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Martha Karua and Rigathi Gachagua reveal their net worth

Rigathi Gachagua and Martha Karua shake hands ahead of the deputy presidential debate at CUEA, Nairobi on July 19, 2022. [Denish Ochieng, Standard]

Martha Karua of Azimio la Umoja-One Kenya says she has a net worth of Sh150 million.

Rigathi Gachagua of the United Democratic Alliance (UDA), on the other hand, says he has a net worth of Sh800 million.

The two made the revelations during the deputy presidential debate held on Tuesday, July 19 at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa in Nairobi.

Karua said she doesn’t own any land outside Nairobi and her rural Gichugu home.

“I’m not thirsty for land, and I’m not thirsty for worldly goods. I’m happy to have a house in Nairobi that I call home and have a house in my father’s land [in Gichugu, Kirinyaga County]. I do not look for property; not everyone is happy to amass [undeserved wealth],” she said.

Gachagua, on the other hand, said the government has frozen his Sh200 million, and not Sh12 billion as widely reported.

The Mathira MP claims his funds were frozen by the courts after the Jubilee administration unsuccessfully attempted to persuade him to drop his support for Deputy President William Ruto.

“I had the money when I supported [President] Uhuru in 2013, I still had the money when I supported him [again] in 2017. When I refused to abandon Ruto [after the DP and the president fell out], they froze my funds all of a sudden,” he said.

He said he is currently worth Sh600 million minus the frozen funds. Inclusive of the frozen funds, the UDA deputy presidential candidate said his total net worth is Sh800 million.

Gachagua said he got his wealth through his businesses and career in the civil service.

'Gachagua was hand-picked by Ruto'

During the debate, Karua said she went through a competitive process to be chosen as Raila Odinga’s running mate, unlike Rigathi Gachagua whom she accused of being “hand-picked by DP William Ruto”.

Karua was responding to Gachagua’s claims that President Uhuru Kenyatta “hand-picked” Karua as Raila Odinga’s running mate to protect his interests and those of his family members.

“The president said recently at State House, Nairobi that he nominated Martha Karua [as Raila Odinga’s deputy presidential candidate] to protect his interests and those of his family,” Gachagua said.

In response, Karua said: “Rigathi is not being honest. President Kenyatta did not assign me any role ahead of the upcoming elections. I was competitively selected, unlike my friend who was hand-picked [by Deputy President William Ruto].”

Karua was referring to reports that Tharaka Nithi Senator Kithure Kindiki was selected by the secretariat formed to help DP Ruto pick a running mate.

Despite Kindiki being the favourite, Ruto settled on Gachagua, citing his impressive grassroots mobilisation skills.

The July 19 debate was moderated by KTN News’ Sophia Wanuna and James Smart of NTV.