Reuben Mwambingu @reubenmwambingu
Leaders from Coast and Western regions must work towards uniting the two areas with the rest of the country after a bruising political period last year, Senate Speaker Ken Lusaka has said.
Saying the two regions were major Opposition bases in the 2017 elections, the Speaker reiterated the need for political reconciliation to ensure they are not left behind in terms of development and national cohesion.
He said this was not the time for political battles. His remarks come in the wake of a push by Ford Kenya leader Moses Wetang’ula and his ANC counterpart Musalia Mudavadi to have the Western region rally behind one of their own in 2022 General Election.
“There is no way we can realise development with fresh political wounds. We need to reconcile and join hands with the rest of the country,” said Lusaka.
The Speaker made the remarks in Malindi at the weekend when he represented Deputy President William Ruto in a fundraiser for Mwangaza Women Group.
The event, spearheaded by Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa, raised Sh7.4 million. Lusaka challenged leaders to emulate President Uhuru Kenyatta and Nasa leader Raila Odinga’s pledge to unite the country.
He said the funds raised would steer the women toward self-reliance to ensure “a progressive society and strengthens the economic outlook”. During the event both Jubilee and Nasa-allied leaders supported calls for reconciliation and declared support for Ruto’s 2022 presidential bid.
They included Jumwa, Nominated Senator Christine Zawadi and Magarini MP Michael Kingi and several members of County Assembly. Jumwa said Ruto was best placed to become the next President given his track record.
She also lauded the Jubilee administration for incorporating Coast leaders in the government despite the region supporting the Opposition in last year’s elections.
She cited Lands Chief Administrative Secretary Gideon Mung’aro, Kenyan envoy in Tanzania Dan Kazungu and Former CS Kazungu Kambi, now chairman, Coast Development Authority, as leaders who benefitted from State appointments.