The High Court has issued orders temporarily stopping a possible swearing-in of Anne Kananu Mwenda as Nairobi County Governor pending a case filed by the Law Society of Kenya (LSK).
The orders were issued on Monday by Justice Anthony Mrima.
LSK moved to court on Monday morning, seeking orders mandating a by-election within the 60-days legal timeline as provided for under Article 182 (5).
The society wants the court to halt a plan to confirm Ms Mwenda as a substantive governor even as Nairobi County Assembly Speaker Benson Mutura, who has been acting as the city boss since December 21, 2020, following the impeachment of Mike Mbuvi Sonko, relinquished powers to her on Monday.
LSK led by its President Nelson Havi was opposed to the swearing-in of Kananu as Deputy Governor.
The LSK boss told a local media, in an interview that “the swearing-in of Anne Kananu amounts to a coup upon the constitution.”
The swearing-in ceremony took place on Friday at the Kenyatta International Convention Centre (KICC) moments after Ms Mwenda, who was nominated by Sonko, was vetted and approved for the position by a 10-member committee of the county assembly.
The Members of the County Assembly went on with the vetting exercise after Justice Mrima dismissed two applications by activist Okiya Omtatah and Habil Kongo challenging the process.
Sonko had earlier claimed to have withdrawn Ms Mwenda’s nomination in a letter dated December 7, 2020, a move that was aimed at blocking her from succeeding him.
But while responding to queries from Members of County Assembly (MCAs), Ms Mwenda said the letter was “blank”.
“The purpose of that video was to show the public that he had sent the letter to me but I can confidently say the letter was blank with no authorising signature or stamp. The letter was not even dated December 7th,” she said.
The rushed swearing-in of Ms Mwenda shut hopes for candidates who had expressed interest in vying for the governor seat in a by-election that had been slated for February 18, 2021, by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC).