The troubling times for Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko don’t seem to be reducing as the Director of Public Prosecutions Noordin Haji has ordered his immediate arrest and arraignment in court. However, the twist is that should the Governor be prosecuted, then Nairobi County assembly speaker Beatrice Elachi will fill in as Governor, given that Governor Sonko hadn’t nominated a Deputy Governor. In a past ruling by judge Mumbi Ngugi, elected executives cannot continue attending office when facing corruption related charges.
Speaking on Friday to the press, DPP Noordin Haji said following comprehensive investigations by EACC and upon receiving and independently reviewing the investigation file, he has found sufficient evidence to warrant Sonko’s prosecution along with other officials, for crimes of conflict of interests in receiving money from the County of Nairobi while still serving, unlawful acquisition of public property, money laundering and other economic crimes.
Governor Sonko had already been grilled by EACC officers more than once, and he had even headed to court to try and stop investigations. DPP Haji noted that the investigations weren’t easy because of deliberate efforts to influence them, “Investigations into these crimes have been challenging because of repeated attempts by the accused to obstruct the course of investigations by deploying intimidation tactics in addition to using goons to threaten law enforcement officials carrying out their constitutional mandate,” he said.
He noted that EACC uncovered numerous incidents of criminal conduct and general disregard to the law by the Governor and the other accused persons, “The accused persons placed their own interests ahead of the residents of Nairobi.”