Employment and Labour Relation Court has temporarily suspended the swearing and assumption of office of the Hustler Fund Oversight Board members.
In a ruling delivered by Justice Monica Mbaru, appointees of the board are now temporarily barred from taking oath of office or conducting any business until the application stopping the swearing in is heard and determined.
The court ordered the Attorney General Justin Muturi to file a response regarding the objections raised by the petitioners within seven days and serve the petitioners before the matter comes up for mention on 20th February 2023.
In the petition filed by Prof. Fred Ogolla the Director of Operation Linda Ugatuzi, Ogolla argued that President William Ruto and the first respondent did not adhere to the constitution parameter when he initiated the funding neither did the appointment follow the fair and competitive process as required under the Public Service Commission Act.
“The formation of the board is outrageous, it did not follow the procedure, neither are Kenyans aware if the fintech behind hustler funds, the process of appointing the board members conducted within the parameters of laws,” Ogolla said.
Ogolla further argued that the process was not open since no advertisement was conducted nor were the appointees subjected to a competitive vetting process.
He said that the handpicking of the appointees denied many people the chance, people who could have turned out to be the most competent if rigorous interviews were conducted.
” We all know the process of recruitment in the law, transparency is the key, for this no advertisement was conducted, no public participation, all we know is that there is a list of people hand-picked to act as board members of the oversight board,” he added.
Prof. Ogolla also asked Kenyans to be reluctant in repaying funds since it was not founded on any legal framework nor appropriated by the parliament.
He also called on parliament to question the source of hefty sum of Ksh. 25 billion spent before legal framework was constituted.
“I call on the parliament to also make a wise observation and question the source of Ksh. 25 billion that Kenya Kwanza administration has spent without constitution of legal framework and Public Service Commission on the appointment of the oversight board,” he added.
The four appointees to the hustler funds oversight board whose fate hangs in the balance are Irene Karimi, Lawrence Chelimo, Paul Ndore and Hardlyne Lusui.
By Rodgers Oduor