The Teachers Service Commission (TSC) has extended Nancy Macharia’s term as secretary by five years, a move that has now attracted opposition in court by an activist group.
Midrift Human Rights Network has asked Nakuru High Court judge Monica Mbaru to declare Ms Macharia’s reappointment null and void, arguing that the position must be filled through a competitive process.
The lobby says that TSC has not shown any evidence that it advertised and competitively filled the position of secretary.
Ms Macharia’s term was to end on Tuesday, but TSC has now opted to give her another five years in office.
The TSC and Attorney-General Kihara Kariuki, the two respondents, will be expected to file responses by next Monday when Justice Monica Mbaru hears Midrift’s application to suspend Ms Macharia’s reappointment.
“The TSC failed and/or refused to open the process of appointment of the Secretary to the Commission to competition in contravention of Article 232(g)(1) of the Constitution and section 16(1) of the TSC Act. Ms Macharia’s reappointment is shrouded in mystery and opaqueness contrary to constitutionally enshrined principles of open and transparent governance in the public service.”
“I verily believe that it is imperative that the filling of the position of secretary be undertaken in accordance with constitutionally enshrined values and principles of the public service especially Article 232(g)(1) of the Constitution,” Midrift secretary-general Joseph Omondi says in court papers.
Midrift has asked Justice Mbaru to halt Ms Macharia’s reappointment, until the court case is determined.
The Law Society of Kenya (LSK) yesterday wrote to Mr Kariuki, warning of law violations in the appointment without a competitive process as per the TSC Act.
Ms Macharia was appointed secretary for a five-year term in 2015, and was expected to leave office on Tuesday.
“The information we have is that there are plans to renew her five-year contract for a further five years without subjecting the position to a competitive recruitment process,” LSK President Nelson Havi said in a letter to the AG.