Mom­basa big­wigs, cash to in­flu­ence 2017 elec­tions, say an­a­lysts

Has­san Joho, Hezron Awiti and Has­san Omar are among top politi­cians sought af­ter by as­pi­rants who will be go­ing for the MP and MCA posts

The Star (Kenya) - - Front Page - CHARLES MGHENYI @CharlesMghenyi

Re­sources, one’s political party and the in­flu­ence of Mom­basa political big­wigs will play a cru­cial role in de­ter­min­ing who will be elected in Mom­basa next year.

Political an­a­lysts say many as­pi­rants are seek­ing the sup­port of lo­cal political big­wigs, en­dorse­ment from par­ties and enough re­sources for their cam­paigns.

Mom­basa Gover­nor Has­san Joho, Nyali MP Hezron Awiti and Se­na­tor Has­san Omar are among top politi­cians sought af­ter by as­pi­rants who will be go­ing for the MP and MCA posts. Joho com­mands au­thor­ity in ODM, whereas Awiti and Omar lead the Wiper Party.


Political an­a­lyst Yusuf Abubakar said the Ju­bilee Party can­not be over­ruled be­cause of the early cam­paign by Pres­i­dent Uhuru Keny­atta’s foot soldiers.

“National pol­i­tics will play a cru­cial role at the county and con­stituency level,” he said.

“If Cord dis­in­te­grates due to a pres­i­den­tial flag­bearer, Ju­bilee might clinch more seats in Mom­basa and Coast at large.”

A fierce political battle is ex­pected at the con­stituency level as the six posts in Mom­basa have at­tracted an av­er­age of eight can­di­dates each.

ODM, Wiper and Ju­bilee are poised to share the Mvita, Kisauni, Changamwe, Jomvu, Likoni and Nyali seats, de­pend­ing on their cam­paign strate­gies and the mo­bilised re­sources, Abubakar said.

Taita Taveta Univer­sity Col­lege prin­ci­pal Prof Ha­madi Boga said, “It is com­mon sense that a political party that has a huge fol­low­ing and a can­di­date’s re­sources will help get lead­ers elected.”

New­com­ers in pol­i­tics are fight­ing to get the at­ten­tion of the elec­torates and big politi­cians.


But in­cum­bents are also work­ing tire­lessly to en­sure they ap­pease the elec­torates who voted for them in the March 4, 2013, gen­eral elec­tion by im­ple­ment­ing projects, as they want to be re­elected.

In Kisauni, Joho’s ally MP Rashid Bedz­imba, who has three op­po­nents so far, is con­fi­dent he will win.

The Nyali seat is up for grabs af­ter Awiti de­clared he will run for gover­nor, com­pli­cat­ing Omar’s bid as they are both from Wiper.

More than 12 as­pi­rants have launched in­ten­sive cam­paigns for the seat, among them Mom­basa as­sem­bly speaker Thad­deus Ra­jwayi, KTN jour­nal­ist Mo­hamed Ali, busi­ness­men Saidi Ab­d­halla (Saido), Simon Adalla, Chrispi­nus Waithaka, Mark Ouma and Asharaf Bayusuf.

Saido, Ali and Ra­jwayi are seek­ing ODM en­dorse­ment, Adalla and Ouma want to run on the Wiper ticket and Bayusuf wants the Ju­bilee ticket.

“In Nyali, the battle is ex­pected to be be­tween Wiper and ODM. This is due to the fact that Cord, as a coali­tion, is very strong in the re­gion and the cur­rent MP is from Wiper,” Abubakar said.

In Mvita, the battle will be be­tween Ju­bilee and ODM be­cause MP Ab­dul­swa­mad Nas­sir (ODM) will be con­test­ing against Mo­hamed Tenge.

The same will be wit­nessed in Likoni, where the cur­rent MP Ma­soud Mwahima, who de­camped to the Ju­bilee Party, will be fac­ing woman rep­re­sen­ta­tive Mishi Mboko and Suleiman Shakombo (ODM), both fronted by Joho.

In Jomvu and Changamwe, the race will be be­tween ODM and Wiper, but a Ju­bilee can­di­date stands a chance if Cord fails to play its cards well, Abubakar said.


Mom­basa Gover­nor Has­san Joho and Kisauni MP Rashid Bedz­imba dur­ing a tour of some of the CDF projects in Kisauni, Mom­basa, on Au­gust 10

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