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Mike Sonko allays fears of vacuum at City Hall after court order

Thursday December 12 2019
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Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko arraigned at Milimani Law Courts on December 11, 2019 following his bail application. PHOTO | KANYIRI WAHITO | NATION MEDIA GROUP

By COLLINS OMULO

'Crisis? What crisis?' Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko is putting on a defiant face, insisting he is still in charge of operations at City Hall despite being barred from his office.

Sonko maintained there is no leadership vacuum at the county government even as reports emerged that all county accounts had been frozen.

Through his director of communications Elkana Jacob, he sought to allay fears of a crisis, saying he was still in charge and there are other office holders, including the acting county secretary, CECs and chief officers.

“Why are you guys writing about a crisis at City Hall? There is one thing you journalists do not understand; that this is pure politics. The magistrate only said he was pronouncing himself on the corruption issue and not on the governor stepping aside,” he said.

Sonko’s lawyer George Kithi echoed the view, saying the county boss was only barred from his City Hall office but not from exercising duties coming with his position as the governor, as he had not been removed from the position.

CRIME SCENE

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Mr Kithi noted that the governor can even make appointments since such a function only requires a gazette notice to effect.

However, he said the county boss cannot execute duties that require him to be in his office, such as chairing an executive committee meeting, receiving delegations, or signing bills as the office is still considered a crime scene and he might interfere with evidence or witnesses.

Mr Kithi said Sonko has to seek permission from the court to access his office and be accompanied by an investigating officer.

Sonko was arrested on Friday last week and on Monday, together with 12 others, he was charged with several counts of corruption, before being released on Wednesday on a Sh15 million cash bail.

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