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Elachi rejects Sonko nominee : The Standard

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Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko. Nairobi has not had a deputy governor for the past two years. [File, Standard]
Nairobi Assembly Speaker Beatrice Elachi has sent back the name of Anne Mwenda to Governor Mike Sonko, saying he did not follow the procedure in nominating her as his deputy.

This is even as the Supreme Court is set to give direction on the legality of the nomination of Ms Mwenda as from February 6.  
Speaking to The Standard, Ms Elachi said Sonko did not follow the guidelines put in place by the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) in nominating Mwenda.
“I have sent the name back to the governor to ensure that the correct procedure is followed. I did not want to go ahead with the vetting and then be told that we did not follow procedure,” she said.
SEE ALSO :My life is in danger, says Nairobi Assembly majority leader Abdi GuyoMwenda, who is the Nairobi City County chief officer for disaster management and coordination, was nominated by Sonko as his deputy on January 6. Her name was consequently forwarded to City Hall through the speaker for vetting in line with a Supreme Court advisory of 2018.
Speaker Elachi, however, intimated that she sought advice from IEBC chairman Wafula Chebukati, who informed her of the guidelines that were developed by the commission soon after the Supreme Court’s advisory.
The guidelines were communicated to governors through their council on June 2018. One of the requirements is that when nominating a deputy, a governor must first submit the nominee’s name to IEBC for vetting.
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Once the name is received by the commission, it shall appoint a returning officer mandated to vet the nominee in line with the Constitution.
According to Chebukati, through the document, the deputy governor’s position is political and, therefore, anyone occupying the position must go through the set out verification process.
SEE ALSO :Jubilee saves Elachi from MCAs fangsThis includes abiding by the qualifications as stipulated in the Leadership and Integrity chapter of the Constitution.
“… it logically follows that such nominee must satisfy the Constitutional and statutory qualifications attendant to that office as contained in the Constitution and the Elections Act, 2011,” Chebukati said.
The rules stipulate that once the nominee for deputy governor is cleared, the commission provides her with a nomination clearance, and a copy of the same is forwarded to the governor.  
Once the governor receives the nomination, he/she shall then forward the nominee’s name to the county assembly for vetting, deliberation and possible approval.
Once approved by the county assembly, the speaker shall forward to the commission in writing the resolution of the assembly with recommendations approving the nominee to the office of the deputy county governor.
SEE ALSO :No let up in Elachi, Guyo clashTake oath
The commission shall consequently publish the appointment of the deputy governor in the Kenya Gazette.
After the gazettement, the speaker shall take necessary steps to facilitate the new deputy governor to take the oath of office.
Nairobi City County has been without a deputy governor for the past two years.
Elachi’s move to send back the name of Mwenda will further add to the crisis in the capital following the prosecution of Sonko.
SEE ALSO :Ward reps plot to impeach Elachi

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Beatrice ElachiAnne MwendaMike SonkoNairobi County

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Al-Shabaab leader, wife behind Manda Bay attack killed : The Standard

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Manda Bay military camp that was attacked by Al-Shabaab militants on January 5, 2020. [Jane Mugambi, Standard].
The US military says a senior Al-Shabaab leader behind the deadly January 5 attack on the Manda Bay base in Lamu, was killed in precision airstrikes, along with his wife.

The only strike reported by the US military February 22 occurred in the vicinity of Saakow, an Al-Shabaab stronghold in the Middle Juba region.
The military said the targeted individuals were identified as members of Al-Shabaab. The statement did not name the senior Al-Shabaab leader killed in the strike, but it says he was in charge of planning and directing terrorist operations along the Kenya border region, including the Manda Bay attack.
The statement said the senior leader’s wife also was a witting and active member of Al-Shabaab responsible for facilitating a wide range of terrorist activities.
SEE ALSO :Cuban doctors kidnapped in Mandera ‘are well’Three Americans, including a soldier and two contractors, were killed in the January 5 attack when the Manda Bay base was breached by the militants, who also destroyed six aircraft.
“Since Jan. 5, U.S. Africa Command and our partners have pursued those responsible for the attack on U.S. and Kenyan forces at Manda Bay,” said U.S. Army Gen. Stephen Townsend, commander, U.S. Africa Command.
“This strike demonstrates that we will continue to relentlessly pursue those responsible for Manda Bay and those wishing to do harm to Americans and our African partners.”
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During a hearing last month in the US Congress, General Townsend acknowledged the US military was not well prepared for the attack.
“We were not as prepared at Manda Bay as we needed to be,” he said.
SEE ALSO :Al-Shabaab raid a construction site in Mandera“Al-Shabab managed to penetrate on to that airfield… Killed three Americans and destroyed six aircraft, so we weren’t as prepared, and we are digging into that to find out why that is the case.”
During the attack, Al-Shabaab fighters fired mortars on the military installations while simultaneously assaulting the airfield. US and Kenyan troops responded to the attack, killing five Al-Shabaab members. Initial US military estimates said that “several dozen Al-Shabaab fighters” were involved in the assault.
A few days later, US military deployed additional forces (about 50 troops) to Kenya to bolster security at the Manda airfield.
Al-Shabaab is considered to be Al Qaeda’s largest affiliate, commanding some 5,000 fighters according to US military assessments.
There are approximately 600 Department of Defense personnel in Somalia where they primarily work with local Somali National Army forces to battle the al Qaeda affiliate.
SEE ALSO :Suspected Al-Shabaab gunmen hijack Lamu busUS military officials say they have trained some 1,000 light infantry troops known as the Danab which are seen as key to taking on Al-Shabaab.
While Al-Shabaab has lost control of much of the territory it once held in Somalia it maintains the ability to conduct high-profile attacks in Mogadishu and elsewhere.
The group is not seen as capable of attacking the US homeland but is considered a major threat to US forces and partners in the region.

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Al-ShabaabManda BayLamuTerrorism

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Kenya: Senior Al-Shabab Leader, Wife Behind Kenya’s Manda Bay Attack Killed – U.S.

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The U.S. military says a senior al-Shabab leader behind the deadly Jan. 5 attack on the Manda Bay base in Kenya, was killed Feb. 22 in precision airstrikes, along with his wife.

In a statement, the military says the targeted individuals were identified as members of al-Shabab. The statement did not name the senior al-Shabab leader killed in the strike, but it says he was in charge of planning and directing terrorist operations along the Kenya border region, including the Manda Bay attack.

The statement says the senior leader’s wife also was a “witting and active member of al-Shabab responsible for facilitating a wide range of terrorist activities.”

The only strike reported by the U.S. military Feb. 22 occurred in the vicinity of Saakow, an al-Shabab stronghold in the Middle Juba region. The United States reported that two al-Shabab individuals were killed in that strike.

Three Americans, including a soldier and two contractors, were killed in the Jan. 5 attack when the Manda Bay base was breached by the militants, who also destroyed six aircraft.

“Since Jan. 5, U.S. Africa Command and our partners have pursued those responsible for the attack on U.S. and Kenyan forces at Manda Bay,” said U.S. Army Gen. Stephen Townsend, commander, U.S. Africa Command. “This strike demonstrates that we will continue to relentlessly pursue those responsible for Manda Bay and those wishing to do harm to Americans and our African partners.”

During a hearing last month in the U.S. Congress, General Townsend acknowledged the U.S. military was not well prepared for the attack.

“We were not as prepared there at Manda Bay as we needed to be,” he said. “Al-Shabab managed to penetrate on to that airfield … killed three Americans and destroyed six aircraft, so we weren’t as prepared, and we are digging into that to find out why that is the case.”

Meanwhile, Somalia’s largest telecommunications company, Hormuud, says one of its employees was killed in Monday’s airstrike near the al-Shabab-held town of Jilib, Middle Juba region.

A spokesperson for Hormuud said the head of the company’s office in Jilib, Mohamud Haji Salad, was killed at his home there. Hormuud says Salad was a civilian who has been working for the company since 2002.

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“We confirm that this man was our employee,” says the spokesperson. “He had nothing to do with any group or organization.”