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Vote to remove seven directors deepens Nairobi Hospital tension

The Nairobi Hospital
The Nairobi Hospital. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

Nairobi Hospital's shareholders on Wednesday voted to oust seven directors despite protests from the board.

The extra-ordinary meeting (EGM) led to the removal of the directors, including board chairman John Simba and his deputy, Coutts Otolo — a former Mumias Sugar Company #ticker:MSC chief executive.

The ousted directors had earlier opposed the EGM, arguing the petition summoning it breached rules because it failed to disclose the specific agenda of the meeting and was signed by some members who had not paid their subscriptions.

Members of the Kenya Hospital Association (KHA), which owns the hospital, called the meeting that replaced the seven with nine new directors set to serve temporarily for three months.

The nine include lawyer Richard Omwela, wife of Baringo Senator Gideon Moi, Zahra Moi, architect Otieno Odongo, former MP Chris Bichage and the chief executive of CBA Bank, Kenya Jeremy Ngunze.

The EGM resolutions look set to escalate wrangles at the premier hospital, which was triggered by the suspension of now sacked CEO Gordon Odundo in December.

Dr Joseph Aluoch, a member of KHA, said that while they anticipate resistance from the ousted members, they are ready should they move to court.

“The members left us with no choice and we hope that the new directors will chart a different path. They will also have a chance to vote for a chair among themselves,” he said.

About 96 KHA members voted unanimously for the board changes, with their lawyers saying the voting was in line the Articles of Association.

According to the KHA Memorandum and Articles of Association, the quorum needed for such a meeting is just 20 of the 1,200 members.

Two thirds of those present can pass a vote.

Mr Odundo was sacked in mid-April after months of tussles with the hospital’s board.

The standoff first played out in public on December 14 last year when Mr Odundo resisted attempts to serve him with a suspension letter.

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