Nairobi Floods: Governor Sakaja Accused Of ‘Sleeping On The Job’

Criticism is mounting against Governor Johnson Sakaja of Kenya over his government’s response to the recent heavy rains and resulting flooding in the country. Senator Tabitha Mutinda, speaking out on Thursday, accused Governor Sakaja of incompetence in handling the crisis, which has claimed over fifteen lives in the capital city.

Senator Mutinda, serving as the vice-chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance and Budget, highlighted the lack of organization within Nairobi and the failure to access funds allocated by the National Treasury for the Financing Locally-Led Climate Action program (FLLOCA). Despite the Senate’s approval of these funds, they have not been utilized due to failure to meet basic conditions, such as appointing a Chief Executive Officer (CEC) in charge of climate or environmental affairs and establishing a dedicated account for the funds.

When questioned about the responsible party for this delay, Senator Mutinda squarely placed the blame on the executive branch, implicating Governor Sakaja.

The senator further criticized the ineffective use of emergency funds allocated by the Nairobi County Assembly for flood mitigation efforts. Despite hiring personnel to clear drainage systems before the rains, the improper disposal of waste led to repeated clogging of the drainage, exacerbating the flooding situation.

Additionally, Mutinda raised concerns about the appointment of underqualified individuals to key positions within the disaster management department in Nairobi, emphasizing the importance of having competent personnel in such critical roles.

Governor Sakaja acknowledged the severity of the situation, reporting sixteen fatalities and 60,000 affected individuals in Nairobi alone, but assured that the county government was addressing the issue. However, nationwide, the floods have claimed 179 lives, with 195,011 people displaced and 90 individuals still missing, according to Government Spokesperson Isaac Mwaura’s official statement.