Newly elected Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has rubbished claims that President Uhuru Kenyatta is intending to scrap Nairobi county and revert its administration to the national government.
Sonko clarified that his county government will only partner with the national government on many projects, dismissing the claims as untrue and unfounded.
The law provides that to scrap a county from the 47, a constitutional referendum must be held.
Sonko said that there are initiatives taken to enhance deeper partnership between Nairobi county and the national government, adding that the collaboration can not be understood to scrapping of the county.
“As Jubilee, we believe in devolution. That is why we have delivered the largest number of governors,” the governor said.
“During my inauguration, I was clear that because Nairobi is an international hub, I will partner with the national government in implementing various projects to ensure that Nairobi residents receive services.”
Sonko cited a programme in which the national government helped equipped county hospitals, adding that Nairobi county will carry out joint projects with the national government to modernise roads and infrastructure.
He named a railway line from the Jomo Kenyatta International Airport to the city centre, and more roads with overpasses to reduce traffic jams as some of the projects the two will collaborate in.
“These mega projects, you must partner with the national government,” he said.
“It is in the law that issues like public private partnerships, borrowing and many others require partnership with the national government.”
There were claims that a Bill would be tabled in Parliament seeking to give powers to the President to appoint a Cabinet Secretary to head the city.
“Jubilee has no powers to revert the Nairobi county to the national government, unless through a referendum, which I believe many Kenyans will religiously oppose,” International Centre for Policy and Conflict executive director Ndung’u Wainaina said in reference with the claims.
“We will mobilise Nairobi residents to demonstrate and seek the courts support so that we govern ourselves in Nairobi as demanded by the 2010 Constitution under devolution,” Aladwa said.
“People will not use shortcuts to impose leaders on us.” Makadara MP and former Nairobi mayor George Aladwa reacted to the rumor.