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Defection rocks Jubilee as Mombasa politician, Suleiman Shabal decamps to ODM party

Jubilee party politician Suleiman Shahbal has ditched the President Uhuru Kenyatta’s camp and rejoined the Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party ahead of 2022 general elections.

Shahbal, who was trounced by Ali Hassan Joho in 2017 when he vied for the Mombasa governorship on a Jubilee Party ticket, is said to be looking forward to succeeding Joho as the Mombasa governor in the 2022 polls.

The Mombasa based businessman joining Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) party is set to create a battlefield between himself and Mvita Member of Parliament Abdulswamad Shariff Nassir, for the party ticket to vie for the Mombasa governorship.

While announcing his decision to rejoin ODM, Shahbal vowed to back the former prime minister should he unveil his bid to vie for the 2022 presidency.

“In 2022, we have two politics. At the national level, we have no one else other than Baba (Raila Odinga) because he has suffered for the people of Kenya,” Shahbal said.

He was initially an ODM member before quitting the party to join Jubilee in 2017 general election.

Mvita MP Abdulswaamad had indirectly hit at the businessman, cautioning Mombasa residents against giving a chance to politicians who are synonymous with party-hopping and politics of deceit.

“When we are close to the elections you will see the political cheats. They will lie to you that they will deliver to you. When elections are over you will never see them,” Abdulswamad said.

Shahbal and Joho have lately become close allies, and the former is expected to capitalise on the friendship to win the gubernatorial seat in the coming vote.

Joho had announced his bid to vie for the presidency on the ODM ticket despite the murmurs on the possibility of Raila Odinga trying his luck for the umpteenth time.

The governor had hinted at plans to ditch ODM to come up with a coastal region party that would be used as the vehicle to state house in 2022.

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    Written by Kennedy Omondi

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