The Employment and Labour Relations Court has ruled that the dismissal of former Youth and Gender Affairs Principal Secretary Lillian Omollo was unconstitutional.
Consequently, Justice Stephen Radido has ordered the government to pay Ms Omollo Ksh1, yes you read it right one shilling, for breach of her rights.
“The petitioner was not subjected to due process, nor was she given reasons for the removal from office under the hand of the President. She was ingeniously notified that her tenure had ended because a replacement had been appointed,” Justice Radido ruled.
In the ruling, the judge noted that civil servants have a legitimate expectation that being public officers, due process as envisaged under Article 236 of the Constitution would be observed in the process of their removal from the government payroll.
Explaining why he awarded Ms Omollo a mere one shilling, the Judge pointed out that the former PS, who is charged with graft, was found to have unexplained wealth, hence the amount was adequate compensation for the violation of her rights.
Ms Omollo was sacked by President Uhuru Kenyatta in July 2018 after she was charged over the alleged loss of Ksh9 billion at National Youth Service (NYS).
In a mini reshuffle that affected the Cabinet, Chief Administrative Secretaries and Permanent Secretaries, the President appointed Francis Otieno Owino as Ms Omollo’s replacement.
Aggrieved, Ms Omollo sued the government through the Cabinet Secretary for Ministry of Public Service and Gender arguing that she was still presumed innocent and was entitled to half-pay, as the corruption case proceeds before a magistrate.
In April this year, High Court Judge Mumbi Ngugi ruled that Ksh33 million held in Ms Omollo and her three daughters bank accounts and entities run by her husband were proceeds of crime and therefore liable for forfeiture to the state.
The ex-PS has already filed an appeal against the ruling.