MPs fury after Tobiko snubs House invite

MPs have summoned Environment CS Keriako Tobiko to explain issues affecting the ministry.

The summon was issued yesterday after Tobiko snubbed an invite and instead sent PS Charles Sunkuli to represent him.

“As the head of the ministry, Tobiko ought to have come here to update members on weighty issues affecting forest management and conservation,” Environment Committee chairman kareke Mbiuki said.

Attempts by Sunkuli to convince the lawmakers to allow him stand in for his boss failed.

“I’m here to seek permission to represent the CS and to apologies on his behalf in the event the committee decides otherwise,” Sunkuli said.

The PS was flanked by the acting chief conservator Monica Kalenda and acting head of administration Alexander Lemarkoko.

Sunkuli said the CS was ready and willing to appear before the committee.

“He has prepared statements on the issues raised,” Sunkuli said. Tobiko was in Ndakaini for the commemoration of the World Water Day.

The MPs said the CS ought to have honoured their invite before going to Ndakaini.

Members present included Beatrice Kones (Bomet East), Sophia Noor (Ijara), Hilary Kosgei (Kipkelion West), Charity Chepkwony (Njoro), Charles Were (Kasipul), Ali Wario (Bura ) and Chachu Ganya (North Horr).

“We wanted the CS to explain policy issues. We did not invite the accounting officer. We need to be serious and summon him,” Wario said.

Kosgei said the committee was not in competition with the CS.

“I think the CS needs to consult. He has been jumping into planes and making roadside declarations,” Kosgei said.

The MPs also wanted Tobiko to explain the suspension of senior Kenya Forest Service officials.

“The CS should tone down and take time to learn how the ministry works,” Kosgei said.

Noor said Tobiko was ignoring a serious matter.

“You have been hearing about a vote of no confidence, but we don’t want to go there. We want to work together,” Noor said.

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