whole county and beyond. It forms one of the milestones which I and the members of the first county assembly undertook with all vigour to make this a reality On behalf of all the former and present MCAs we are proud to be associated with it,” he added. The building is fully equipped with a debating chamber, public gallery, the speaker’s gallery, the press booth, the VIP/ press gallery, the hansard room, equipment room, toilet blocks, sergeant at arms office, media office, three phase power, CCTV cameras among many other excellent and empowering features, he also said.
These shall enable us to definitely take debate to the next level, he added. “I wish also to in a very special way thank the Governor of Kitui County, Her Excellency Charity Kaluki Ngilu for unveiling the 2017-2022 County Assembly Strategic Plan. This plan will go a long way in facilitating and ensuring holistic growth of the county through appropriate legislation, effective representation and objective oversight,” Ndoto said. “Further it is envisaged that the assembly shall become “A model county assembly in Kenya,” he further said. As we open this debating chamber, this occasion provides us also with an opportunity to reflect on some of the key achievements and challenges of the second Kitui County Assembly one year down the line. It is my pleasure to note that this House has made commendable advances in its legislative role for the county, he noted.
Allow me to recap the same for the purpose of bringing our esteemed visitors up to speed with our work, he added. Ndoto said that since September 7, 2017, the assembly has been able to pass and forward the Kitui County Emergency Fund Bill 2018, the Kitui County Supplementary Appropriations Bill (Number 3) 2018 and the Kitui County Appropriations Bill (Number 4) 2018 to the governor for assent. “We have been able to pass the Public Finance Management act among many