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Home / World / Mike Sonko, Governor of Nairobi, announced the issue of a politician at his funeral and set up a hotline to find out the dead fathers of the legislature

Mike Sonko, Governor of Nairobi, announced the issue of a politician at his funeral and set up a hotline to find out the dead fathers of the legislature



After MP Ken Okoth died of cancer last month at the age of 41, Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko publicly reported an alleged affair between the deceased MP, who was a friend of his, and a wife, which was nominated for Nairobis district assembly.
Sonko, 44, said at a remembrance broadcast on local television: "Ken had a son with one of the nominated Nairobi MCAs [Members of County Assembly] .The two lovebirds did not hide the fact that they shared a son, as pictures show and various documented correspondence. "

Governor Sonko commented on a funeral parish that included Okoth's Italian-born wife, whom he met at college in Austria and with whom he had no children.

Sonko's words inadvertently touched a nerve, provoked criticism among some politicians, and split opinion in this deeply religious and conservative society, where such family affairs are likely to be broadcast only in the privacy of the home.

CNN's efforts to ask Sonko and his associates to comment were unsuccessful. When asked about the governor's comments, Okoth's brother Imran Okoth told CNN, "No comment, it's a personal matter." The alleged mother of Okoth's child declined to comment.

Nairobians immediately went into social media with the hashtag #Sonko, jokingly warning one another not to share their secrets with the governor, who would inevitably reveal them in a very public manner.

But Sonko claimed to have a higher purpose for his utterances. He explained to the mourner: "My humble appeal is that as we prepare to bury Ken, we do not forget his son, he also needs and has the right to attend the sending of his beloved father, and the family should accept that Honorable Okoth's son enjoys legal protection and recognition. "

Sonko, who has three children, is best described as an outsider operator. But his comments reflect a very real problem in Kenya, where many children go through life without fatherly support.

According to the Kenya Demographic and Health Survey (KDHS) of 201
4, nearly half of Kenyan children did not live with their biological parents, and 22% of children were from single mother households, even though their fathers were alive.
In a case of 2017, in which a man claimed poverty as a mitigating factor in his inability to feed his child, a Supreme Court judge ruled that men could not escape responsibility for caring for their children even if they claim they do not have the resources.
  Mike Sonko, Governor of Nairobi, speaks to the media after the elections in April 2017.

Sonko continued the debate on parental responsibility by targeting his fellow politicians. He posted two phone numbers on his Facebook page and invited women to contact his office if they had similar experiences with lawmakers.
"When you send details about which Deputy Senator, Governor, Businessman impregnated you, remember to send his number full name and the position he holds, as well as photos or videos of those lucky moments for us to share them can reveal, "he said in another post.

On Friday Sonko announced on Facebook that he had received numerous complaints from women via his hotline. His "investigation", as he described it, revealed that many politicians had impregnated their girlfriends and "refused to take responsibility for their babies [for]."

Sonko said that evidence of some of these violations would soon be published in newspapers and on his Facebook page. None of these allegations could be verified by CNN.

The consequences of Sonko's funeral remarks spread to Kenya's capital. Has the governor been right to so publicly expose the alleged infidelity of his friend the legislator?

Brandish Kotia, a restaurant owner, told CNN: "What Sonko did was not right, it's family matters, they could have just talked, there was no need to make it so public."

Mary, a shopkeeper in the Westlands District of Nairobi who refused to give her last name because she was sensitive to politicians, agreed with Sonko, "This will be a lesson for everyone." There are too many hiding places, and if They are trying to tell the men they do not want to hear about it, but now everyone will be watchful. "

The men CNN spoke with largely refused to comment and shook their heads at the audacity of the governor. "He's leaving us men," a taxi driver said before he set off.

  Kenyan MP arrested, accused of beating colleague

And despite the Governor's public concern for single mothers too The question of how the Kenyan parliament treats its female members has increased. In June, a male lawmaker was charged with assaulting a deputy and last week a deputy was kicked out of parliament for bringing her five-month-old baby into the chamber because the rules did not allow children.

After the episode at the funeral, there were also tensions between female legislators, women's rights groups and Sonko.

Suba North MP Millie Odhiambo, a member of the opposition Orange Democratic Movement, criticized the governor and led to a fierce online exchange.
"and added that she had worked hard to pass laws protecting all children." I pushed for Article 53 of the constitution, which protects the late son of Ken Okoth. Once the DNA confirms that he is Ken Okoth's son, he will be entitled under inheritance law to inherit from Ken's estate. He is protected. He's covered, "said Odhiambo.
The governor took the bait and shot back to Odhiambo in another Facebook post:" I long for the day when you open your legs to give birth to a child So that you may experience the pain that the mothers I defend are going to have to respect the single mothers who fight with their children when men are missing.
  Kenyan MP dismissed for bringing baby

Sonko lost respect In Memory of Kachambwa, executive director of the African Women's Development & Communication Network, which promotes gender equality and women's empowerment in 47 countries.

"You can not speak from both corners of my mouth and duplicate Applying standards when you pretend to speak for women, "Kachambwa told CNN." It's absurd to seek out when your utterances and actions are highly sexist and objectify the same women you claim to speak for. And who said in any case that women can not speak for themselves? "

Poverty is an unlikely issue for Kenyan lawmakers who receive 76 times the average wage a Kenyan earns in a year – the second highest number according to a study by the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) of 2013 and the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

Given such salaries, many average Kenyans would say that they are politicians who err in this way should afford to take care of their offspring.


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