In Summary
  • Mr Joho has in the past been a critic of President Kenyatta but he swallowed his pride and expressed interest in working with him.
  • Mr Joho, who has been in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, was expected back in the country on Wednesday.
  • Most of the elected leaders at the coast have of late extended an olive branch to Mr William Ruto.

Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho appears isolated as political re-alignments heighten at the coast following truce between President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga.

The changing political wave at the coast is expected to dominate President Uhuru Kenyatta’s visit to Mombasa on Thursday when he opens the first phase of the Sh11 billion Dongo-Kundu bypass.

Mr Joho has in the past been a critic of President Kenyatta but he swallowed his pride and expressed interest in working with him following the March 9 political deal.
Observers are watching today's events, when President Kenyatta visits Mombasa for the first time after the handshake. Prior to the handshake, President Kenyatta had asked Mr Joho to keep off his events.

POLITICAL ALLIES
Mr Joho, who has been in Mecca, Saudi Arabia, was expected back in the country on Wednesday, with his handlers insisting that he will be there to welcome the Head of State.

Mr Joho’s former close political allies have deserted him, placing his bid for the 2022 presidency in limbo even before the campaigns start.

The governor, who enjoyed the support of nearly all MPs from the six coast counties and played a major role in the election of a number of them, is now seem to have only Likoni MP Mishi Mboko, Mombasa Woman Representative Aisha Hussein, and Mvita MP Abdulswamad Nassir on his side.

Most of the elected leaders at the coast have of late extended an olive branch to Mr Ruto, turning out to welcome him wherever he is in the region and praising him for being "development conscious."

POLITICAL KINGPIN
The move has shaken the ODM deputy leader's stranglehold in the six Coast counties where he was regarded as political kingpin and ‘sultan.’ Most of Mr Joho’s allies, including Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi, have embraced Mr Ruto.

Others are Msambweni’s Suleiman Dori, the chairman of the Coast Parliamentary Group and Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa, who have said they will campaign for Mr Ruto.

In Kilifi, where ODM scooped all the elective seats, leaving only left three MCA slots to Kadu Asili and independent candidates. Kilifi South MP Owen Baya is among those who have since joined Mr Ruto camp and has taken issue with his party threats to punish them.

Although Mombasa Senator Mohammed Faki is believed to be in Mr Joho’s camp, he is among leaders who joined Mr Ruto during his recent tour.

Mr Joho is also not assured of Changamwe MP Omar Mwinyi’s support following differences over the seat before the last polls. Kisauni MP Ali Mbogo, Mohammed Ali (Nyali) and Badi Twalib (Jomvu) have also embraced Mr Ruto.

JUBILEE POINTMAN
In Kwale, all the four MPs, Mr Dori (Msambweni), Kassim Tandaza (Matuga), Benjamin Tayari (Kinango) and Khatib Mwashetani (Lunga- Lunga) are leading Mr Ruto’s campaigns. The MPs have joined Governor Salim Mvurya, who is Jubilee’s point-man in the region.

“We are the ones who led our people to the opposition and we are going to tell them to support the leader who is capable of clinching the top seat come 2022,” said Mr Dori.

In Kwale, Mr Joho who recently indicated he could join hands with Kanu boss Gideon Moi in his quest for the presidency is left with Woman Rep Zulekha Juma, who was elected on an ODM ticket, and some MCAs.

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