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Court dashes Sonko's hopes, clears Kananu for city top job

NAIROBI
By Paul Ogemba | October 22nd 2021

Former Nairobi governor Mike Sonko at a Kiambu court. [Geporge Njunge,Standard]

Nairobi deputy governor Anne Kananu is set to become the new county boss after the Court of Appeal cleared the last hurdle on her way.

Appellate Judges Wanjiru Karanja, Jamila Mohamed and Jessie Lessit dismissed an application by former governor Mike Sonko that had stopped Kananu from being sworn in.

If sworn in, Kananu will become the first female governor of the capital.

The judges’ decision also ended Sonko’s slim hopes of being reinstated after he was impeached by the County Assembly and the Senate in December last year.

“We find that the swearing-in of the deputy governor as the substantive governor of Nairobi has no nexus with Sonko’s appeal against his impeachment. We therefore find that his application to stop the swearing-in has no merit and we hereby dismiss it,” ruled the judges.

The judges found that Sonko’s appeal was against the High Court decision which dismissed his application challenging his impeachment and had nothing to do with Kananu being sworn in.

They said that although Kananu’s swearing-in would effectively end Sonko’s chances of getting back his office, the issue of her taking over as substantive governor was not one of the disputes before the High Court to warrant their intervention.

They said Sonko was still free to pursue his appeal against the impeachment without interfering with Kananu’s swearing-in to take up the county’s leadership and that the court still has powers to compensate him should it find the impeachment was illegal.

Sonko nominated Kananu as his deputy in January 2020 and forwarded her name to the County Assembly for vetting. A Nairobi resident challenged the nomination in court, which kept Kananu waiting until December last year.

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