Court suspends reappointment of Joe Sang' as KPC boss


The High Court has temporarily suspended the reappointment of Joe Sang’ as the acting managing director of Kenya Pipeline Company (KPC), following a case filed by Law Society of Kenya.

Mr Sang’ returned to KPC as the acting MD two weeks ago after a Nairobi court cleared him of corruption charges over the construction of the Sh1.9 billion Kisumu Oil jetty.

The court while acquitting him and his co-accused said the matter was one of those clear cases where people did a commendable job but ended up being vilified.

The appointment came soon after the board declined to renew the contract of Dr Macharia Irungu, ending his three-year tenure at the state corporation.

“That pending hearing of the application inter-partes, a conservatory order be and is hereby issued, staying and suspending the appointment of the 1st interested party, Joe Sang’ as the managing director of the 2nd respondent,” Justice James Rika of the Employment and Labour Relations Court said.

The judge said in the meantime, KPC is at liberty to appoint an acting MD from among the current pool of employees holding substantive management position at KPC.

The LSK says in the petition that Mr Sang’ does not hold any position within KPC, having resigned as the MD in 2018.

“…he was no longer part of the company for the last 5 years and cannot be appointed in an acting capacity,” the LSK says in the petition.

The lawyers’ umbrella body says the appointment of Mr Sang’ is against the constitution and the set standards that govern the recruitment of public officers in a fair competition and merit.

The LSK further says there was no advertisement for the position of MD and none has been put forth so far.

“Being a State Corporation squarely falls within the per view of a public entity and is subject to Constitutional dictates and principles as set forth by both the Constitution and the Public Service Commission, the 5th Respondent herein with regards to the recruitment and staffing of public offices,” LSK President Eric Theuri said

He said the public stands to suffer irreparably if the decision is not stopped because Mr Sang’ has already assumed the management of KPC, an entity that is charged with the mandate of constructing and maintaining a refined oil pipeline system and transporting the petroleum products from Mombasa to the hinterland.  

The case will be mentioned on March 10 for directions.

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