, NAIROBI, Kenya Sep 30 – A majority of Kenyans (83.2pc) do not support the Mombasa Republican Council (MRC), according to a new opinion poll released on Sunday.
The survey conducted by CPS International shows that only 13.6 percent are in support of the criminal group while 2.6 percent are undecided.
The group’s Research Manager James Mureithi says only I9 percent of coast residents support the secession bid.
“It can be noted that it is coast province counties that had the highest support of the secession bid by MRC with a percentage of 19 percent. This is because it is the home ground of the MRC,” he said at the launch of the study.
84.6 percent of those polled said they do not support the secession advocated by the criminal group while only 12.9 percent supported the idea MRC is advocating to have Coast province separated from the rest of Kenya
MRC has said that they want to separate the Coast region from Kenya and create their own country. They argue that the present and past regimes have done too little to alleviate the poverty in their region.
Among the grievances of the Mombasa Republican Council is that the Coastal region has been marginalized in the areas of government services, economic growth and education and health services.
The poll also suggests that despite recording a 68 percent poverty level during the 2009 National Population Census, most of the residents in the six counties of the coastal region do not feel marginalised, while an average of 3 percent said they did not know if they were marginalised.
“It is possible to have someone who is living below the poverty index, but say they don’t feel marginalised. Because they have access to government services such as education and health services, that person will not say he is marginalised because of these four, he may be getting access to at least three,” Mureithi said when analyzing the study to journalists.
The study reveals that 57 percent of Kilifi residents do not feel marginalised while 41 percent do. In Lamu County, 55 percent feel they are not marginalised against 43 percent to who said they do.
58 percent of those sampled in Taita Taveta County said they were not marginalised against 40 percent. Tana River, Kwale and Mombasa Counties registered 52 percent, 53 percent and 62 percent for those who are not marginalised.
The poll was conducted between July and August through the use of questionnaires among 1,974 respondents in 25 counties.
“From the 25 counties sampled from the 8 provinces, 87 percent feel that MRC is influenced by politics, 9.6 percent do not associate it with politics and 3.4 are not sure,” Mureithi said.
The poll comes after the High Court overturned a government order banning the group.
85.6 percent of all respondents did not agree with the High Court ruling, 11.6 percent support the High Court ruling, while 2.5 percent were not sure whether they support the ruling.
CPS International, formerly trading as Gallup Africa in Kenya, is a market and social research company that dwells on detailed social, cultural, political, religious and economic state of affairs in Africa and how they affect various sectors of economy, politics, development and way of life in the continent.