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Sonko: I can hire and fire whenever I want

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An unapologetic Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has told his critics that suspending or sacking officials is a global governance and management practice.

The embattled governor shelled out Sh858,400 for a full page ad in Friday’s Daily Nation after he was criticised for suspending 16 county officials following the Monday tragedy at Precious Talents school that killed eight pupils.

The governor protested against an article published by the Star on Thursday which stated the county was thrown into a crisis following his move to suspend the staff.

“Nothing can be further from the truth,” said Sonko.

He also took issues with another article published by the People Daily newspaper insinuating that his drastic action against county officials was a survival tactic against the ongoing investigations by the Ethics and Anti-Corruption Commission (EACC) on him.

RESHUFFLING

“I will not have any qualms at all firing, suspending or reshuffling employees a thousand times until I instill the right work culture and attitude in Nairobi to enable me realize my dream of restoring the long, lost glory of the “Green City under the Sun’,” he said in the statement.

He reminded the County Assembly leadership that he was still the governor of Nairobi and the buck stops with him.

READ ALSO:   Kenya Airports Authority responds to Sonko’s JKIA toilet rant

“I reserve the constitutional right to hire, fire, suspend or deploy any member of my cabinet without reference to anyone,” said Sonko.

On Wednesday, the governor suspended CEC Charles Kerich (Finance) who was his onetime darling and ‘Mr Fix It’ and 15 others.

By Nairobi News

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Kirinyaga MCAs head to the High Court to challenge Senate rulling

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BY KEVIN KOECH

Kirinyaga MCAs have filed a Petition to challenge the Senate ruling on Ann Waiguru’s impeachment case at the Kerugoya High Court.

The ward reps through their lawyer Ndegwa Njiru want the county boss to be charged afresh stating the upper House did not adhere to Constitutional requirements in handling the impeachment case.

Confirming the filing of the petition on Tuesday, July 7, the lawyer said the court should counter-check the report presented by the select 11-member committee that was chaired by Kakamega Senator Cleophas Malala as it was a “pure mistrial”.

“Let the court decide on the legal propriety of this Senate report on the impeachment of Governor Anne Waiganjo.

“We cannot allow state organs funded by greengrocers to abdicate on the Constitutional duties with impunity. We are filing today,” Njiru argued.

Njiru wondered why the Senate cleared the governor despite the massive evidence on corruption presented to the committee.

READ ALSO:   VIDEO: Sonko finds 12 bodies of infants hidden in boxes at Pumwani Hospital

“How can the Senate find that money was lost in the county and fail to punish those responsible?,” he posed.

The MCAs want a three-judge bench to hear their petition.

“We shall ask the Chief Justice to set up a three-judge bench once we are given a hearing date,” the lawyer said. We shall raise issues which have never been raised in this country.

“My clients were not satisfied with the trial so they will continue fighting until justice is served,” Njiru old the press after filling the petition.

Waiguru was impeached on Tuesday, June 9, after 23 out of 33 MCAs voted to kick her out of office.

After the Kirinyaga County Assembly speaker notified Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka, the House voted to have a 11-member select committee to probe the allegations levelled the governor.

The team in its findings cleared the governor saying the impeachment did not meet the threshold to impeache her.

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Lifestyle

Shock as mother plunges children, herself into river

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Luyekhe village on the border of Kakamega and Bungoma counties is still in shock after an expectant mother threw her three children in to a river and then jumped in.

Winny Kulangwa, 24, threw the children into River Nzoia at Mikua area about 9pm on Sunday. Luckily, one of the children survived to tell the story.

By last evening, search for bodies of Ms Kulangwa and her two children aged one and four, was still going on.

Villagers joined divers deployed by Kakamega County to look for the bodies in the swollen river. The woman is said to have to have taken the children to the nearby Nzoia Bridge and threw them into the water, one after the other, starting with the eldest, a seven-year-old girl, who survived.

The woman lived with her elder sister Alice Matende at their parents’ home. The girl who survived is a pupil at Mbaya Primary  in Kakamega. Locals described her survival as a miracle. Kulangwa’s relatives said she returned to Luyekhe a week ago from her matrimonial home in Mautuma, Kakamega and showed no signs she was disturbed.

The girl said her mother asked them to accompany her to the shop.

However, when they got to a certain shop, she insisted that they proceed to a different one.

READ ALSO:   Kenya Airports Authority responds to Sonko’s JKIA toilet rant

“It was dark and when we reached the bridge, my mother asked us to close our eyes for a surprise. She then grabbed me and threw me into the river. I was swept away by the water. I clutched onto some roots on the edge of the river,” the traumatised girl said.

She continued: “I struggled and got myself out of the river. I walked back to the bridge and I found no one. I broke down. Moments later, a man picked me up and took me to his house.”

Mr Joseph Chom, a resident of Mautuma who found the girl, said he had seen light from a spotlight coming from the bridge before he heard a child cry.

“She later explained to me what had happened,” he said. “I called my village elder and area chief before reporting the matter to the police.”

Residents said Kulangwa’s spotlight and a handbag were found at the bridge. Matende said she left Kulangwa and her children in the house but did not find them when she returned.

At first, I thought she had gone to a neighbour’s house only to learn later that her children were also missing.

“I had left her with my daughter. When I returned, I asked my daughter where she had gone, and she said she left with her children. We were later informed that she had drowned her children and herself,” she said.

READ ALSO:   Speaker Elachi seeks Court’s nod to serve as acting Nairobi Governor

Kulangwa’s grandfather Moina Omutoko,73, said she never complained about anything. Mr Martin Anyonge, a local Kenya Red Cross officer, said it has been a challenge retrieving the bodies because the river is swollen.

By STandard.co.ke

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Lifestyle

I rose after my many falls

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Betty Muthoni had her life well planned out; get educated to the highest level, have a job, get married and have children. Just like in fairy tales. But life is not a fairly tail— a few months after she joined college, she got pregnant.

“My mother was disappointed, but was still warm and loving. I gave birth in 2001 to my now 19-year-old daughter. After delivering, my mother and brother supported my return to college. It was a hard one, but we made it through,” shares the last born of six.

In 2003 she got her first job through the help of Visions Institute of Professionals’ career programme, which went a long way in providing for her little daughter. Soon after, she was to meet her “Mr Right” in 2006.

“Towards the end of 2007, we agreed to try marriage and see what would become of our lives. That was the beginning of a painful journey. God did bless us with two children in 2008 and 2009. But there was a lot of drama and betrayals. I cannot even comprehend how I stayed in that relationship. I was cheated on, hardly taken care of, physically abused and completely mentally tormented. He was hardly home. His whereabouts was shared to me scantly as and when he wanted,” says the mother of three about her marriage.

Betty says her second and third children came when there was not much hope to hold on to. In fact, she went into depression when she learned of her third pregnancy.

READ ALSO:   Governor Sonko reacts on Igathe’s resignation as Nairobi Deputy Governor

Walking out

“When I was about to deliver my third child, we had an ugly disagreement and a bad fight that I walked out. My brothers rescued me and took me to my mother’s house in the village. With two children and another on the way, my life was shattered. There was a lot of darkness glaring at my future. But the fighting spirit in me didn’t give up; I got out of the shell of darkness and made my way back to the city a few months after delivery. I was jobless for a long time and with an unsupportive partner, it was hard to imagine how the future would look like for me and my little ones. I walked out of the relationship, but with hopes of regaining our future for the sake of our kids and love. They say love is blind; well I did witness the blindness here. I now say, it could be blind, but it needs to have brains at least,” she intimates.

Were it not for a well-wisher who provided her with a two-roomed house, Betty and her children would have been homeless. She became Mama Fua to make ends meet.

“The job was not sustainable. I borrowed money from everyone who I knew until they got tired. One day I was at home after trying everything when an alumni from my former primary school called me. He knew my plight. During his errands hawking clothes, he had met a woman who was making customised calligraphy cards. They needed someone who could write. He recalled how my mother, a teacher, was strict in handwriting during his old primary school days and he imagined that I would never have missed a mark in that too. And he was right. A call and a meeting and an opportunity was born for me. I made Sh1,000 and this was to be my source of income for some time. I moved to hawking these cards and even making them,” shares Betty.

Betty with her children Dean Mwasere, BrownAngel Nyawira and Naldine Sere.

Turning point

READ ALSO:   To impeach or not to impeach

In 2014, she got a part-time sales job at Boderless Company, a tracking company. It required her to travel to the western region every week while travelling back to be with her children during weekends. It was not easy, but on the third month she was making quite enough. On the fifth month, she was promoted to sales and customer care manager. Six months later she was appointed business development manager, given a company car and a lot of other privileges.

In October 2016, she was appointed general manager, Track and Trace Limited, a vehicle tracking, fleet management, fuel monitoring company. The challenge was that she was to start a division from scratch. The only thing she was given was a license. “I took up the challenge prayerfully. I was the only employee to start this off, but I had been given two co-workers who were supposed to support me as and when I needed them. In 2017, we set a plan, did ground breaking and hired a number of employees. I closed the year with about 15 colleagues,” narrates Betty.

Fast forward in January this year, she was appointed Managing Director of the company. Under her are more than 50 coworkers. “My job entails overall revenue generation management, staff motivation, management of annual goals, laying our strategy for growth and expansion of the business, overall policies and procedures implementations and stakeholders’ management. This requires a lot attention to details, discipline, consistency, accountability and good knowledge of my employees to allow them work freely to their full capacity for us to achieve our full productivity,” she says.

READ ALSO:   Sonko to airlift Kibera residents to visit their ailing MP Ken Okoth in France

AT A GLANCE

• Betty Muthoni pursued Certified Public Accountants (CPA) at Visions Institute of Professionals.

• She walked out of her marriage with three children after being neglected, and physically and mentally abused.

• Her never-say- die attitude and faith in God saw her through difficult moments.

• Having been brought up by a single mum after her father passed on while she was still a child, also went a long way in strengthening her resolve into adulthood.

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