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Court paves way for Daniel Manduku to take over KPA top job

The High Court has lifted orders quashing Kenya Ports Authority’s decision to send on compulsory leave managing director Catherine Mturi-Wairi and appoint Daniel Manduku as her replacement.

On Tuesday, Justice Eric Ogola set aside the orders following the withdrawal of the application by the petitioner.

The petitioner’s lawyer, Mr Gunga Mwinga, said the application has been overtaken by events following the resignation of Ms Mturi-Wairi last Friday.

But the lawyer said the petition challenging the process to send the managing director on compulsory leave remains.

Justice Ogola’s ruling paves the way for Mr Manduku to take over.

The application had been filed by a Kilifi resident, Mr Emmanuel Kenga.

Mr Kenga argued that KPA board’s decision to send Ms Mturi-Wairi on leave was unconstitutional.

RESIGNATION

On Friday, Ms Mturi-Wairi wrote to the Transport Cabinet Secretary James Macharia informing him of her decision to end her 25-year career at the ports authority. She was the first woman in the organisation’s history to occupy the top seat.

According to information from KPA website, Ms Mturi Wairi joined the port as a junior accountant in 1993 and was confirmed to the post of accountant payroll administration.

Until her appointment as managing director in 2016, Ms Mturi-Wairi was the general manager in charge of finance having rose through the ranks to the helm of the organization.

Ms Mturi-Wairi’s father, Mr Jonathan Mturi, was also a managing director at the port from 1980-1984 and was in 1999 appointed KPA chairman following a shake-up at the management of East Africa’s largest port.

Justice Ogola said parties are at liberty to change the petition for hearing.

Mr Manduku had not yet reported to work on Monday despite Ms Mturi-Wairi’s resignation.

Before his appointment, Mr Manduku was the National Construction Authority’s chief executive.

Last Wednesday, the government appointed Gen (rtd) Joseph Kibwana as the new KPA chairman replacing Major (Rtd) Marsden Madoka whose term ended.

KPA principal communication officer Haji Masemo said the new boss was waiting for the outcome of two cases filed in Mombasa following Ms Wairi-Mturi’s forced exit.

The two court cases were filed at High Court and Employment and Labour Relations Court.

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