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GRASSROOTS UNITY

Ex-senator to launch Patanisha Mashinani to seal political divides

Handshake and Embrace Movement are meant to cool political temperatures and unite Kenyans, but do not reach the grassroots

In Summary

• Former nominated senator says Embrace and the handshake are ineffective at the grassroots, 'they only benefit those in leadership positions'.

• Patanisha Mashinani is meant to unite those who fought each other due to political affiliation. 

Former Nominated Senator Emma Mbura
REACHING THE GRASSROOTS LEVEL: Former Nominated Senator Emma Mbura
Image: BRIAN OTIENO

Former nominated Senator Emma Mbura is set to launch a peace and unity initiative to end political animosity at the grassroots.

She said the Embrace Movement and the handshake have only worked among those in leadership positions but failed to benefit people at the grassroots because their meetings are mainly in hotels.

The Patanisha Mashinani drive will, therefore, benefit all wananchi, she said.

“Meeting at Serena Hotel, Whitesands Hotel or Kenya School of Government is good, but nobody from the grassroots will come because they will not have even that fare to come,” she said.

“That's why we are coming up with this Patanisha Mashinani initiative which will meet Kadzo, Omondi, Mwachai, Mwangi at Junda and Mburukenge slums where they live."

She said the initiative will complement the Embrace and handshake drives.

“Those at the grassroots are still bitter with each other and cannot borrow salt and onions from each other like they used to before because of the political wars,” Mbura said.

“It is good that the handshake and Embrace were formed but they forgot the critical aspect of politics — the people at the grassroots.” 

She said people at the grassroots are mostly used by politicians to achieve their goals and are later dumped.

Patanisha Mashinani will bring on board administrators, including chiefs, deputy county commissioners, Nyumba Kumi ambassadors, community policing committee members and other leaders.

Mbura has been advocating peace and harmony at the Coast through her Women Power Movement. The movement has been reaching out to women through economic projects that promote sustainable livelihoods so they get income.

This comes at a time when Embrace, launched in Mombasa four months ago, is set for another meeting in Tononoka Grounds.

The Embrace leadership in Mombasa includes Likoni MP Mishi Mboko, Woman Representative Asha Hussein and MCA Fatma Kushe.

Mbura said that most of the time the leaders are not accessible and rarely have free time to mingle with residents.

“The only person who may be meeting with residents is Kushe, who is at least closer to the people at the grassroots than the others. But she alone cannot meet all the people. She needs help,” she said.

(Edited by R.Wamochie)