Team wants court directive on city governor job lifted

Wednesday, January 20th, 2021 00:00 |
Nairobi Deputy Governor Anne Kananu Mwenda.

A committee tasked with installing Anne Kananu Mwenda as the new Nairobi governor was yesterday considering rushing to court to have the orders barring her from ascending to the seat lifted.

Sources within the committee say plans to install Kananu as governor had been finalised and all that remains is for the court to lift the orders obtained by the Law Society of Kenya (LSK) on Monday stopping her swearing in as the county boss.   

The exercise, the source intimated, has the blessings of powerful forces within the ruling Jubilee Party.

“We are ready (for the swearing in), the only problem is the court order.

We may rush to court tomorrow to have it lifted so that we can move forward,” said the source who sought anonymity for fear of appearing to influence the courts.

“Top officials in Jubilee are behind the idea of Nairobi having a new leadership that will be free from shenanigans witnessed in the past,” he added.

Instruments of power

Speaking while receiving the instruments of power from the hitherto acting governor, Benson Mutura who is the Speaker of the County Assembly, Kananu said the committee, even though yet to be gazzetted, was working on the process of swearing her in as the new governor.

The committee, chaired by the county secretary, is established under the Office of Governor Act, 2019. 

Other members of the committee include the chief officers for Finance, Culture and Social Services and County Public Service, clerk of the county Assembly, a representative of the National Intelligence Service at the county level, a representative from National Police Service (NPS) at the county level, county commissioner and a representative from the Judiciary at the county level.

 On Monday, the High Court temporarily stopped Kananu’s swearing-in pending the hearing of the petition filed by LSK and Kenya Human Rights Commission (KHRC).

The court has directed that the matter be forwarded to the acting Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu who is expected to assign the case to a bench of an un-even a number of at least three judges.

“Pending further orders of a multi bench and with the view of maintaining the prevailing status quo, a temporary injunction is hereby issued restraining the respondents, their agents and or servants from swearing-in as Governor of Nairobi County pending the hearing of the application,” reads the court order.

Despite Kananu battling with the courts, another hurdle has emerged with ODM demanding that one of their members be appointed deputy governor since the party had actively participated in kicking Sonko out.

It emerged that there are jitters within  the outfit over reports that Jubilee might go against a gentleman’s agreement and name the deputy governor. “We should be given our share as well.

We have actively helped the jubilee to pass their agendas. It’s now their time to extend the olive hand and give us the position of deputy governor,” said a City ward rep from ODM.

Former Kasarani MP Elizabeth Ongoro, ODM women league chair Beth Siengo and party secretary-general Edwin Sifuna are among the big names touted for the post.

But the jubilee party is said to be fronting former Dagoretti  South MP Dennis Waweru to deputise Kananu.

President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga are said to have struck a deal to create a handshake government in Nairobi after the fall of ex-county boss Mike Sonko.

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