Showdown and chaos has ensued in Mombasa after the incumbent Mombasa governor Hassan Joho unveiled his preferred successor with the battle pitting Mvita MP Abdulswamad Shariff and Business mogul Suleiman Shahbal heating up.
Joho has endorsed Mvita MP Abdulswamad Shariff as his successor in the upcoming 2022 general election and settled on the MP while making his address at the Mombasa County Assembly grounds during the Governor’s annual Christmas tree lighting ceremony on Saturday, December 19.
Joho who is the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) Deputy Party leader was under pressure to settle on either Abdulswamad or businessman Suleiman Shahbal who are locked up in an epic battle.
“We’ll come here to support aspirants and help them advance their wishes. Now I’m telling you (Mombasa residents) that Abdulswamad Shariff wants to succeed me and he will be the governor,” Joho declared.
“The journey has started and we have shown you the way. It is now up to you (Mombasa residents) to follow the path we have set,” added the governor, who is serving his second and final term.
Mombasa gubernatorial aspirant Abdulswamad Nassir alongside ODM party leader Raila Odinga and Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho during a Consultative Forum at Sheikh Zayed Hall in Mombasa on Sunday, December 19, 2021
The announcement apparently caught Abdulswamad who also doubles as the National Assembly’s Chairperson of the Public Investments Committee by surprise but rose to acknowledge the endorsement.
“The first invite as the chief guest for next year’s governor’s Christmas tree lighting ceremony shall be Joho. I have officially invited you in advance,” the MP appreciated in return.
“County Chief Officers and Ward Administrator present, please take note and make sure that it is actualized,” he added amid cheers and applause from the gathering that received the news well.
Among those present were Mombasa Senator Mohamed Faki, Likoni MP Mishi Mboko, and his Jomvu counterpart Badi Twalib who assured Joho that they were fully behind Abdulswamad in the 2022 contest.
Tycoon Shahbal and his rival Abdulswamad both aspire to vie via an ODM party ticket. Shahbal recently crossed over from Jubilee Party in June 2021 to ODM, four years after he lost the gubernatorial election to Joho in 2017 and is now eyeing the same seat, paving the way for a showdown with Abdulswamad.
The duo has been keen on securing the incumbent governor’s and ODM party leader Raila Odinga’s blessings. In July 2021 while on a tour in Mombasa, Raila resisted pressure to endorse either of the two.
“I am a father to all. The governorship decision is yours. You will decide who will become governor,” Raila told the crowd, adding that the ODM party will conduct free and fair nominations to determine Joho’s successor at the end of his current term in 2022.
Sourced from Kenya leo