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Sonko threatens to go to court over budget proposals

By George Kebaso
Monday, October 19th, 2020
Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko addresses congregants at Soweto Catholic Church in Kayole, Nairobi, yesterday. Photo/PD/DAVID NDOLO
In summary
    • Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has faulted the national government over the demolitions in Kibra saying State  should have set aside an alternative land to relocate the evictees  and compensation to enable them restart their interrupted lives.

George Kebaso @Morarak

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has threatened to move to court to shoot down the budget passed by the Assembly, claiming it ignored his proposals on the appropriations.

Speaking in Kayole yesterday, Sonko said the budget was fictitious as cartels fighting him had inserted clauses that saw around Sh1 billion slashed from the functions that he remained with.

The budget presented to him, he said, had a deficit as it had projected revenue collection of Sh31.6 billion, while the total expenditure was Sh37.4 billion.

“With unprecedented impunity, they purported to extinguish four departments that fall under the transferred functions through budget starvation,” he said.

He added: “This is contrary to Article 187 (2) (b) of the Constitution, which states that constitutional responsibility for the performance of the function or exercise of the power shall remain with the government to which it is assigned by the Fourth Schedule.” 

He vowed to soldier on with the struggle against impunity.

Addressing the media after attending Sunday service at Soweto Catholic Church, Sonko lamented that the latest move by the national government implied a force keen on rendering a legitimately elected county government redundant.

In the budget approved on October 8, Sonko was left with only Sh10 billion. Out of this Sh2 billion goes to the Assembly while Gen. Mohamed Badi’s newly established Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) gobbled Sh27.1 billion. 

County boss noted that the county Assembly did a splendid job by passing the budget, but later in the day ‘crooks’ influenced some Members of County Assembly to sneak in clauses that saw him lose Sh600 million meant for the education sector and a similar amount allocated for disaster management.

Curious clauses

“The problem with Kenyans is that they are afraid of speaking out. What we have gone through and witnessed has made some of us tough. I am not going to be intimidated.

I will continue speaking for the marginalised in the city of Nairobi,” the governor said.

In the memorandum to the Assembly Speaker Benson Mutura, Sonko said cartels cheekily introduced curious clauses to the budget in the last minute.

“Some senior government officials went ahead to arrogate unto themselves the responsibility of the County Executive and are the ones to blame for the budget stalemate,” Sonko noted.

He also revisited the recent demolitions in the city notably, Kibra, where the national government knocked down close to 700 households to pave way for railway construction.

He castigated the national government for failing to resettle people being evicted from government land in Ruai, Kariobangi, and other areas.

“Where is the heart you (Uhuru Kenyatta) had before you were President? You are surrounded by individuals out to hurt Kenyans.”

“We want a government that respects Kenyans. We are tired of your government,” the governor said. “We respect you, but we do not fear you. This matter must be stopped.”

He said despite the fact that the Constitution allows the government to make compulsory acquisition, it also empowers the same government to carry out such an exercise in a humane way.