By MUMBI MUTUKO 

Former Nairobi Governor, Mike Sonko, caused a commotion in the Madaraka Express train.

On Saturday, December 11, Sonko opted to travel on the Standard Gauge Railway (SGR) and passengers were excited when they spotted him travelling with them, Kenyans.co.ko reports.

Passengers bombarded Sonko and took pictures with him. The politician obliged their requests to take selfies and the passengers in the carriage flocked around him.

Former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko in the Madaraka Express on Saturday, December 11, 2021.
Former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko in the Madaraka Express on Saturday, December 11, 2021.
FILE

All this time, a Madaraka Express steward stood next to Sonko awaiting to usher him to his seat. The steward was forced to remain patient as passengers stood up in turns to take pictures with the ousted governor.

Kenyans also acknowledged Sonko with some pointing out they still viewed him as the county boss even after he was ejected from office in December 2020.

Sonko made his way to the front cabin where the crew was holed up and exchanged greetings with them. The former county boss thanked the crew for their service and encouraged them to maintain the standards the Madaraka Express had set.

The Madaraka Express has attracted VIPs such as President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Ugandan counterpart, Yoweri Museveni, who took the train to Mombasa on separate occasions.

In 2017, President Kenyatta was part of the Standard Gauge Railway maiden trip where he was guarded by seven choppers on air from Mombasa to Nairobi during the seven-hour ride.

He was back again in 2018 December, where he surprised passengers on board. Uhuru chose to travel to Mombasa via the SGR during the festive season. The President freely mingled with Kenyans and took pictures with them.

“Earlier today, I took the SGR train from Nairobi to Mombasa, during which I met and interacted with fellow commuters who shared their interesting experiences about the service. I am glad that the SGR train services have enhanced travel for people between the two cities,” he stated at the time.

Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni took the SGR ride from Mombasa to Nairobi making history as the first visiting Head of State to take the 4-hour ride in 2019.

President Museveni, who was accompanied by CSs Monica Juma (Foreign Affairs) and James Macharia (Transport) during the train ride, had nothing but praises for President Kenyatta’s flagship project.

“It was a comfortable four-hour ride. The SGR is key in cutting down transport costs, reducing pilferage and ensuring goods arrive faster to the hinterland. It will greatly reduce business costs,” Museveni indicated after embarking at Nairobi terminus.

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