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Changed fortunes of six political players who have recently fallen out of favour

That Nairobi Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko would once be summoned to the Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission offices to answer to corruption-related allegations amid fumes of teargas is a scene many might not have imagined some two years ago.

He is not alone.

Several other politicians have fallen out of political favour and on tough times since dining with President Uhuru Kenyatta a few years back.

1. Mike Sonko – He is the most prominent of them all. Sonko is among the most vocal supporter of President Kenyatta. This is partly why he was handed the Jubilee Party ticket nomination to vie for the capital’s gubernatorial seat against all odds. He has defended the president with gusto and was perceived to be an insider. But alas! He seems to be choking not only under tear gas fumes, but also several corruption allegations. Recently, President Kenyatta warned him not to discuss politics at his public function or else he would ‘grab the microphone’.

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko arrives at the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) headquarters in Nairobi on November 5, 2019. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE
Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko arrives at the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) headquarters in Nairobi on November 5, 2019. PHOTO | JEFF ANGOTE

2. Ferdinand Waititu – He supposedly was ‘Uhuru damu’ and was once fond of defending the presidency even on short notice. But things took an abrupt turn when he disappeared from the limelight after summons were issued by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission. He has since been forced to spend the better part of the last six months battling economic crimes and was even forced to temporarily step aside from his role as governor of Kiambu.

Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Ndungu Waititu at Milimani Law Court on July 29, 2019. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO
Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Ndungu Waititu at Milimani Law Court on July 29, 2019. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO

3. Beatrice Elachi – In the prime of his support for President Kenyatta, Elachi led a ‘UhuRuto Women Brigade’. This team comprising top women politicians would don military fatigues and traverse the country campaigning for the president while also showing disdain for the opposition. Fast forward to the present time and Elachi, now serving as Nairobi County Assembly Speaker, spends more time in court than she actually does in the Chambers. She has twice fought off an impeachment attempt and has to at times been armed with paper spray to fight off her political enemies.

Nairobi Speaker Beatrice Elachi (centre) in a charged mood while surrounded by her supporters moments after she dissolved the assembly at City Hall on October 10, 2019. PHOTO | KANYIRI WAHITO
Nairobi Speaker Beatrice Elachi (centre) in a charged mood while surrounded by her supporters moments after she dissolved the assembly at City Hall on October 10, 2019. PHOTO | KANYIRI WAHITO

4. Moses Kuria – He not only represents President Kenyatta’s constituency but is also his staunch supporter. His choice of words while in defence of President Kenyatta’s government and loathe for critics and opposition has seen him cause a public stir and even brush shoulders with the law. Things appear to have changed as he was recently also teargassed when attempting to bail out Starehe MP Charles Njagua aka Jaguar from a Nairobi police station. This prompted him to predict a ‘revolution’ against the Jubilee regime.

Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria at the Milimani Law Court in Nairobi on February 12, 2019 during the hearing of an incitement case against him. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO
Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria at the Milimani Law Court in Nairobi on February 12, 2019 during the hearing of an incitement case against him. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO

5. Ndindi Nyoro – Gained fame for bashing opposition leader Raila Odinga and once even urged advice President Kenyatta to temporarily suspend the constitution and let the army rule in the event Chief Justice David Maraga ruled a presidential petition against him. But things turned when the State came for him amid accusations of creating a disturbance. He had to temporarily seek refuge at a TV station before he was eventually nabbed in Murang’a amid fumes of – you guessed it right – teargas smoke.

Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro (right) argues with Nominated MP Maina Kamanda at Gitui Catholic Church in Kiharu on September 9, 2019. PHOTO | NDUNGU GACHANE
Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro (right) argues with Nominated MP Maina Kamanda at Gitui Catholic Church in Kiharu on September 9, 2019. PHOTO | NDUNGU GACHANE

6. Dennis Itumbi – A government employee once based at State House. Itumbi once spent time justifying the arrest and deportation of outspoken politician Miguna Miguna on his social media pages. Only for him to be dramatically get arrested within the city and be whisked away by the very same plainclothes policemen and Subaru vehicles, Miguna style. There have also been reports that he is no longer welcome at State House. He has since endeared himself to Deputy President William Ruto, whose praise he sings at every available opportunity.

Dennis Itumbi in a Nairobi court on July 22, 2019 where he was charged with three counts that include making a false document, programming a mobile phone and publishing a false document between 20th and 30th June 2019. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO
Dennis Itumbi in a Nairobi court on July 22, 2019 where he was charged with three counts that include making a false document, programming a mobile phone and publishing a false document between 20th and 30th June 2019. PHOTO | DENNIS ONSONGO