Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has reached out to majority leader Abdi Guyo and his rival faction in a bid to end the impasse at the assembly.
The two fell out over two months ago but the governor now wants to mend his relationship with the Matopeni/Spring Valley MCA, following Speaker Beatrice Elachi's chaotic return to office.
Mr Sonko said he is ready to renew his working relationship with Mr Guyo and all of the city's ward representatives but told the MCAs to separate blackmail and intimidation from their oversight work.
He further challenged Speaker Elachi to rally her troops in supporting his development agenda.
“The differences we have should not stop us from working for Nairobi residents. That is why I am forgiving him. I do not wish to isolate anyone in my development agenda,” he said during a meeting with the MCAs on Monday.
The Nairobi assembly has experienced constant wrangling, chaos and drama, with MCAs divided into two camps since Ms Elachi returned to office in September.
One faction is in support of the speaker’s comeback while the other, led by Mr Guyo, is opposed to it.
Governor Sonko, who has been in support of Speaker Elachi’s return, said it was time the assembly’s leadership put its house in order and focused on development by creating a free-for-all working environment, devoid of divisions.
He called on legislators opposed to Ms Elachi to abandon their hard stance, learn to work as a team and restore the unity that prevailed in the assembly since the March 9, 2018 handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Orange Democratic Movement leader Raila Odinga.
“We must end this drama and learn to respect each other. We must respect nominated MCAs and other elected leaders and stop intimidating them when they don't support our course."
The City Hall boss said the assembly should not be run in a manner suggesting that it belongs to a few individuals.
He also warned against unfounded punishments against those who appear to question the assembly board's decisions.
Governor Sonko challenged the new board to be transparent and use an all-inclusive leadership style that respects the rights of all the 122 MCAs.
“Let us respect one another and make everyone feel well represented in the running of assembly affairs. I also urge you to fast-track passing of the supplementary budget,” he said.
Ms Elachi said she will work towards creating a friendly working environment for all county leaders and promised to bring everyone on board.
“We have to end this fear of being victimised and getting isolated in assembly affairs just because of the decisions we make on some matters,” said Ms Elachi.
Hamza Maringo MCA Mark Ndung’u, the new board member who replaced Mr Guyo in representing the majority side, urged the governor to support MCAs in their plans to have offices.
Responding to his request, Governor Sonko promised to ensure the request is factored in the next financial year budget.
“We will ensure we get a building with offices even for nominated MCAs,” he said.