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Sonko speaks on claims he used county funds to send wife, daughter to US

Nairobi governor Mike Sonko has come out to defend himself against accusations made by Kitusuru MCA Alvin Palapala that he used county money to fund a foreign trip for his wife Primrose Mbuvi and daughter Saumu Mbuvi in 2018.

Primrose and her step-daughter attended the 62nd Commission on Status of Women conference in New York, the US from March 12 to 23, 2018.

According to Mr Palapala, the county Executive sponsored Saumu to the summit “yet she is neither a public official nor employee of the devolved government”. He said the county spent Sh2.4 million.

But Sonko now says that the inclusion of his daughter to the trip was approved by the Head of Public Service, Dr Joseph Kinyua, and for this reason, she was entitled to a fully funded trip by the Nairobi City County government, like any other delegate.

In addition, the governor claimed to be the one who personally catered for the transport, accommodation and related costs for both his wife and daughter.

“My attention has been drawn to unsubstantiated claims made yesterday by the Kitisuru Ward MCA, Hon. Alvin Palapala, that the Nairobi City County First Lady and my daughter Saumu Mbuvi made an irregular trip to New York in March 2018 at the expense of the taxpayers. First, I wish to clarify that her inclusion, and that of my daughter, in the said trip were sanctioned by none other than the Head of Public Service, Dr Joseph Kinyua,” Mr Sonko said.

He added: “As such, she was entitled to a fully funded trip by the Nairobi City County government, like any other delegate, to attend the 62nd Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW 2018). However, I personally catered for the transport, accommodation and related costs for both my wife and daughter. It is therefore preposterous and ignorant for the said Member of the Nairobi City County Assembly to make allegations that he cannot prove. If anything, I would like to challenge him to provide any proof of payment of per diem to either my wife or daughter.”