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Sonko’s ultimatums as Governor Kidero prepares to leave

By Josphat Thiong'o | Published Wed, August 16th 2017 at 00:00, Updated August 16th 2017 at 10:10 GMT +3


Governor-elect Mike Sonko and his deputy Polycarp Igathe at a past event. Sonko wants his predecessor, Evans Kidero, to consult him ahead of next week's swearing in. [File, Standard]

Governor-elect Mike Sonko wants his predecessor, Evans Kidero, to stop further activities at City Hall that could compromise the county government’s financial position, including withdrawing funds from Central Bank of Kenya.

The incoming governor, who is set to be sworn in on Monday, has already hit the ground running - even before taking over office - and has ordered the county government to pay employees and contractors.

Sonko also declined a Sh25 million party to celebrate his inauguration and now wants Dr Kidero to stop transacting any more business involving large sums of money, fearing this could cause him to inherit a county that is in a precarious financial position.

Sonko has written to Kidero through his lawyer, Harrison Kinyanjui, terming the financial transactions illegal.

Necessary transition

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“Following the conclusion of the General Election, our client is now the governor-elect. As a result it is necessary to ensure a necessary transition of the reins of power in the city county from yourself, stem financial haemorrhage, forestall collapse of services and maintain accurate and proper records of the county government,” read the letter sent on August 14 and seen by Metropolitan.

He has also demanded that Kidero and his staff should stop moving materials from City Hall or other county offices without consulting with members of the Transition Committee, which was to be formed by yesterday.

Last Friday, staff allied to Kidero were seen carting away stuff from City Hall.

“Please liaise with us in meeting the foregoing objectives to enable us to secure the best interests of the residents of Nairobi and further note that our client has instructed us that in default of your responses by the close of business August 15, we have instructions to seek legal redress,” said the letter.

The Ministry of Devolution has asked all outgoing county administrations and incoming teams to form transition committees to oversee the transfer of power. An assumption of office committee led by Leboo ole Morintat had been set up to oversee the swearing in of governors-elect. A bill that would have prevented the current confusion surrounding the transfer of power in the counties is yet to be passed since being introduced in the Senate last year.

“All counties confirmed the date and place of swearing in by yesterday and submitted the draft gazette notices announcing the same for publication,” said Devolution Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri yesterday.

Speaking to Metropolitan for the first time since his win, Sonko said among his priorities was the hawker menace, garbage collection, business licensing, parking payment systems and repossessing all stolen property. 

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