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All eyes on Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi over new political outfit

By Nehemiah Okwemba and Patrick Beja | September 5th 2021


Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

All eyes are on Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi and the leadership of the newly-registered Pamoja Africa Alliance’s (PAA) plans to unveil a strategy to win support at the Coast.

Political analysts say Kingi must come up with a unifying ideology that can resonate with the coastal masses. They say the ideology should be acceptable to all upcountry voters in the region. 

Others say the new outfit could exploit apathy among ODM and Jubilee supporters to enable it negotiate with other parties.

“Restiveness in the big parties at the Coast, growing ‘Mijikenda nationalism and big financial support can enable Kingi’s movement to penetrate the region’s politics,” said Maimuna Mwidau, an analyst.

The Pamoja Africa Alliance, which is linked to Kingi, has already hit the ground running, opening offices in different parts of the Coast. Kingi has promised to launch it before the year ends.

PAA, which was unveiled just a few days ago, has already sparked divisions among the leadership at the Coast, with critics saying it will fizzle out like such past efforts.

Matuga MP Kassim Tandaza expressed fear that the new party was like a private entity and could turn out to be a briefcase party.

The Amani National Congress legislator advised Kingi to reach out to political leaders and the general population in Coast if he wanted them to embrace the party and achieve unity in the region. 

Endear leaders

He said the only option for Kingi was to endear the party idea to Coast leaders and residents so that it can get numbers to enable its leadership negotiate for power.

“I have talked to the Kilifi county political leadership and no one is aware of what PAA stands for. The idea is not inclusive and only Governor Kingi and Magarini MP Michael Kingi, who is his brother, know about the party,” he said.

Tandaza said because he has always advocated for unity of the Coast, and he was ready to call meetings in Kwale County for Kingi to explain to the people why he has formed the new party.

According to Tandaza, Kingi only expressed the intention to form a party with roots at the Coast at a meeting in Nyali a year ago but he clashed with his Mombasa counterpart Hassan Joho and nothing has been heard from him.

“Governor Kingi differed with Joho at the Nyali meeting as Joho rejected the idea. But we expected Kingi to meet us after that. He didn’t do that, making the party a private affair,” he said.

New offices

Yesterday, PAA officials said Kingi was in race to open the new party offices in at least 35 counties as required by law. Last Friday, Kingi met Kilifi MCAs to rally them behind the new outfit. 

Some ward representatives have vowed not to join the new outfit at the expense of ODM, which sponsored them to the county assembly.

“We went into the meeting to discuss development but the governor introduced an agenda about a new party, which is yet to be unveiled,” said Majority Leader Adamson Mwathethe.

Mwathethe said he would not betray ODM that sponsored him to the county assembly by supporting Kingi’s new outfit.

He said Kingi had not told them the agenda of the new party.

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