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Ex-NMS employee in financial distress amid salary arrears, Sakaja’s promise

Samuel Mbugua, 25, a former Nairobi Metropolitan Services (NMS) officer, is in a web of broken promises and financial distress.

His life has taken a turn for the worst as he grapples with financial woes linked to his unpaid wages stretching back seven months.

Mbugua stands as a representative of a larger group comprising 700 officers who once served under the now defunct NMS.

They all share a common grievance of unfulfilled paychecks.

Speaking to Nairobi News, Mbugua disclosed the mounting pressures he is facing to make ends meet.

“I stay in Gachie Delta. My rent is Sh7,000 per month. However, the landlady locked me and the family out (owing to rent arrears) and we were forced to sleep at a nearby petrol station.” Mbugua told Nairobi News.

The weight of a debt totaling Sh49,000 hangs heavily on his shoulders, a sum owed to his landlady.

The county government’s debt to Mbugua, amounting to Sh171,460 represents a lifeline that he clings to with unwavering hope.

Despite the challenges that have emerged since his contract was abruptly terminated, Mbugua remains resolute in his pursuit of justice and rightful compensation.

“The Governor himself promised he would absorb us to the payroll, something we are still waiting for. However, if it is not possible, let the county government pay us our salary arrears and we shall move on with our lives,” he added.

On the other hand, Wabuyabo Flavian Alex, the President of NMS Enforcement Officers, has become a beacon of hope for these officers who find themselves in the same disheartening predicament.

“I have this morning tried to intervene with one of the landlords who has locked out one of my constables from his house over rent arrears. This is because governor Sakaja and his administration have blatantly ignored to pay NMS enforcement officers their 7 months’ salary arrears after the illegal termination of their contract that has contributed to their misery and violation of their rights to decent living,” he noted.

“The officer was staying at a petrol station in Gachie. The landlady and I have signed a two-week grace period as we push Sakaja to pay the officers arrears. This is the daily plight of over 700 NMS akaris,” Alex told Nairobi News.

Early this year, Sakaja directed former NMS staff whose contracts expired to report to City Hall, and apply for permanent county posts.

The NMS came to force following a political deal between former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko and ex-President Uhuru Kenyatta, in which a number of county functions were signed off to the national government.

As a result, the former president appointed Gen Mohammed Badi as head of NMS, a pool of officers offering services to the County Government. Badi’s term of office expired with the election of Johnson Sakaja as county boss on August 2023, but the fate of NMS workers remains in the dark.

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