Wiper party officials have termed the former Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko a traitor after defecting to Kenya Kwanza Alliance on Saturday.
Mr Sonko ditched the Kalonzo Musyoka political outfit for Deputy President William Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) citing frustrations by powerful individuals who he said were out to stop his gubernatorial bid.
Mr Sonko said he had been promised a Cabinet Secretary in the National Government, three Principal Secretaries and four Ambassadorial positions in a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Ruto-led alliance.
But Mombasa Wiper officials said Mr Sonko only joined Wiper party recently to vie for the Mombasa gubernatorial seat to shield himself from his political woes that led to his impeachment in Nairobi in 2020.
“All this time he was supporting DP Ruto and UDA but he has decided to come out openly. However, we wish him all the best. Wiper will remain in Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition and we have decided to support ODM gubernatorial candidate Abdulswamad Nassir. We don’t have a candidate in Mombasa,” said Sheikh Omar Twaha, Wiper Mombasa chairman.
He said Wiper will campaign for Mr Nassir and Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Coalition presidential candidate Raila Odinga. Sheikh Twaha further urged Wiper supporters to remain calm.
However, he acknowledged that the Musyoka-led outfit suffered a major blow following Mr Sonko’s defection.
“We had hoped to have a Wiper governor. The only blow is that we don’t have a gubernatorial candidate. But his defection is not a blow because he was not in Wiper, he just joined us recently to shield himself from his political woes and we really helped him,” he said.
Mr Twaha said it is disheartening that Wiper had to beg Kisauni MP Ali Mbogo to shelve his gubernatorial ambition for the sake of Mr Sonko who has decided to desert them at their hour of need.
Wiper is now trying to woo Mr Mbogo to remain in the outfit. This is after Mr Sonko said he is defecting with his running mate who has been assured political goodies once Dr Ruto wins the August 9 polls.
“We are talking to him, although Sonko said he is leaving with him, the MP is yet to officially issue a statement on his next political move. We just hope Mr Mbogo will stick to Wiper but if he joins the former Nairobi Governor we wish him all the best,” he said.
Meanwhile, Kamba leaders led by Kitui Governor Charity Ngilu, have denounced Mr Sonko for supporting DP Ruto.
Ms Ngilu who spoke at the Akamba handcraft in Changamwe while campaigning for Mr Odinga, said Kamba community living in Mombasa will support Mr Nassir.
“We are all in Azimio. Our Mombasa governor is ODM but we want nominations at the County Assembly. You must go door to door campaigning for Mr Odinga and Mr Nassir,” said Ms Ngilu.
At the same time, the Mombasa ODM Gubernatorial candidate scoffed off at Mr Sonko for signing a pact with UDA candidate Mr Omar to support his bid.
Mr Sonko announced that he has dropped his bid to support Mr Omar for the Mombasa governor race where he has been assured three chief executive officers and three chief officers. In Nairobi, he will also get two county executive officers and three chief officers.
“Mombasa is not for sale. I will not sign a pact with any individual. But some individuals have approached me in exchange of political positions to support my bid but I refused. My only pact is with the people of Mombasa. Even if they congregate, they will not win the August 9 polls. I want to tell those who keep abusing me that I will be their governor,” he said.
Mr Nassir’s running mate, Mr Francis Thoya, urged residents to denounce leaders dividing them along ethnic lines.