Mombasa Governor Ali Hassan Joho has dismissed seeking an endorsement to foster his presidential bid in the 2022 general election.
Speaking during an interview with KTN News on March 1, 2021, the ODM deputy party leader stated that he does not need anyone's blessing to run for president.
Joho clarified that his, "tuliwabeba ni wakati wetu watubebe" sentiment does not translate to plight for an endorsement, rather seek the support of other regions and leaders to get him to State House.
"I don't want an endorsement, but I am reminding partners or allies that politics most times is about mutual interests. Like we have said, we will not be following forever. Those we have followed for a long period of time shall also follow us.
"I am not running because I am expecting some kind of endorsement. I don't think I am made of such kind of politics," Joho declared.
"I have never been endorsed in any political position I have held," he reiterated.
The Mombasa governor took a trip down memory lane, revealing he had not been endorsed in any election, including his landslide gubernatorial wins in 2013 and 2017.
He reiterated that the people of Mombasa are the ones to do that, and not the other way round.
Joho maintained that his decision to run for president was not a ploy to lock out any leader's progression in the coast region, rather, an opportunity to do service for the nation and the people of Mombasa.
His sentiments come at the back of continued campaign rallies in the country by leaders from the National Super Alliance Coalition. This includes his party leader Raila Odinga who is in the coast drumming up support for the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI).
Joho is yet to attend a single ODM rally in recent days, with, reason attributed to his decision to seek the presidency on the party's ticket. This may see him come up against his Raila in the party primaries.
With several by-elections coming up, Joho is yet to actively grace the campaign trail as he was in the Msambweni by-election since declaring his bid for presidency.
"First of all we have a very mutual, respectful and cordial relationship (with Raila Odinga). He remains my party leader even though obviously democracy allows us at some point to be able to sail in different directions. I am competing with him on an ODM ticket.
"We have a relationship where we believe largely on the party issues, on the manifestos and ideologies but I am interested to be the flag bearer of ODM," Joho stated.
He further revealed that his team is Nairobi to submit his application papers, though the party extended the deadline to March 31.
On February 21, Raila stated that he will not endorse any leader ahead of the 2022 general election. This was after his fellow NASA principals had earlier alleged that the former premier had a debt to pay.
The presidential race continues to take shape with Deputy President William Ruto considered the man to beat. Other contestants include former UNACTAD Secretary-General Mukhisa Kituyi and ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi.