Two-horse race for Mombasa top seat as Wiper bides its time
With Mvita MP Abdulswamad Nassir having bagged the ODM ticket for Mombasa governorship, against rival Suleiman Shahbal, the bid to succeed Hassan Joho is now a two-horse race between Nassir and ex-Mombasa senator Hassan Omar.
However, Wiper Democratic Movement is yet to decide on whom to support between former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko and Kisauni MP Ali Mbogo.
The rivalry between Nassir and Omar is building up fast, with the latter using Shahbal’s political armoury against the Mvita legislator, whom they accuse of being “a State project to protect individuals’ businesses.”
Yesterday, a section of ODM Ward Reps in Mombasa welcomed Nassir’s nomination to succeed Joho.
They vowed to ensure he wins the governor's seat.
Speaking during a press conference at Treasury Square, the MCAs slammed Omar for calling Nassir a ‘project’. “Nassir is a project of the people. His competitors should brace for a tough duel,” said Athman Mwamiri (Likoni MCA).
Another MCA, Fatma Kushe, said ODM would sweep all elective seats in Mombasa. “We are confident that Nassir will form the next county government,” said Kushe.
The MCAs have vowed to conduct extensive campaigns for Nassir. “As ODM aspirants, we will prove to the rivals that no other party will be in the county assembly,” said Allan Katana (Majaoni MCA aspirant).
“Omar is a non-issue in the race; we will defeat him because Mombasa is an ODM stronghold,” said Tudor MCA Tobias Samba.
Plot to stifle the economy
On Sunday, UDA officials in Mombasa termed Nassir’s nomination as the ODM candidate a plot to stifle the region economically.
They said the Coast has suffered underdevelopment under ODM and urged the residents to reject ‘projects’.
“There is a deliberate plot to install leadership that will continue to stifle the economy of Mombasa. This is evident in the transfer of Port operations to Naivasha. Both President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga don’t care about the needs of the Mombasa people; that’s why they are installing a ‘project’ to protect themselves economically,” said Omar.
The UDA governor aspirant spoke in Nyali during a meeting with UDA aspirants. He said the outgoing governor wants to cling in power through the back door and would control Nassir.
“We ask Mombasa people to listen to us; we know your challenges; we know your plight; let’s join hands and reject political projects who just want to rule us. They have destroyed our economy. We must change the leadership,” said Omar.