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Two Nairobians sue to have Igathe’s resignation annulled

By MAUREEN KAKAH February 20th, 2018 2 min read

Two city residents have moved to court to protest against the vacancy of the position of the deputy governor for Nairobi.

Mr Simon Kokoyo and Mr Javan Owala have sued Jubilee party, Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko and the Attorney General, arguing that the resignation of Polycarp Igathe could throw the leadership of the city into a leadership crisis and that the rights of the residents who voted for the governor and his deputy could be prejudiced with the absence.

The duo claims that the working relationship between the Nairobi governor and his deputy under the Jubilee party ticket during the campaigns before they were voted into office was deemed to be complimentary hence they were elected as a package.

And since there is no clarity in law addressing the replacement of a deputy governor in the event of a vacancy, they argued that there would be continuous precedence of undermining the role of a deputy governor.

“There is an urgent need for this court to move with speed as a custodian of the majesty of the constitution to reign in the rule of law by protecting the office of the deputy governor,” said Mr Kokoyo.

In the case documents, the duo argued that the governor and his deputy were elected in the August 8, 2017 polls hence they entered into a social contract with the public.


They alleged that in the said social contract, Mr Igathe was to be the technocrat in charge of management of the county’s administration and service delivery while Mr Mbuvi was to lead political affairs.

They also alleged that the constitution assumes that both the governor and his deputy are a pair during their term of office since being elected as a package.

“There is a real and present danger that unless intervened by the court, the rights of Nairobi County will be prejudiced,” said Mr Kokoyo.

The suit comes soon after  governor Sonko appointed former Nairobi Town Clerk John Gakuo as the co-chair of the Nairobi Regeneration Committee to aid Nairobi retain its lost glory.

Mr Igathe left City Hall on January 31 while Mr Gakuo assumed office as from February 15.

On Mr Igathe’s resignation letter dated January 12, he had pointed out that the move had been as a result of the failure to earn the trust of his boss, governor Sonko to enable him deliver services to Nairobians.

His resignation came just after an election petition challenging Mr Sonko’s election was withdrawn, barely six months into the office.

But the governor on his part denied having a strained relationship with Mr Igathe.

And his appointment of Mr Gakuo to be part of the leadership meant to revive Nairobi’s lost glory has been assumed as having replaced Mr Igathe.

According to the duo that moved to court, they now want the matter treated as urgent and an order issued declaring the resignation of Mr Igathe as null and void.

They also want a temporary order issued blocking Mr Mbuvi from being absent from office until there is a substantive deputy governor.