CS Balala to vie for Mombasa governorship in 2017?
04 July 2016, 11:28
Mombasa - Divisions have emerged between Mombasa Jubilee politician Suleiman Shahbal supporters and Tourism Cabinet Secretary Najib Balala over who should be the Jubilee Alliance party (JAP) gubernatorial candidate in the 2017 elections.
This was after section of Jubilee supporters proposed the giant coalition to give a direct nomination ticket to Tourism CS, Najib Balala to vie for the Governor’s seat on a Jubilee ticket in 2017 while others are supporting the heavyweight businessman, Suleiman Shahbal.
Shahbal has been holding meetings with party supporters in a bid to stem emerging cracks within the coalition in Mombasa but his political ambition has been threatened by the entrance of CS Balala who is a close ally to President Uhuru Kenyatta.
At the weekend, he declared that he is ready to vie the Jubilee ticket in the forthcoming race for Mombasa governorship.
Addressing the public at an Iftar dinner organized by the ‘Warembo na Uhuru’ political caucus at the weekend in Mombasa‘s Mvita constituency, Shahbal indicated that he is ready to work with Balala so that Jubilee can take over the leadership of Mombasa.
“Jubilee is a big coalition. This is one Jubilee family. If we join hands we will be stronger. I will work with anyone who comes. The field is open for anyone. We shall face off as one family,” said Shahbal.
Jubilee branch chair, Ali Mwatsahu and Ibrahim ‘Babangida’ Khamis are leading the clamour for Balala to be given a direct nomination.
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Some of the supporters are now asking President Uhuru Kenyatta who is the Jubilee coalition leader to appoint Balala the Jubilee flag bearer in Mombasa to avoid divisions ahead of the next polls.
Balala and Uhuru are close political allies while Shahbal is a member of the Jubilee steering committee in Mombasa.
Mwatsahu said there must be consensus adding that ‘the Jubilee family decides who gets what.’
“We must sit down and decide who will be the Jubilee flag bearer in Mombasa. Many want to vie for different posts, including that of Governor,” said Mwatsahu.
This attracted heavy criticism from Shahbal’s supporters who attended the iftar dinner including TNA Mombasa chair Matano Chengo, Nyali Aspirant Yasir Noor, his Mvita counterpart Mohamed Tenge and Jubilee Administrator Janet Mbete.
“Shahbal wants to be Governor. If anyone else wants to be Governor on a Jubilee ticket, let them face off with Shahbal. We will not allow political power brokers to divide our family,” said Chengo.
He said Warembo na Uhuru will be conducting door-to-door campaigns in the County to ensure the President is re-elected for a second term in 2017.
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