High Court issues warrant of arrest against Migori county Finance officer over delayed salaries

By , K24 Digital
On Tue, 22 Mar, 2022 09:53 | 2 mins read
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Migori County Chief Finance Officer Samuel Omuga is now a wanted man after High Court issued a warrant of arrest against him for defying orders to pay over 1600 county employees over Ksh106.7 million delayed salaries since 2016.

Environment and Lands Court Judge Stephen Radido has ordered Migori Police County Commander and the Sub-County Police Commander to ensure that the chief Finance officer is arrested and taken to court with immediate effect.

"The Court orders the Police County Commander, Migori and the Sub-County Police Commander, Migori, to arrest and present before this court the Chief Officer, Finance, County of Migori for further proceedings," Radido ordered.

The orders came after the Kenya County Government Workers Union filed a case saying the Migori County Government through the officer has continuously failed to execute a decree of the court issued in March 2021 to pay Ksh134.7 million salaries of members.

The Kenya County Government Workers Union-Migori branch is accusing the county administration of violating and breaching a return to work collective bargaining agreement entered on May 21, 2016, to pay them a total of Ksh135 million arrears accrued during the regime of the defunct local authorities.

"The County Government of Migori shall unconditionally abide by the conditions of the consent order whereby it was agreed that the outstanding amount of Ksh134,743,591.60 shall be paid in two financial years, i.e. Ksh67 million shall be provided in the supplementary budget thereof payable in January 2017 but before 30 June 2017 and Ksh67,743,591.60 on or before June 30 2018," agreement filed in court reads in part.

Justice Radido while issuing the arrest order concurred with the union that the County Government did not fully honour the consent terms within the two years it had committed to.

The consent was entered following a strike notice issued in 2016 by the 1600 workers over their unpaid salary arrears amounting to Ksh134.7 million.

On July 5, 2016, the Labour court adopted the consent of the parties.

However, on October 17, 2018, the County Government moved to Court to have the consent set aside but in a ruling delivered on December 10, 2019, the court dismissed the application for lack of merit.

Following the dismissal of the case, the County Government did not fully settle the consent sum but only paid Ksh28 million and the union being aggrieved by the move commenced judicial review proceedings on March 21, 2018, to enforce compliance.

On March 11, 2021, the court delivered a judgment where it issued an order compelling Migori county government to pay all the remaining workers' salary arrears.