The indefatigable Chief Officer for the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources Mr Clement Munyithya has won a legal battle against the employer for illegal suspension.
Mr. Munyithya moved to court in October 2020 challenging a decision by the then County Secretary Mr. Chepchieng transferred him to a non-existent department in the Office of the Governor.
In the petition lodged at the Employment and Labour Relations Court in Nairobi, he had also argued that the County Secretary has no powers in law to transfer a Chief Officer. In what appeared like a retaliation the then Governor ordered for stoppage of his salary and withdrawal of official transport and other perks.
What followed was a bruising court battle which saw former governor Charity Ngilu, Mr Chepchieng and Everlyne Kasyoka(Acting chief officer in the ministry) cited for contempt of court for ignoring court orders. The trio are facing a jail sentence and /or hefty court fines.
It is against this backdrop that the court seating on 21st December, 2022 ordered for his immediate reinstatement and release of salary arrears illegally held without any conditions.
In the court papers seen by Kitui Press, the parties were ordered to appear before the judge on 20th January 2023 for further directions.
Mr. Munyithya is credited for fighting charcoal and sand cartels during his time in the ministry.
Indeed the social media and the mainstream media were awash with daily arrests and arraignment in court of the cartels.
This not only helped in growing its own source revenue for the county but also in compating deforestation & desertification, conservation of water tables along the river beds and riparian areas and fighting the effects of global warming and climate change.
In the same year, the ministry won Netfund Green Innovations Award Phase IV Runners Up for environment conservation and developing climate change resilience programs in the county.
Under his stewardship the ministry adopted and implemented the World Bank funded Financing for Locally Led Climate Action(FLLOCA) program which has seen the county qualify for a grant of Kshs 120million in the current financial year for climate change and resilience programs.
The Media reached out to Mr. Munyithya who had this to say, “cartels and forces of darkness had a hand in my jettison from the ministry. The powerful cartels continue to visit havoc on our environment with reckless abandon.
The sight of commercial vehicles carting away charcoal and sand in broad daylight is sickening. We are sacrificing our future at the altar of commercial interests.
For my case, I can confirm that the wheels of justice grind exceedingly slow but they grind exceedingly fine. Darkness will never triumph over light no matter how long it takes, viva! ”