KISUMU governor Jack Ranguma suffered a setback after his executive secretary nominee Barrack Abonyo was axed by the vetting committee for failure to produce his academic certificates.
Ranguma nominated Abonyo for Water, Energy and Natural Resources two weeks ago.
On Monday, Abonyo with two nominees Joseph Omulo Okal (Treasury) and Rhoda Obadha (Environment) appeared before the committee chaired by Kisumu assembly speaker Anne Adul.
Abonyo’s nomination was rejected by the speaker after he failed to produce his undergraduate certificate from Kenyatta University.
Abonyo could only produce a clearance form from the institution as proof of obtaining his degree from the University but the speaker rejected his plea.
Adul said a clearance form could not be used as an authentic document of study.
Adul took issue with Abonyo's failure to produce an original copy of his Master's Degree.
“We have issues with Abonyo’s clearance form from the Commission of Higher Education and propose further investigation,” said Adul.
The speaker allowed Abonyo to reapply for the position and produce original certificates and other relevant documents.
Abonyo’s failure to provide the documents put Governor Ranguma on the spot as queries emerged on whether Abonyo’s documents had been verified before he was named as the executive secretary.
Some residents said Ranguma may have just rewarded Abonyo with the position after he (Abonyo) stepped down for him in the gubernatorial race.
An elder, Oruko Jakang’o, who attended the vetting wondered how Abonyo, who is said to be a professor, could not comply with the requirements of nomination.
“It is quite absurd that Abonyo who says he is a professor could fail to convince the vetting team at the expense of other nominees who are yet to obtain a PhD,” Oruko said.
However, activist Ogweya Jakambare faulted the speaker’s move saying it is unfair.
“I am not sure whether the vetting committee can refuse to interview but they can give their recommendations," said Western/Nyanza Civil Society Organisation network coordinator Betty Okero.
Ranguma had described Abonyo as a holder of a Bachelor's Degree in Zoology and PhD in Medical Physiology from East Carolina University.
“He has served as spokesman for the Kenya Global Unity, President of Kenya development Fund Corporation and chairman of Kenya relief organisation,” Ranguma asserted.
By the time of going to press yesterday, the committee members were holed up in a vetting process of the Health services nominee Elizabeth Ominde Ogaja.