Garissa Senator Yusuf Haji and Jubilee governor candidate Ali Korane on Saturday urged residents to vote out Governor Nathif Jama for “grossly mismanaging the county”.
They said the county cannot afford to reelect Jama for another five years. Haji, who is defending his seat, and Korane spoke in Garissa town, after they were endorsed by 2,000 Abasame elders and professionals.
But Jama dismissed their accusations as “neither here nor there”.
“My opponents have been engaging in a smear campaign that will take them nowhere. All I can tell them is that what I’ve done is there for everyone to see. Let’s meet at the ballot,” he said.
Haji accused Jama of failing to tame corruption, which he blamed for the county’s “lack of development” under the Jama administration.
“We aren’t opposing Nathif for the sake of it. I don’t have anything personal against him. As a respected elder and a leader of this county, I can say without any fear of contradiction that our governor has failed us big-time,” he said.
“That’s why we want to give our people direction on how they should vote so that we save our county from poor leadership.
“Today, contractors who offered services to the county way back in 2013 are still lamenting because they have not been paid. You wonder where our billions are.”
Haji said services in all subcounties have virtually collapsed due to mismanagement. He told residents to back Korane, describing him as a trustworthy workaholic and an experienced leader.
Korane, who narrowly lost to Jama in 2013, said the county has received Sh30 billion from the National Treasury in the last four years but cannot account for it.
He said no meaningful development has been initiated, adding that the county government has not even built its headquarters.
Korane added that he will share resources equitably among the subcounties because “a more-than-Sh7-billion budget for the county is enough to do a lot if utilised properly”.
He added, “If I’m elected, God willing, I’ll ensure our offices are always open for our people so they can get services they need.”
Inter-Governmental Authority on Development engineer Mahbub Maalim said Korane is an experienced administrator with what it takes to take Garissa forward.
Maalim, who was a staunch Jama supporter in 2013, criticised the incumbent for failing residents, “especially in key sectors such as water and health”.
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