TOUNGUES WAGGING

Malombe plotting Kitui comeback with increased public appearances

Former Governor lost to Charity Ngilu in the 2017 elections

In Summary

•Leaders including a scholar Professor Kimuti Kiteme have asked Malombe to run for governor in 2022

 

Former Kitui Governor Julius Malombe at a past function in Kitui South in 2017
COMEBACK SCHEME: Former Kitui Governor Julius Malombe at a past function in Kitui South in 2017
Image: MUSEMBI NZENGU

 

Former Kitui Governor Julius Malombe is back in public limelight, a move that has sent tongues wagging over a possible scheme for a comeback in 2022.

Malombe has largely kept off public functions since losing to Charity Ngilu in the 2017 elections.

His first appearance came in March during the burial of former Kitui Maendeleo Ya Wanawake chair Kathini Mutia in Kalitini village in Mwingi Central.

Malombe told mourners he had deliberately decided not to comment on county affairs to allow Ngilu time to deliver on her promises.

He has since returned to Mwingi Central on several occasions, including a fundraiser at Ndia Mumo Secondary School.

During the event, leaders including Professor Kamuti Kiteme urged Malombe to seek reelection as Kitui governor in 2022.

Malombe avoided the politics but chose to express his displeasure with the manner in which Ngilu was running the affairs of the county government.

Last Sunday at a meeting in Kombu in Kitui West, Malombe sympathised with cunty government workers who went on strike to demand their July and August salaries.  The former governor said no employee's salary was delayed during his reign.

At another public meeting in Kitui South two weeks ago, Malombe wondered why Ngilu’s administration had not completed the construction of the Sh800 million Kangu Kangu water pipeline project which he had started.

The project is expected to provide water to about 100,000 residents.

Kitui politician Josephat Mulyungi on Thursday said it was obvious that Malombe was scheming his return as governor owing to his frequent visits.

“Malombe is making technical public appearances in Kitui so that he could remain relevant in Kitui politics. He would want to be the Wiper gubernatorial candidate for Kitui in 2022 because the Kalonzo Musyoka-led party has not settled on any candidate.

Mulyungi said Malombe did averagely well during his first term.

“Malombe was not a bad man. He performed in terms of development. His only problem is that he was an administrator and not a politician. He planned and executed development projects but failed to network politically,"  Mulyungi said.

Former Kitui Governor Julius Malombe and his successor Charity Ngilu at the Kitui High Court in 2018
COMEBACK SCHEME: Former Kitui Governor Julius Malombe and his successor Charity Ngilu at the Kitui High Court in 2018
Image: MUSEMBI NZENGU