Embattled Nairobi County Governor Mike Sonko is not your ordinary politician. He has often proved that he can do anything to remain afloat.
As a section of Members of County Assembly (MCAs) yesterday plotted to table a motion to impeach Sonko, it has now emerged that the county boss attempted to scuttle the process.
Multiple sources told the local media that the governor hatched a plot to cause a quorum hitch hence frustrate attempts by the Nairobi ward representatives to impeach him.
He reportedly hosted over 50 MCAs from the ODM and Jubilee parties for “lunch” at his Upper Hill private office.
The meeting lasted for several hours as the ward reps were only allowed to leave after it was confirmed that no censure motion had been tabled before the house.
“He was trying to make sure the assembly had no quorum for the notice of motion of impeachment to be introduced. We were only allowed to leave after House business had begun and after he confirmed no motion had been tabled against him,” a source told the Standard.
During the meeting, one of the MCA, who attended the meeting at Upper Hill, intimated to Nation that Sonko begged them not to support the motion.
“He called us some minutes to 8 am for a meeting. This was meant to frustrate the House’s quorum,” the MCA said.
According to Roysambu Ward MCA Peter Warutere, 63 MCAs had received invitation to attend the meeting.
“We (Jubilee MCAs) are at Upper Hill with the governor. The governor called for a meeting before the plenary. We are here to discuss the issue of the coming notice of motion on the impeachment of Governor Sonko,” said Warutere.
A source also intimated to the Standard that the members were promised Ksh40,000 to shelve the impeachment plan.
Sonko’s plan worked as only 10 Jubilee MCAs were reportedly present in the assembly. The county assembly needs 41 out of the 122 members to transact any business.
Earlier, a letter emerged allegedly from ODM Nairobi Branch chairman and Makadara MP George Aladwa, warning ODM MCAs not to support the impeachment motion. Aladwa claimed that the instructions were from the party leader Raila Odinga.
But the letter was dismissed by ODM Secretary General Edwin Sifuna, who stated that the party will not “interfere with the power granted directly by the people”.
Sifuna maintained that official communication on the party position on any matter is the responsibility of the Secretary General.
Secretary General @edwinsifuna has clarified that the letter allegedly authored by the Party’s Nairobi County Chairman Hon. @aladwa_george is not the official party position with regard to the matter before the County Assembly of Nairobi on Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko. pic.twitter.com/CzEYXOZLrw
— The ODM Party (@TheODMparty) February 19, 2020
The impeachment plot is spearheaded by Embakasi MCA Michael Ogada who has since confirmed that he had met the threshold required to oust the governor.
Sonko, who is out on Ksh15 million bail, was in December barred from accessing his office after he was charged with 19 counts for allegedly misappropriating Ksh357 million from county coffers.
He is also accused of irregularly awarding tenders to his close aides and forging documents leading to the loss of millions of shillings.
Nairobi has been without a Deputy Governor for over two years following the resignation of Polycarp Igathe on January 12, 2018. Igathe cited frustrations from his boss as the reason for the decision.
The crisis at City Hall was heightened after Sonko was blocked from accessing his office pending hearing and determination of the case.
Sonko’s was recently dealt a blow after the High Court suspended the vetting of his Deputy Governor nominee Anne Mwenda pending hearing and determination of a petition against the appointment.