Kenya: Chaos as MCAs, Goons Storm City Hall to Evict Finance Chief

20 January 2020

Chaos and drama rocked City Hall on Monday as some members of county assembly, backed by goons, stormed Finance Executive Pauline Kahiga's office to evict her for allegedly frustrating Nairobi residents.

The drama started minutes before 11am, the two groups insisting Ms Kahiga should keep to her lands docket.

The ward representatives, however, did not find the former acting County Secretary in office as she had left before their arrival.

The media was barred from the centre of the drama , with the entrance to the office on the first floor blocked.

The MCAs later installed Trade Executive Allan Igambi in place of Ms Kahiga, who later recorded a statement on the events at the nearby KICC Police Station.

MONEY

At the centre of the melee is Sh1.4 billion the National Treasury released early in January for settling pending bills.

Minority Whip Peter Imwatok claimed the Finance executive's woes started when she allegedly refused to pay lawyers and other suppliers whose bills were not in the list.

Instructions from Treasury were for preference to be given to the youth, women, people living with disabilities and small scale traders who did business with City Hall.

Mr Imwatok said Ms Kahiga's firm stand against payments to lawyers without proper documentation made her fall out with Governor Mike Sonko.

The Makongeni MCA further accused Mr Sonko of contempt of court for gazetting Mr Igambi's appointment through acting County Secretary Leboo Morintat, having been barred from office over loss of Sh357 million.

TWO DOCKETS

Imara Daima MCA Kennedy Obuya, one of the more than 10 MCAs who stormed Ms Kahiga's office, defended their actions, accusing the Finance CEC of being in office illegally.

"She has not been appointed to work there and has another docket. How can she hold two dockets?

"We cannot sit back and yet our job is oversight. If it requires citizen arrest, we will do that. She is working hard to frustrate Nairobians," added Mr Obuya.

COUNTY'S RESPONSE

Reached for comment, Director of Governor's Press Service Elkana Jacob said Mr Igambi should be in the office as he was gazetted to the position early last December before Governor Sonko was arrested by EACC detectives and subsequently barred from office.

"She has been acting in the department. If she has her own differences with the MCAs, let her solve them. As the Executive, we are firm and working," said Mr Jacob.

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