What you need to know:
- Ms Elachi had also been prepared for it and was only counting days to break the big news.
- According to multiple sources, the meeting was convened by President Kenyatta.
- However, Ms Elachi was not part of it.
- A pocket of ward reps who were in support of her leadership were also not involved in the meeting.
The resignation of Nairobi County Assembly Speaker Beatrice Elachi might have come as a shocker to many, but for insiders, it was only a matter of when and not if.
Top leaders of Jubilee, her party, knew about it, and the MCAs, especially those she was at loggerheads with, were just waiting for the announcement.
Ms Elachi had also been prepared for it and was only counting days to break the big news.
A meeting at State House about two weeks ago sealed the fate of the embattled Speaker.
But the meeting was a closely guarded secret and no one was willing to disclose its details for obvious reasons — there were express and firm gag orders not to divulge any information.
Ward reps privy to the top secret could only communicate it through body language and ambiguous statements like “just watch this space, there is something big cooking”.
But even with lips muted, Ms Elachi’s body language a few days to Tuesday’s announcement revealed it all.
She had resigned to her fate and anyone who met her recently would attest to that.
The former nominated senator knew the end was nigh as her neck was already on the chopping board, and there was no turning back.
A long-drawn meeting on Monday sealed the date of the announcement.
And on Tuesday morning, the country woke up to the news of her resignation, with Deputy Speaker John Kamangu taking over as the Speaker in an acting capacity.
“This morning I want to humbly tender my resignation to the President of Kenya Uhuru Kenyatta having served as Speaker from September 2017 to date. Notwithstanding, for the last few days, we have seen lots of conflict and even life threatening incidences (sic),” said Ms Elachi.
“I humbly tender my resignation and for continuity of the institution, I appoint my deputy pursuant to the law and the new Act, John Kamangu, to take over as the acting Speaker and the chairman of the assembly’s board as the assembly prepares to recruit a new Speaker,” she added.
According to multiple sources who spoke to the Nation on condition of anonymity, the meeting was convened by President Kenyatta and attended by Governor Mike Sonko and at least 41 Jubilee MCAs allied to the new leadership at the assembly led by Majority Leader Abdi Guyo and Majority Whip Paul Kados.
Supporters locked out
However, Ms Elachi was not part of it. A pocket of ward reps who were in support of her leadership were also not involved in the meeting.
“He (the President) told us that he wanted to listen to us over what was causing chaos at the assembly. People opened up and told him the source of friction,” said the source.
“The meeting was a top secret and the order was that details were not to be divulged until after the resolution of the problem. He promised to solve the problem within two weeks.”
The source further intimated that the President was categorical he was going to fix Nairobi.
He warned Sonko that he will be next if he will also not work harmoniously with Nairobi Metropolitan Services Director-General Mohammed Badi.
Another source disclosed that Ms Elachi’s resignation was not something out of the blues but a consequence of the meeting at the House on the Hill.
He said the Speaker lost the President’s goodwill after all the MCAs blamed her for being behind the friction between Major-General Badi and Sonko.
“There was a meeting with the President at State House and what has happened is as a result of that meeting. However, more details will be disclosed once everything has fallen into place, but just know that she did not resign out of her own will. She was directed to do so,” said the source.