Anne Mwenda Kananu, nominated as deputy governor by Mike Sonko, just might take centre stage and avoid a polarising by-election.
Kananu is the current chief officer for disaster management – fitting – and acting chief officer for water. She’s an expert in criminology and forensics.
Sonko nominated her as his deputy last year in January, two years after Polycarp Igathe resigned. Sonko has since been impeached and there’s no deputy in place, someone who could become acting governor .
Kananu, 40, was among the original chief officers who were vetted and approved by the assembly in April 2018.
She has survived the constant reshuffles until November 2019, when she was named acting chief officer for water.
Kananu was born in Embu county and attended St Michael Primary School in the same county from Standard 1–8. She describes her childhood as humble; she is the lastborn child.
Her favourite subjects were Mathematics and Science. She once said her favourite teacher was a strict disciplinarian who taught her to do things the right way.
After doing her KCPE exam, she joined Our Lady of Mercy Girls, Nagundu.
In high school, her favourite subject were the sciences, especially Biology, as she enjoyed getting out in nature. Kiswahili was also a favourite. She joined the music club and played handball.
After completing her secondary education, Kananu joined the University of Nairobi for a certificate in Public Relations and Human Resources.
She later joined St Paul’s University for a diploma course in criminology.
Kananu attended Dedan Kimathi University for a Bachelor of Science degree in Criminology and Security Management. She majored in Forensics Investigations. She had wanted to be a forensics expert when she grew up.
“I’m a hardworking person who likes to explore different fields to learn more on different things that affect our livelihoods,” she said last year.
Her breakthrough came when she applied for the position of county chief officer in 2018. She went through rigorous interviews by the Nairobi County Public Service Board before being vetted by the assembly Committee on Culture.
Upon her acceptance by the assembly, she assumed the responsibilities of a chief officer in charge of disaster management and coordination. She joined City Hall in May 2018 as Disaster Management chief officer.
The former security supervisor in charge of Quality Control and Training at Kenya Airports Authority was married to Philip Njiru Muthathai who died in a road accident in January 2019.