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October 22, 2017

Just Who Is Nelson Marwa?

Nelson Marwa. Photo/File
Nelson Marwa. Photo/File

Nelson Marwa, the outspoken and often controversial Coast regional coordinator, is a man who has rubbed shoulders wrongly with the most powerful politicians from his region. Ironically, these are the same leaders he is supposed to work with to provide security.

 After 24 years of rising through the ranks from a junior civil servant, to the all powerful security coordinator, there have been calls to have him appointed to the National Police Service as the Inspector General due to his no-nonsense approach to matters security.

Marwa, who has three master's degrees, was born in Kuria, Migori county, and grew up in Tanzania and Uganda.

The son of a missionary started off as a junior district officer in Nyeri and has worked in several parts of the country, including Kinango, Rift Valley, and Mombasa.

Before his recent promotion, shortly before the Malindi by-election, Marwa was the Mombasa county commissioner, a position he held since the promulgation of the new constitution in 2010.

Early this year, he pledged to the President, as a county commissioner, he would destroy drug dens in Mombasa and arrest barons behind the trade. He later compiled a report saying none of the drug barons was arrested in his campaign, but drug addicts would be treated in rehabilitation centres within Mombasa.

Marwa is not afraid to step on people’s toes, especially when he strongly believes he is right. A case in point is when he first differed with Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho.  He said their differences were on matters principle. Marwa said as an educated man, he is allowed to take different opinions.

He is respected by both friends and foe for having cracked down on extremism and jihadist ideologies that threatened to disrupt peace in the Coast.

In every media conference, he reminds journalists he constantly tunes in to local stations and reads papers to update himself on current issues.

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