Months after a bid by coastal leaders to form a regional political outfit hit a brick wall, it has emerged that Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya is scheming to form his own party.
Kahawa Tungu understands that the jubilee governor decided to go it alone after talks with county bosses Ali Hassan Joho (Mombasa) and Amason Kingi (Kilifi) hit a dead end.
The leaders had in April this year announced the commencement of unity talks geared towards the formation of a coast political party that will help them promote interests of the locals.
The revelations followed a meeting with President Uhuru Kenyatta at State House in Nairobi in March.
In the meeting, the Head of State is said to have promised the region that has been politically ignored for years despite its huge numbers a powerful position once the BBI Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill 2020 is passed.
Sources in the know claim that the President told the county chiefs that devolution is taking a political regional angle with political parties emerging as key bargaining tools at the national level, urging the coastal leaders not to be left behind.
There were claims, however, that the Head of State’s advisory to the three-county chiefs, was meant to neutralize ODM leader Raila Odinga’s influence in the coast and also block Deputy President William Ruto from making inroads in the region in favor of a One Kenya Alliance candidate.
One Kenya Alliance is comprised of party bosses Musalia Mudavadi (Amani National Congress), Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper), Moses Wetangula (Ford Kenya) and Gideon Moi of KANU.
Mudavadi, Kalonzo and Wetangula, who supported Raila’s 2017 presidential bid under the National Super Alliance (NASA), have ruled out any coalition negotiations to back the ODM leader in 2022.
Shortly after the State House meeting, Joho and Mvurya developed cold feet on the initiative to form a coastal party.
On the other hand, Kingi continued to push for the formation of the outfit but could not go far.
Mvurya, an ally of DP Ruto, sources in the know revealed to Weekly Citizen, now wants to form his own political party to primarily address his succession politics as his second and final term comes to an end next year.
The county chief apparently wants his deputy of nine years Fatuma Achani to succeed him.
The governor is afraid that Lunga Lunga Member of Parliament Khatib Mwashetani, who is an insider in Ruto’s camp, will automatically be picked as the first choice by the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party associated with the second in command.
He wants to ensure that his deputy and his allies are on the ballot in the 2022 polls.
It’s, however, not clear whether he will form the party from scratch or ‘purchase’ one.
The governor raised eyebrows when he missed a meeting convened by the DP in Kilifi a fortnight ago.
The DP was in the region for an economic regeneration forum.
The forum brought together legislators and professionals from the six counties in the Coast.
The meeting offered the local leaders a platform to outline the region’s economic plan with emphasis on tourism, maritime economy and land ownership challenges.
But even as the governor schemes to chart his own path, the Mwashetani and Lung’anzi Chai’s political camps are said to have made serious inroads. Critics say the 2022 political contest won’t be a walk in the park for the governor and his yet-to-be unveiled party.