Nyali MP and Mombasa gubernatorial aspirant Hezron Awiti has announced his defection from Wiper Democratic Movement, where he was the national treasurer, but he is undecided which party to join.
Mr Awiti’s move comes after Wiper party aspirants and other officials in Mombasa endorsed Secretary-General Hassan Omar to unseat embattled ODM Governor Hassan Joho.
The MP and Mr Hassan had been engaged in a vicious battle to be Wiper’s flagbearer for the top county seat and his move now leaves Mr Hassan as the only Wiper candidate.
Mr Hassan is a key ally of Wiper party leader Kalonzo Musyoka and has always been seen as the favourite.
Mr Awiti, however, insisted that he is still in the race with unconfirmed reports indicating he could be headed to Kadu-Asili.
If Mr Awiti makes good his plans to contest for the Mombasa gubernatorial seat, he is likely to square it out with ODM’s Joho, Mr Hassan (Wiper) and Jubilee Party’s Suleiman Shahbal.
Mr Joho is currently unchallenged for the ODM ticket while Mr Shahbal has since been endorsed by Jubilee.
Mr Awiti said he would unveil his new party in a week.
“My team is Nairobi consulting with a number of parties,” Mr Awiti said, adding that he had received offers from different parties.
He added: “The time has come for me to tell my supporters the direction to go. I wish to state that I have resigned from this day from Wiper party.”
He said he will submit his resignation letter to Mr Musyoka and that he has no issue with Mr Hassan whom he described as his “son”.
“I have no issue with Hassan Omar. He is just like any politician with political ambition. I also have no issue with Suleiman Shahbal. My objective is to remove Hassan Ali Joho and create an inclusive government,” he said.
He said he was still considering whether to support the Jubilee or Nasa Presidential candidate.
“For now I am not sure which presidential candidate to support. I have to dialogue with my supporters,” said Mr Awiti.
Mr Awiti says he will also name his running mate after consulting widely with his advisors and supporters.
He also dismissed two opinion polls by Infotrak and Tifa, which ranked his popularity at below two per cent in the race.
The Nyali MP also declined to comment on Mr Joho’s alleged fake KCSE certificate scam.
“I am not the CID responsible in investigating people. Ask CID about Mr Hassan Joho,” he added.
He also dogged answering claims that he is not a holder of a university degree, a requirement to contest for the position of governor.
“I have stated before about my qualifications. You can go and do a search on the internet. I am qualified to be Mombasa Governor,” said Mr Awiti.