Nyeri governor Mutahi Kahiga reckons he made a mistake appointing Caroline Karugu as his deputy.
On Thursday, the county boss said his deputy is not involved in his administration as she is busy doing other things.
“She is not involved in my government at all. She is busy doing other things. She is just our deputy governor by name but we never see her. She never comes to work,” Kahiga said.
On her part, Karugu has previously complained that she always spent most of her time idling, drinking tea, and reading newspapers when she reported to her office, which she said has been the case for many deputy governors. The biggest assignments deputy governors are given, she said, are to attend burials or to console bereaved families.
Karugu said most governors have not been delegating to their deputies for fear that they may take the advantage to popularise themselves.
She has been saying that deputy governors and the deputy president earn hefty salaries for idling in office.
Karugu, who is the chair of the deputy governors’ forum, is now pushing for portfolios for deputy president and deputy governors.
She was earlier quoted as saying that each deputy governor earns Sh740,000 per month. This amounts to over Sh400 million per year and about Sh2 billion over five years for all deputy governors.
“A total of Sh2 billion is paid to people who do nothing for five years. Deputy governors are now doing charitable activities so that they have functions to do. A deputy president should also be a minister or Cabinet secretary,” Karugu said.
“We want a deputy governor to be in charge of a docket like Health. The money paid to one county executive committee member could be saved and this will go a long way in reducing the wage bill.”
According to the Constitution, a deputy governor should deputize the governor in executing her functions. The governor may assign the deputy governor any other responsibility or portfolio as a county executive.
Unknown to many, Karugu’s immediate previous job was at the Geothermal Development Company as an Independent Non-Executive Director, a position she was appointed to by President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2015 alongside other 87 parastatals appointees.
Secondly, worked as a Senior Investor Relations Manager at Britam where she joined in October 2013 so she was used to an actively busy schedule. At some point in her career, she also worked at Nairobi Securities Exchange as an Investor Relations and Communications Manager.
Besides, she is a Ph.D. holder with a Doctor of Business Administration Degree (Finance option) from USIU-A in collaboration with the Columbia Business School in New York.
Just recently, the two leaders have been spearheading the fight against Covid-19 on different fronts without involving each other.
Governor Kahiga secured 13,000 liters of hand sanitizer from Kibos Sugar Company and repackaged it into small containers bearing his image, for which he received backlash and criticism from his deputy.
“Jack Ma has donated PPEs and ventilators worth billions to Africa. We are forever grateful for his generosity. What baffles me more than the kind gesture, is how he chose to go about this donation with no publicity stunts, just a kind heart willing to help.
“Dear CS Mutahi Kagwe, once these donations get to you, kindly send them directly to the individual users. Please minimize the “in-between’” Karugu posted on her official Facebook page.