18 August 2017

Kenya: Sonko Wants Kidero to Enjoin His Men in Handover Team

Nairobi governor-elect Mike Sonko has insisted on having a parallel transition team to work with the Assumption of the Office of Governor Committee to manage the handover from outgoing Governor Evans Kidero.

In a letter to Dr Kidero, Mr Sonko gave the outgoing governor until August 15, 2017 to forward the names of his team, failure to which he would seek court intervention. The deadline has since lapsed.

Mr Sonko, through his lawyer Harrison Kinyanjui, says that the Assumption of Office of the Governor Committee is not enough and that Dr Kidero should name three individuals to work with three appointed by him.

This has been met with resistance from Dr Kidero's team who say they will not appoint another one but will instead work with the existing committee formed a month ago to oversee handover.

PROPER DOCUMENTATION

Speaking to Nation, Mr Kinyanjui said that the transition team they want will oversee the proper documentation of liabilities and debts left by the outgoing county government.

In the Kenya Gazette notice that established the committees across the country, Devolution Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri had listed the documenting of a county's assets, loans and unpaid bills as among the roles of the Assumption of Office Committee.

"We need an independent committee that is not headed by the Ministry of Devolution to look into the nitty gritty of the transition especially on liabilities and assets," said Mr Kinyanjui.

He added that the new team will also give a report on how money has been spent since elections ended as revenue is still being collected by the county.

POST-ELECTION TRANSACTION

Mr Kinyanjui said that the assumption committee was not mandated to check on transactions that happened after August 8, 2017 hence the fear of queries by the Auditor General.

On the other hand outgoing Nairobi Deputy Governor Jonathan Mueke has denied that there is no committee in place.

Mr Mueke said that the transition committee that Mr Sonko wants is unconstitutional and that he (Sonko) is not conversant with the law.

The former deputy governor said that he did not understand why they should be compelled to go court over a non-constitutional committee.

Nairobi Chief of staff George Wainaina, who is heading the assumption committee has rubbished claims that they need another committee.

KIDERO'S TEAM

Mr Wainaina said that he is leading Dr Kidero's team while lawyer Lydia Kwamboka is leading the Sonko team and that they have started meetings to ensure a smooth transition.

"What will they be seeking court redress for? A team was formed that is handling the transition and I am the one leading the Dr Kidero team. We met on Monday," said Mr Wainaina.

Mr Wainaina, who is also eyeing the county Speaker's seat, said that he was not aware that they will need another team to be formed since they have been addressing the assumption of office progress and also transition.

SONKO'S TEAM

Sonko's team comprises of Larry Wambua, Lydia Kwamboka, Alphonse Mutinda, Philip Kaingu, Onchari Oyieyo, Martin Mbichire and Ben Mulwa.

Mr Wainaina said that Dr Kidero's team comprised all chief officers, county attorney Gad Owonda and head of security Francis Munyambu as per the gazette notice.

"I do not know why he (Mr Sonko) had such a large team (while) I was the only one representing the governor [on behalf of] the chief officers," said Mr Wainaina.

He said that no team is needed to oversee the handing over by county executive members since once the new team comes in they can hand over.

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