Nairobi boss’ Cabinet seat raises eyebrows
George Kebaso @Morarak
The presence of Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS), Major-General Mohammed Badi at yesterday’s full Cabinet meeting chaired by President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House, Nairobi raised eye brows across the country.
He even took an Oath of Secrecy according to State House, which communicated Gen Badi shall in future attend all Cabinet meetings pursuant to Executive Order No. 3 of 2020.
Yesterday’s events came amid growing speculation the Nairobi City County Government could be headed for dissolution to pave way for a Nairobi Metropolis Ministry headed by a Cabinet Secretary.
A number of lawyers, who spoke to the People Daily last evening, criticised the move saying it has serious implications.
“In what context was the general attending the cabinet meeting,” wondered city lawyer Dickson Morara Omoke asked adding that the decision had serious implications including possible abuse of the law by the President.
“All the ministries we have were created by an Act of Parliament. For me what the President has done is unspeakable.
He has side-stepped the mandate of the Legislative arm of Government,” he noted.
“More specifically the Article in subsection (3)(b) gives the president power to direct and coordinate the functions of ministries and government departments. The question therefore is; is NMS a government department?” he posed.
Omoke, however, noted that the president could have exploited Article 132 4(a) gives the President power to perform any other executive function including the power to establish an office in the public service in accordance with the recommendation of the PSC.
“Remember that today’s oath was administered as a resolution of the Public Service Commission (PSC).
But the next issue is whether the decision to include the Director General of NMS in all Cabinet meetings and its committees was in writing as mandated under Article 135,” he said.
Another lawyer Ndegwa Njiru also faulted the executive for the numerous executive orders so far made while by-passing parliament.
“How can the President rule the country through executive orders, decrees and legal notices?
By side-stepping Parliament, the President is in violation of the law he swore to defend,” he stated.
Already a proposal to change how the capital is governed has caused jitters among top Nairobi politicians who are considering shifting their political base just in case a proposal to amend the Constitution succeeds.
The proposal makes the positions of governor and senator and even MCAs uncertain given recommendations in the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report to accord the capital city a special status.
Governor Mike Sonko, Senator Johnson Sakaja, former governor Evans Kidero and his deputy Jonathan Mueke are among those reportedly forced to explore new political bases.
Kidero was reported on Wednesday having mentioned to journalists that he was considering making a political comeback albeit not in Nairobi.
“I was born and brought up here in Nairobi. I went to school and lived all my life in the city but if the BBI proposal carries the day, I will consider running in Kiambu or Kajiado which are within the Nairobi Metropolitan Area or shift base to Mombasa or Kisumu Counties,” he explained.
Previously, Wiper Party leader Kalonzo Musyoka has urged Sonko to consider Machakos where Alfred Mutua may be serving his last term should the city prove untenable for him.