Impeachment: Sonko not yet out of the woods
Embattled Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko might not be out of the woods yet as far as his ouster is concerned as Nairobi MCAs are divided on whether to heed President Uhuru Kenyatta’s call to drop the impeachment plan.
The ward representatives have sent mixed signals ahead of the tabling of the censure motion on Tuesday.
In a meeting at State House on Saturday, the MCAs were implored upon by President Uhuru Kenyatta to act in the best interest of Nairobi residents by shelving plans to impeach Governor Sonko.
However, the mover of the motion and Minority Whip Peter Imwatok insists he will still proceed with the impeachment motion and table it on Tuesday.
Mr Imwatok, who was among MCAs who did not attend the State House meeting, said he is determined to continue his fight against graft and therefore would not let political interference sway him.
“I will not change my mind and drop the impeachment motion against the Governor. The motion is a private one and it shall be coming on the floor of the House on Tuesday,” said Mr Imwatok.
“My motion is about consciousness and the ideals that are the timers creed of our time on the fight against corruption,” he added.
Mr Imwatok’s sentiments were supported by Embakasi MCA Michael Ogada, who said he will second the motion.
He faulted the President for interfering with the voting pattern.
“I’m not going to toe the line or get armtwisted. In fact, I will be the one seconding the motion. I don’t understand why the President says he is fighting corruption but then it seems he is supporting a corrupt person,” said Mr Ogada.
Minority Leader David Mberia said he is waiting for the resolutions from the State House meeting, as he was not present,
“I know that the State House meeting was duly called in consultation with my party leader Raila Odinga but I am still waiting for the resolutions. We will have a meeting with my party members to discuss way forward but there is no guarantee that it will not be tabled in future,” said Mr Mberia.
Woodley MCA Mwangi Njihia said he will support the motion in the spirit of the President’s fight against corruption in the country.
“The President didn’t convince me why I should not impeach Sonko. I am therefore in support of Mr Imwatok 100 percent and I will support the motion on Tuesday, ” said the Jubilee MCA.
Other MCAs said they will give the State a chance to see how the takeover restores service delivery at the county.
“We have agreed for the time being not to impeach Mr Sonko as we had agreed with the President, who is also our party leader, to give service delivery a chance and stop the ouster for the time being,” said Mihango MCA Paul Kados.
South B MCA Waithera Chege was forthright saying she has not been for the impeachment and will not support the motion.
“I have been clear that I am in support of Sonko’s stay and I will still do so as he has helped me develop South B. Most of the projects there have been because of his networks. So I see no reason of sending him home, ” said Ms Chege.
CARRY YOUR OWN CROSS
Meanwhile, President Kenyatta made it clear that the National Government taking over key functions of City Hall is not a reprieve for the besieged governor in regards to court cases facing him, which he told him to deal with personally.
Roysambu MCA Peter Warutere said the President told Mr Sonko that he is alone in regards to the cases, advising him to face them just like he dealt with his International Criminal Court (ICC) case.
“The President told him (Sonko) there was no way out for his corrupt cases and he should deal with his own cases and let the county prosper,” said Mr Warutere.
“The message was loud and clear. The President did not offer any help to Sonko but only gave him “fatherly” advise. He was told to carry his own cross,” said nominated MCA Kabiro Mbugua.
Governor Sonko is currently facing a case over Sh357 million graft case after being arrested on December 6, 2019.
Last week on Wednesday, he suffered a blow in his bid to stop the case after the anti- corruption court at Milimani dismissed his bid.
There are more investigations at City Hall with EACC currently finalising on the Sh1 billion stadia tender scandal.
There is also probe into payments of pending bills by the county government as well as the procedure used to nominate Disaster Management Chief Officer Anne Mwenda as deputy governor, among others.