In Summary
  • The letter stated that the conference was a joint venture between the executive and assembly and would strengthen the ability of the latter to oversight the former.
  • Minority Chief Whip Imwatok reiterated his desire to bring forth an impeachment motion against Mr Sonko when the fourth session of the second assembly resumes.

Even before the ink dries up on a ruling denying Governor Mike Sonko permission to travel to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for a UN-Habitat conference, more details have now emerged over the failed trip.

In a document seen by the Sunday Nation, 32 Nairobi members of county assembly (MCAs) - with some members of the County Executive Committee (CEC) - were supposed to accompany the governor to the Middle East before the court’s ruling jolted the plans.

Hiding under the UAE Conference on Sustainable Urban Development and Human Settlement, the plan was to have the ward representatives outside the country for the duration of the conference, between February 7-13.

The timing of the trip raised eyebrows as it was made to coincide with the return of official sittings of Nairobi County Assembly next week after a two-month recess, putting Governor Sonko’s administration on the spotlight once again.

On the list are 10 opposition MCAs, all allied to the governor, and 12 from the Jubilee Party.


In a letter seen by the Sunday Nation, the Nairobi County Secretary was requested for facilitation of living and transport expenses of the delegation, which also included acting County Assembly Clerk Monica Muthami.

The letter stated that the conference was a joint venture between the executive and assembly and would strengthen the ability of the latter to oversight the former.

“The Nairobi County Assembly would like to request the County Executive to finance the delegation to attend this important meeting. The duration of the visit will be six days. We are requesting the County Executive to cater for all the living and transport expenses during the period,” reads in part the letter signed by Ms Muthami.

“This is, therefore, to kindly request your office to facilitate the members and staff to enable them to travel to Dubai,” added the letter stamped as received by the County Secretary’s office on February 6, 2020. The conference is being held in Abu Dhabi, not Dubai.

However, an invitation letter to Nairobi County Health executive Hitan Majevdia, formerly Roads and Transport CEC, by UN-Habitat Executive-Director Maimunah Sharif does not mention any invitation to the MCAs.


Ms Sharif indicates that the focus of the conference would be relevant to the departments of finance, housing, urban development, culture, national heritage, innovation, science, information and technology.

The conference is meant to offer opportunities to showcase urban solutions and to network with other practitioners and policymakers facing similar development opportunities and challenges.

“I am pleased to invite you to the 10th session of the World Urban Forum to be held from February 8-13, 2020 at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Centre in the capital city Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates,” said Ms Sharif in the February 4 letter.

An ouster motion has been hanging over the head of Mr Sonko ever since he was arrested and subsequently barred from accessing office last December over a Sh357 million corruption case facing him.

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