Anne Kananu to take over as city boss after court ruling
Eric Wainaina and Alvin Mwangi
Anne Kananu is today set to be sworn-in as third governor of Nairobi county.
The development follows a Court of Appeal ruling last week that threw out a case filed by ousted Nairobi Governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko stopping her ascension to office.
People Daily has established that the Assumption of Office Committee has already been formed to oversee Kananu’s swearing in, as she joins the list of female governors in the country.
The committee is chaired by County Secretary as enshrined in the Assumption of Office of Governor Act, 2019 and comprises Chief Officers for Finance, Culture and Public Service, Assembly Clerk and representatives from the National Intelligence Service, National Police Service, Judiciary and County Commissioner.
On Friday, three appellate judges cleared the way for Kananu’s swearing in after dismissing Sonko’s case seeking to block her from assuming office on grounds that it would violate his rights.
Sonko had told the court that he was apprehensive that should Kananu become the substantive governor, an appeal he had lodged challenging his impeachment would be rendered useless.
He further said that even if he was to succeed and the court was to find that his impeachment was improper, then it would mean that he would not be able to return to his former job.
But Justices Wanjiru Karanja, Jamila Mohammed and Jessie Lesiit ruled that his application did not merit such orders.
Judges further noted that the swearing-in of Kananu was not among the grounds raised by Sonko in his appeal.
“We find that the issue of the swearing-in of the 11th Respondent was not raised in the High Court and the impugned judgment did not address or determine that issue,” the judges ruled.
Kananu becomes the sixth deputy governor to rise to the post of governor.
Other deputy governors who have replaced their bosses since the 2017 General Election include Kiambu’s James Nyoro, who was elevated in January last year after his predecessor, Ferdinand Waititu, was impeached over corruption and abuse of office.
Wajir Governor Ahmed Ali Muktar also assumed office in similar circumstances after his boss, then governor Mahmoud Abdi Mohammed was impeached by the Assembly over corruption.
Bomet Governor Hillary Barchok assumed office following the death of his then boss, Joyce Laboso in 2019.
Incumbent Nyamira Governor Amos Nyaribo was also elevated after the demise of John Nyagarama in December 2020.
Nyeri county boss Mutahi Kahiga equally rose to the position after the death of Wahome Gakuru on November 7, 2017 through a tragic road accident, months after being elected.
Kananu was in January 2020 picked by Sonko to replace former Deputy Governor Polycarp Igathe, who quit due to a strained working relationship with the impeached county boss but her nomination was challenged in court.
By the time Sonko was being impeached, the matter was still pending in court.
Justice Mumbi Ngugi barred Nairobi Ward Reps from vetting Kananu on grounds that her nomination amounts to “a direct affront to orders issued against Sonko in 2019 when he was barred from accessing office following charges of money laundering and unlawful acquisition of public property amounting to Sh357 million.
Keen to avoid a by-election in the city, the government successfully moved to have a petition by Peter Agoro against Kananu withdrawn.
Shortly after the petition was withdrawn in January, Kananu was sworn in as the deputy governor.