Mike Sonko shifts Rescue Team to Mombasa
Former Nairobi governor Mike Sonko says he has relocated his famed Sonko rescue team from Nairobi to Mombasa in what analysts believe is his latest campaign gimmick.
The flamboyant politician made the announcement on his socials while attributing the decision to ‘public demand’.
Due to public demand in Mombasa County, we were moved by the prevailing circumstances to immediately start our services in rescuing the needy families whose bodies of their deceased loved ones are lying in various mortuaries due to huge funeral expenses. pic.twitter.com/izgUNi0kSz
— Mike Sonko (@MikeSonko) May 3, 2022
The Sonko rescue team has operated for close to a decade while offering a variety of services to the needy for free, including water, hearse, and medical attention.
The Rescue Team at times also distributes free food and other accessories to poor and needy residents.
The Rescue Team consists of dozens of vehicles, some of which are high-end and have employed hundreds of youths with a questionable background who are supposedly empowered to earn a living and to reform.
However, critics have described the Rescue Team as an alternative government and questioned the source of its funding which runs into millions of shillings.
The relocation to Mombasa comes at a time Sonko has expressed interest in vying for the county’s gubernatorial seat.
If cleared, he will battle it out with the area former senator Hassan Omar, prominent businessman Suleiman Shahbal, Mvita lawmaker Abdulswamad Nassir, area Deputy Governor Dr. William Kingi, Kisauni lawmaker Ali Mbogo and Hezron Bollo, the former Nyali Member of Parliament, in a tight race to succeed incumbent Governor Hassan Joho.
The popular Sonko was elected and then impeached as Nairobi governor in the past five years with county assembly leaders and senators’ findings indicating incriminating evidence of corruption and financial impropriety. He has challenged the findings in court.
He is also facing corruption-related charges in court and was recently, alongside his immediate family, banned from visiting the United States of America owing to the corruption allegations.
Sonko is also remembered for signing off-key functions of the county government to the national government at State House which led to the formation of the Nairobi Metropolitan Services.
He would later claim he signed the deed in the presence of President Uhuru Kenyatta and the then Devolution Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa when under the influence of alcohol.
“Hawa watu wa State House waliniconfuse na pombe kwanza (some people at State House confused me with some alcohol) by the time I was meeting the President for the signing I was just seeing zigzag,” he said.
Mombasa is Kenya’s second largest city, tourist and resort city, and holds the country’s main port, one of the country’s main assets.