Mombasa mayor earns new term
By Ngumbao Kithi
Mayor Ahmed Abubakar Mohdhar of Mombasa has been re-elected unopposed during a hurried election.His deputy John Mcharo also retained his position while several councillors were retained as committee chairmen.Mombasa Municipal Council has 44 councillors.
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The only loser in the polls was finance committee chairman Suleiman Gharib who was replaced with Councillor Maimuna Waziri.Mr Mohdhar said the unity in the mayoral polls in Mombasa was an example to be followed in the country.He said: "Mombasa being an ODM zone, the mayoral poll has shown how unity can make sure right candidates take up leadership in Kenya".Mayor’s pledgesMohdhar promised to upgrade the coastal city to the status of Dubai. "I have one vision! To help make Mombasa the Dubai of Kenya with adequate infrastructure and provision of services as priorities," the mayor said.Among his successes in the management of Mombasa, Mohdhar said council staff has received salaries without hiccups. He added: "I managed to buy five trucks to collect between 700 and 1,000 tonnes of garbage daily and now that you have retained me, I will buy four others to ensure all garbage is transported to Mwakirunge dumpsite".He said the council has put up streetlights in most town centres and Mombasa was headed to becoming the best municipality.Mohdhar’s challenger Mr Tawfiq Balala resigned as nominated councillor two weeks ago and his supporters sided with the mayor at the election that lasted less than five minutes.As strategy to stem rivalry, the council created six more committees and distributed them among councillors.The new committees include HIV and Aids, shipping, Lasdap, tourism, children and reforms.The mayor, however, shocked the public when he claimed that as a tradition, when opportunities arise, he would distribute positions equally to councillors to defuse tension and rather than allow open competition."Once positions arise, I will equally distribute them to my councillors. We want to ensure equality," he said.
Mombasa mayor councillors
|Mombasa Town Clerk Tubman Otieno (left) and newly-sworn in Mayor Abubakar Mohdhar at the Town Hall, Thursday.. [PHOTOs: Govedi Asutsa/STANDARD]|