Kilifi Governor Amason Kingi has downplayed the defection his deputy, Kenneth Kamto, from ODM to the Jubilee Party.
Mr Kingi, who together with Mombasa Governor Hassan Joho are ODM’s key lieutenants in the Coast, said the move by Mr Kamto to jump ship is inconsequential.
Mr Kamto decamped to Jubilee last weekend and was named Kilifi North MP Gideon Mung’aro’s running mate for the gubernatorial seat.
Mr Mung’aro, who was elected on an ODM ticket, is among Coast MPs who have shifted allegiance to Jubilee and has announced he will vie for Kilifi governor’s seat in the August polls.
Kilifi South MP Mustafa Iddi and Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya also quit ODM for Jubilee.
Mr Kingi said Wednesday that the leaders were coerced to shift to Jubilee.
In an interview with the Nation in Kilifi Town, Mr Kingi said Jubilee had hatched plans to weaken ODM which bagged most of the seats in the region in the 2013 elections.
“I know Jubilee Party is on a shopping spree in Kilifi County so that they can weaken the opposition, but they must be prepared for a shock of their life.
“Contrary to what they think, ODM is very strong in Kilifi and that is the shock that awaits them on August 8,” said Mr Kingi said.
Mr Kingi said he does not regret Mr Kamto’s departure from ODM saying he had concentrated his efforts in undermining his government but failed.
“The line-up that was announced in Rabai will not shake ODM and I can assure you that we shall triumph against them in the August polls. The ideologies that made people vote for ODM in 2013 are still the same. People have not changed and they are waiting for them [at] the ballot,” said Mr Kingi.
Mr Kingi was upbeat of his re-election due to his “huge” development record that has changed lives.
“I know that our first years were plagued by many challenges including setting up of infrastructure to start the county governments but we worked hard to ensure we touch every life in the county.
“We have implemented several projects in several sectors that in their wake have led to development,” the governor said.
He said his administration has focused on health, education, agriculture and women and youth empowerment.