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Sonko declares fired senior officers ‘persona non grata’ at City Hall

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has once again pulled a fast one on his senior officers after a fallout, by publishing the names of three members of his cabinet he recently fired.

In a public notice on local daily today, Governor Sonko warned members of the public against engaging in any transactions with the said persons.


The three are former Agriculture CEC Winfred Gathangu, her Finance counterpart Pauline Kahiga and Economic Planning Chief Officer Dr Washington Makodingo.

“This is therefore to notify the general public and all institutions that the said persons are not authorized to transact any business on behalf of Nairobi City County Government and any transaction carried out by them or their proxies are null and void,” reads the notice signed by order of the County Governor.

This not the first time the governor has pulled such a move on his staff. In January 2018, the former Nairobi Senator published the name of his former Personal Assistant Ben Mulwa and two others after falling out with them and subsequently firing them.

Governor Sonko sacked both Ms Kahiga and Ms Gathangu last month in the latest reorganisation of his cabinet.

The public notice from the Nairobi County Government. PHOTO | COURTESY
The public notice from the Nairobi County Government. PHOTO | COURTESY

In their places came former Jubilee Party 2017 Nairobi Women Representative aspirant Karen Nyamu for the Agriculture docket, pending vetting, while Trade CEC Allan Igambi was moved to replace Ms Kahiga.

However, Ms Kahiga continues to run the Finance department and even made a Sh166.9 million payment to Kenya Medical Supplies Authority (Kemsa) last week for supply of drugs to the county government’s health facilities.

The Government Press continues to recognise Ms Kahiga as the bona fide holder of the position leaving Mr Igambi helpless and legally unable to transact any business on behalf of the county government.

On Monday, she also paid the more than 12,000 City Hall workers their salary as she is yet to be degazetted as the county’s Finance CEC.


Nonetheless, the jinxed Finance office continues to have no physical holder as both Mr Igambi and Ms Kahiga operate away from the office.

Last week, the Solicitor General Ken Ogeto said Governor Sonko was right to reshuffle his cabinet by replacing Ms Kahiga with Mr Igambi.

On her part, Ms Gathangu has since left the county government.

For Dr Makodingo, his goose was cooked two weeks ago when goons forcefully tried to evict him from office taking the intervention of the police who came to his rescue.

“Some rowdy men had been sent to kick me out of the office because I refused to pay part of the pending bills as ordered by county boss which I know if I did would raise problems,” said Dr Makodingo.

He is still in office at City Hall Annex transacting county government business insisting he has never received any letter firing from the county government.

He further said Mr Sonko cannot fire him as he is employed, as are other chief officers, by the Nairobi County Public Service Board.

“For the record, I have never seen a letter firing me. He has also never called me since he was arrested. He has on two occasions sent people to come and evict me from office claiming that I am no longer an employee of the county government,” said Dr Makodingo.

“The governor has no power to fire a chief officer and even if he were to tell me by word of mouth I wouldn’t leave because he has no power to fire me as I am employed by the Board,” he added.