• Baya said it's sad the governor "has the audacity" to claim the region is not poor, as he and his family have amassed wealth.
• He said Joho has alienated the region and now his only tribe is the tribe of the rich, he's not really Mijikenda who must fight for themselves.
Kilifi North MP Owen Baya on Friday scoffed at Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho's remarks that the Coast region is not poor.
Baya said Joho’s comments were misplaced and could contribute to denying the region government development projects.
Speaking in Kilifi, Baya criticised Joho for suggesting that poverty is no longer an issue at the Coast.
For the region to be lifted out of poverty, leaders must accept that the region is poor, the MP said.
“Joho is a leader we respect because as a region we have always thought he can be trusted with fronting the issues bedevilling the region but his remarks in Taita Taveta yesterday [Thursday] made me to lose that respect," Baya said.
"Just because he is rich doesn't mean everyone is rich. If he doesn't see poverty, let him come. I'll take him to Ganze and Magarini to see poverty first-hand. We have Tana River where people reel from poverty due to the devastating effects of floods,” the MP said.
We always thought Joho was one of us but now we know he isn't a Mijikenda but his tribe is the tribe of the rich. We will come together as the Mijikenda to fight for ourselves.Kilifi North MP Owen Baya
Joho was commenting on the contentious county revenue sharing formula, which he supported. It would reduce fundings to poorer counties, including those at the Coast.
The MP said it is sad the governor "has the audacity" to claim the region is not poor just because he and his family have amassed wealth.
"Joho has several lavish houses in Nyali. He lives in Vipingo and has high-end estates in Malindi and this is what makes him think everyone is rich,” Baya said.
The MP asked why Joho has "suddenly fallen silent" on the Kenya Ports Authority issue. It was an apparent reference to the national government directive that virtually all cargo arriving in Mombasa be transported by the SGR to the Inland Container Depot in Naivasha for clearance.
Joho initially had opposed the directive, saying it would hurt Mombasa's economy.
“He has been blindfolded by [ODM leader] Raila Odinga. He does not see any problem with the port because he gets tenders at the port. Raila cannot defend the port because the government is putting up a port at his Kisumu backyard,” Baya said.
Joho has alienated the region and now his only tribe is the rich, he said.
“We always thought he was one of our own but we now know he is not a Mijikenda but his tribe is the tribe of the rich. We will come together as the Mijikenda to fight for ourselves,”Baya said.
Joho on Thursday accompanied Raila on a tour of Taita Taveta where he addressed a gathering.
(Edited by V. Graham)