Sonko suspends 16 top county officials over Precious Talent Academy tragedy

Sonko suspends 16 top county officials over Precious Talent Academy tragedy

Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko has suspended 16 top county officials following the tragic incident that left eight pupils from Precious Talent Academy dead.

In a statement issued on Wednesday, Sonko said the suspended officials among them County ministers for Finance Charles Kerich and his Health counterpart Mohammed Dagane, had been sent home to pave way for investigations into how the building that collapsed killing the learners was approved.

The Governor said the tragedy at Precious Talent School was a result of “the impunity that was spearheaded by a few rogue officials within the Urban Planning Department.”

“I am convinced beyond doubt that drastic measures have to be taken to reverse the effects of years of flouting Physical Planning Regulations and restore order and sanity, before illegal structures claim more lives as has repeatedly happened before,” said the Governor.

He further stated that the suspension of the 16 officials among them County Executive Committee Members would allow for conclusion of the ongoing comprehensive systems audit in the Urban Planning Department.

Sonko has since appointed Pauline Kahiga and Veska Kangogo as Acting County Executive Committee Members for Finance & Economic Planning and Health respectively.

Here is the list of the suspended officials:

1. Charles Kerich, the current County Executive Committee Member (CECM) for Finance and Economic Planning, who is the immediate former CECM for Lands and Urban Planning
2. Mohammed Dagane – CECM Health (responsible for general public health and safety)
3. Justus Kathenge, suspended County Chief Officer for Urban Planning (to continue in suspension)
4. Jusper Ndeke, Director Planning Compliance and Enforcement
5. Dominic Mutegi, Development Management Director
6. Ochanda Ondari Fredrick, Assistant Director Enforcement
7. Ruth Waruguru, Director Urban Planning
8. Thomas Dudi, Assistant Director Planning
9. Simon Onyango, Development Officer (regularization of buildings/approval of architectural plans)
10. Alex Mucheru, Development Control (overseeing approvals of buildings and schools on behalf of public health and safety)
11. Mackline Saitera, Development Control (approval of building plans and school inspection)
12. Edna Guantai, In-charge of approval of public buildings and schools on behalf of public health
13. Joyce Kyengo, Dagoretti South Sub-County Administrator
14. Lucy Wairimu Munyika, Dagoretti South Sub-County Commander.
15. Sylivia Mwikali Nthinga, Dagoretti South Sub-County Planning Officer
16. Okal Kennedy, Ngando Ward Administrator

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