Underfire Nairobi governor Mike Sonko allegedly splashed millions of taxpayers’ money to treat his daughter to an outlandish trip to New York.
Speaking during the Senate plenary hearing on Wednesday following Sonko’s impeachment on December 3, Nairobi assembly Minority Leader Michael Ogada detailed how the governor misappropriated about Sh4.6 million to facilitate Saumu Mbuvi’s trip to New York in March, 2018.
“The governor Mike Mbuvi Sonko oversaw and authorised the financing of an illegal, irregular, extravagant, exorbitant and flashy trip to New York, USA, for his daughter Saumu Agnes Mbuvi to the tune of Sh4.6 million,” the Embakasi Ward MCA avered.
The ward rep said Ms Mbuvi went on the trip disguised as a county administrator purporting to attend the County First Lady’s conference held during the 62nd session of the Commission for the Status of Women 2018.
The Senate heard that in addition to flying First Class to New York, Saumu Mbuvi chartered a chopper to fly her around the city.
“The daughter flew in a first-class flight to New York costing the taxpayer Sh840,000 shillings, which I know very few Kenyans are permitted to fly first class using public funds,” Ogada testified.
He added: “Mr Speaker on the same trip, besides flying first class, a chopper was hired for her at the cost Sh200,000 to go round New York City and see how beautiful the city was, using public funds. She then went ahead to have an outside party at the cost of Sh260,000.
“She was transferred from the First Lady’s conference to Philadelphia at a cost of Sh60,000. In Philadelphia, she went to visit tourist Sites at a cost of Sh100,000. She was accompanied by the media, who were paid, Sh120,000. While she was there, they were able to spend around Ksh 300,000 on ground transport,” Ogada said.
The MCA also testified that a county official was forced to withdraw Sh2.6 million from the county coffers, which she gave to governor Sonko’s bodyguard to be used by her daughter.
“The Sh2.6 million used on per diem, a junior officer from the county was forced to go and withdraw it using her name in the company of a bodyguard of His Excellency the Governor. After withdrawing the cash, the bodyguard walked away with [money],”
Part of the money was allegedly wired directly to the airline which later processed the air ticket for Saumu Mbuvi.