, MOMBASA, Kenya, May 20 – Prime Minister Raila Odinga was in Mombasa on Sunday where he unveiled the Orange Democratic Movement “Reloaded campaigns” at the Likoni grounds.
The premier cautioned Kenyans to vote wisely in the coming polls to ensure that the leadership of the country was secured in the hands of reformists.
He warned coastal resident that their threats to stay out of the coming polls were retrogressive to the cause of change because non reformist leaders could capitalise on the voter apathy to retain power.
Odinga reminded the residents that the coming general elections gave Kenyans an opportunity to hand power to the crop of leaders they wanted to push the country to the new dispensation.
He said Kenyans suffered in the hands of successive oppressive regimes even after the end of colonial era but expressed optimism that the new Constitution could turn around the governance structures under the devolved system.
The Premier who was accompanied by his wife Ida Odinga reiterated his commitment to convene a coast leader’s conference to deliberate on challenges affecting the local community including the grievances of the Mombasa Republican Council.
Odinga acknowledged that some communities in the country still bore the brunt of the historical injustices that were committed in the past and promised to offer lasting solutions to the problem.
He dismissed a section of leaders who have lately expressed interest on the issue saying their intentions were hypocritical as some of them contributed to the problems afflicting the people of the region.
“Others will come pretending that they can now solve your problems yet they were the very cause of the misery bedeviling the people from coast,” the premier said.
The premier also asked the major shipment companies at the Mombasa port to let local business entities undertake other menial jobs at the docks.
He regretted that some companies had taken odd jobs including the functions of clearing and forwarding agents at the expense of locals.
Odinga said the squatters’ problem at the coast could no longer be ignored under the new dispensation and promised to amicably resolve the historical injustices under his leadership.
Leaders from the region backed the premier’s declaration to facilitate talks with the MRC but rejected a recent proposal by a section of politicians to table the issue in Parliament.
At least 30 Members of Parliament among them Seven Cabinet Ministers accompanied the Premier during his two-day tour of the coastal town.