Former Garissa county assembly minority leader and Abakaile MCA Mohamed Sheikh Ali who lost his seat through a court petition and was re-elected early this month has attributed his retention of the seat to the handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition leader Raila Odinga.
The seat was declared vacant after bruising court battle that was later challenged at the court of appeal in vain forcing voters to go back to the polls.
Ali commonly known as Amin comp vied on an ODM ticket and garnered 1,953 against his closet challenger Abdiwahab Sheikh of Jubilee who manage 1,812 votes.
Speaking after being sworn-in today, Ali said that the handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga played a crucial role in him retaining his seat.
His sentiments were echoed by the assembly’s majority leader Mohamed Gabow of Jubilee who said it is a toll order seeking a fresh mandate from the people ‘but you managed because of the handshake.’
Hundreds of his supporters jammed the assembly’s public gallery while others danced outside chambers.
“I will ensure that our government provides decent healthcare, schools and clean and adequate water for all. This is what my leadership endeavors,” Ali told his jubilant supporters.
Governor Ali Korane’s role in the just concluded by-election became evident during the swearing ceremony with senior county official in attendance.
Ali appreciated Governor for what he termed as his ‘wonderful work’ done in the ward despite the lack of substantive local representation.
In Garissa and North Eastern region in general clans play a major determining factor in any elections with little consideration to party affiliations.
Governor Korane enjoys massive supports at the assembly.
By Jacob Songok