Health principal secretary Julius Korir has told the court that he is mandated to move workers at the ministry.
This comes after 26 senior Health ministry officials who were recently deployed out of their plum Afya House offices moved to challenge the decision by Mr Korir in court, citing malice and discrimination.
In his replying affidavit, the PS said he acted within his power and authority without any unreasonableness, bad faith or biasness.
In his defence, he said all the necessary offices were consulted and involved in the redeployment process.
This is after the affected officials through their lawyer, Apamo Boniface, accused him of usurping the powers of the Ministerial Human Resource Management Advisory Committee (MHRMAC) and that of Health secretary Cleopa Mailu in their transfer, which provides that the PS can perform any other Human Resource function as directed by the Cabinet Secretary, said Mr Korir in the court papers.
“If the court grants the orders sought by the applicants the same will undermine the administrative role of the principal secretaries rendering the said office dysfunctional and unable to execute its mandate.”
In an internal memo dated September 26, Mr Korir ordered the deployment of 35 top officers to different work stations in the ministry with immediate effect in a shake-up seen to have been triggered by the quest to appease donors in the wake of last October’s Sh5 billion scandal.
The top officials, who are senior medical doctors, wanted the court to quash Mr Korir’s decision, terming it unprocedural and laced with ethnic undertones designed for “execution of corruption, demotions, punishments and vendetta”.
The Employment and Labour Relations Court declined the appeal to suspend the deployment on grounds that some of the medics had already reported to their new work stations.
Justice Hellen Wasilwa assured the medics that there would be no prejudice pending hearing of the case and if she agrees with the application, “any decision however great can be revised”.
Mr Korir said they had not received any complaints from the affected officers and most officers had complied with the directive without any resistance.