Nairobi tycoon in Sonko bribery saga arraigned

Nairobi tycoon in Sonko bribery saga arraigned

A Nairobi businessman who was arrested for allegedly attempting to bribe Nairobi Govenor Mike Sonko, has denied the accusations.

Praful Kumar was arraigned before Mombasa Senior Principal Magistrate Henry Nyakweba where he was charged with three counts of giving a bribe.

The court was told that the businessman offered Governor Sonko Ksh.1 million to allow him continue with construction of his Grand Manor Hotel in Gigiri, Nairobi.

Mr. Kumar denied the charges and was detained until Wednesday when his bail application will be determined.

The tycoon was arrested on Monday, August 2o at his residence in Kanamai, Kilifi County on allegations that he intended to bribe Governor Sonko to influence him against stopping the construction of his hotel in Gigiri, Nairobi.

Documents seen by Citizen TV show that Gigiri residents and several embassies have been pushing to have the hotel’s construction halted amid claims that it compromises the area’s security.

The Grand Manor Hotel is situated opposite the US Embassy on one side, and the United Nations head offices on the other side. On its left, is the High Commission of Botswana and on the right is the Embassy of Morocco stretching to its backyard.

The genesis of controversy partly stems from its proximity to the embassies, with the foreign missions writing to the county government and the foreign affairs ministry to protest its construction.

But the hotel has been under construction with the approval of the Nairobi City County government.

The Grand Manor Hotel in Gigiri, Nairobi. PHOTO| CITIZEN DIGITAL