Hundreds of women on Sunday poured onto the streets of Mombasa to protest utterances that Nairobi Senator Mike Sonko made during a rally addressed by President Uhuru Kenyatta on Saturday.
Mombasa Woman Representative Mishi Juma Mboko led the demonstration that started from Kona Mbaya to Liverpool grounds in Shelly Beach.
The protesters gave Mr Sonko seven days to apologise to the women in Mombasa or face unspecified consequences.
Ms Mboko challenged Mr Sonko to seek election in Mombasa “if he is man enough”, promising to floor him.
“Kama Sonko anajisikia mwanamume na ametosha, tunamwaambia aje atafute kiti Mombasa na sisi tutamuonyesha vumbi (If Sonko thinks he is man enough, let him seek an elective post in Mombasa and we shall show him dust),” she said.
Reacting to the demo on Sunday, Mr Sonko said: “Paying a few people to demonstrate against me makes no sense because I can mobilise a bigger (crowd) without spending a coin. But what we are demanding as the government of the day is respect for the President. We will not allow Joho to talk at the President and get away with it.”
SPAT WITH HASSAN JOHO
Hours after the protest, Mr Sonko said in a Facebook post: “As the Senator for Nairobi City County, I will not sit back and watch leaders such as Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho, whom I respect so much, to play cheap politics and mislead the people of Mombasa.”
He said bitter confrontations are meaningless.
“I have great respect for Cord leaders Raila Odinga, Kalonzo Musyoka and Moses Wetangula, and at no time will I insult or blackmail them. Did Governor Joho have to confront the President at a public function? Wasn’t there a better time and place where he could raise such issues of allegedly being snubbed by the President?” Mr Sonko asked.
Similar demonstrations were held in Mvita, where hundreds of women poured onto the streets with placards condemning Mr Sonko.
“We are giving him seven days to apologise to the women of Mombasa whom he abused. We also want him to apologise to Mombasa leaders,” said some of the placards.
Ms Mboko said Mombasa people are civilised and would not return abuse for abuse, but demanded that Mr Sonko retract the remarks made during the rally where the President issued title deeds to beneficiaries of the Waitiki land.
Mr Sonko was involved in a spat with Mr Joho during the tension-packed meeting, which the two turned into a political contest between Jubilee and ODM.
The meeting had been called to issue 5,000 title deeds to squatters occupying the Waitiki Farm in Likoni.