Tana and Athi River Development Authority (Tarda) boss Steven Githaiga Ruimuku has been sacked after the Court found out that he lied about his age.
The Employment and Labour relations Court ordered the authority to start the process of replacing the state agency’s Managing Director (MD).
The court ruled that Githaiga altered his date of birth and name on national identification documents hence fraudulently extended tenure in office.
In a ruling delivered on Friday, Justice Stephen Radido declared that Githaiga failed the integrity test to hold the public office.
The documents were presented in court by the Union of Kenya Civil Servants to prove the illegality committed by the MD.
Githaiga was supposed to retire in 2008 at the age of 55 before the government changed the retirement age to 60, giving him five more years at the helm. He was thus supposed to retire in 2013.
He was however not satisfied with the ‘bonus’ of five years, hence decided to change his date of birth to match that on his passport, No. A1593455, acquired on February 2, 2011.
He was appointed acting MD in April 2013 pending the recruitment of a substantive office holder.
However, in a gazette notice published on June 15, 2015, the Ministry of East African Community and Regional Development Cabinet Secretary appointed him as MD for a term of three years.
On March 28, 2018, the CS renewed Githaiga’s contract for a second term prompting the union to file the case on the grounds that it was irregular, unlawful and unconstitutional.
Also, Githaiga is said to have changed his name to Steven Githaiga Ruimuku from Stephen Maina Githaiga.
The same was revealed to Parliament in 2015 by former auditor general Edward Ouko.
“Githaiga changed his date of birth from 1953 to 1958, a date he now uses on most of his official documents. Accordingly, his true age is 62 years and as such, he ought to have retired in 2008, one year before the government enhanced retirement age to 60 years,” Ouko said in 2015.
As of 2015, earned Ksh10.8 million in basic salary during the fraudulently extended tenure in office, Ouko said.
“The court is satisfied that the 4th Respondent was in breach of the values and principles of public service as well as the requirements on code of conduct and ethics by causing to be employed by the Authority, persons related to him,” reads part of the judgement delivered on Friday.
“The recommendation by the Authority in 2018 for the appointment and/or renewal of contract of Ruimuku, and the renewal of contract by the Cabinet Secretary was founded upon an obvious breach of the guiding norms and cannot be allowed to stand.”