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Joho: Why I deserve the ODM ticket

ODM leader Raila Odinga and Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho. [Omondi Onyango, Standard]

Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho has made a case for his candidacy to fly the ODM presidential flag next year.

In his application for the the party’s ticket, Joho argues that he has stood with party leader Raila Odinga, even during the mock swearing-in ceremony at Uhuru Park on January 30, 2018.

The governor submitted his application on Friday before the Orange party extended the deadline for applications.

The deputy party leader, while pitching his candidature in an application whose copy the Sunday Standard has seen, argued that he is best suited to fly the party’s flag in the next polls having grown from a young Turk in the party.

“Even in 2017, I spearheaded the Mombasa County ODM presidential campaigns. The overwhelming number of votes garnered by party leader from our county evince my efforts,” argues Joho in his application.

“I was also instrumental in our party leaders ’22-stop pwani tour’, which culminated in the mega rally at the Tononoka grounds where Raila was endorsed by the coastal region as its presidential candidate.”

Joho is serving his last term as governor. He said he has on numerous occasions in public and in closed-door meetings represented, articulated and defended the party’s stand on matters of national interest.

In his nine-page submission addressed to Catherine Mumma, the secretary of the party’s National Elections Board (NEB), he said most recently he led the Building Bridges initiative (BBI) sensitisation rallies in the Coast region and beyond.

He took credit for the warm reception of the BBI messaging in the region as demonstrated in the overwhelming response to pass the Constitution of Kenya (Amendment) Bill 2020.

“I am a charismatic leader with a countrywide support. My election, by the National Delegates Convention, to the position of ODM deputy party leader is a culmination of my long service, loyalty and commitment to the party,” he said.

Joho is expected to battle it out with Raila and Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya who has also shown interest in the party ticket in order to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta. 

Even though Raila is yet to publicly declare his interest to run for the presidency for a fifth time, Oparanya, who is also another deputy party leader, has confirmed his interest in the slot.

This comes even as Prof Mumma’s team last Wednesday announced the party’s decision to extend the deadline for submission of applications from February 26 to March 31, which will coincide with grassroots elections to restructure the party in readiness for next year’s polls.

The NEB is also yet to go public on who has so far applied for the vacancy, even as Mumma attributed the extension to the by-election in Matungu Constituency where Oparanya is leading the campaigns for ODM candidate David Were.

The party has mandated the aspirants to demonstrate their membership for the last three years, by stating the life member number. Another requirement is the party membership subscription and other contributions.

The application form also tasks the applicant to demonstrate their level of engagement in party affairs, with backing evidence at the branch, sub-branch and ward levels.

Joho, in his responses, indicated that as the deputy party leader in charge of political affairs, he has assisted and deputised Raila in steering the party.

“I have actively promoted party affairs in the national and regional fora. I have ensured that the Coast region remains steadfast in supporting the party and its leadership through continuous engagements with the coastal residents,” he said.

“I successfully delivered the majority of the votes from the coast region to the ODM party in both the 2013 and 2017 general elections.”

He said he organised and coordinated party events and campaigns across the country.

“I spearheaded the ODM [email protected] countrywide campaign and celebrations and successfully hosted the final ODM [email protected] rally in Mombasa,” Joho said.

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