Sonko extends olive branch to ‘rebel leader’ in Nairobi County Assembly
Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has reached out to the Majority Leader in the Nairobi County Assembly Abdi Guyo and his rival faction in a bid to end the current impasse at the assembly.
The two have been friends but fell out over two months ago. Now the governor has extended an olive branch to the Matopeni/Spring Valley MCA following the chaotic return of Speaker Beatrice Elachi last month.
Mr Sonko said he is ready to renew his working relationship with Mr Guyo and the entire Nairobi ward representatives, but warned MCAs to separate blackmail and intimidation from their oversight work.
He challenged Speaker Elachi to rally her troops in supporting his development agenda even as they carry out their oversight role.
“The differences we have should not stop us from working for Nairobi residents and that is why I’m forgiving him. I do not wish to isolate anyone in his development agenda,” said Mr Sonko during a meeting with the MCAs on Monday.
Nairobi Assembly has experienced constant wrangles, chaos and drama with MCAs divided into two camps since Ms Elachi returned to office last month. One faction is supporting the speaker’s comeback while the other, led by Mr Guyo, has strongly opposed it.
Nonetheless, Governor Sonko – who has been in support of Speaker Elachi’s return – said it was time the assembly’s leadership put its house in order and focuses on development by creating a free-for-all working environment devoid of divisions.
He called on the county legislators opposed to Ms Elachi to abandon their hard stance and learn to work as a team and restore the unity that has prevailed at the city assembly since the Handshake.
“We must end this drama and learn to respect each other. We must respect the nominated MCAs and other elected leaders and stop intimidating them when they don’t support our course,” he said.
The City Hall boss stated that the assembly should not be run in a manner suggesting that it belongs to few individuals warning against intimidation and unfounded punishments against those who appear to be questioning decisions made by the assembly board.
He challenged the new board to operate with transparency and instill an all-inclusive leadership style that respects the rights of all the 122 MCAs.
“Let us respect one another and make everyone feel they are well represented in the running of the assembly affairs. I also urge you to fast track the passing of the supplementary budget,” said Sonko.
On her part, Ms Elachi said she will work towards creating a friendly working environment for all leaders in the county, promising to bring everyone on board.
“We have to end this fear of being victimised and getting isolated in the assembly affairs just because of the decisions we make on some matters,” said Elachi.