Azimio leaders in Meru declare willingness to work with Ruto

President William Ruto speaks during a past Kenya Kwanza final rally. [Stafford Ondego, Standard]

A section of Azimio leaders in Meru have resolved to back and President William Ruto’s development agenda.

Drawn from both Tharaka Nithi and Meru counties, the leaders expressed their willingness to partner with the Kenya Kwanza administration for the benefit of their people.

 Igembe Central MP Dan Kiili, who was elected on a Jubilee ticket, said though he is still in Azimio, he will cooperate with the national government.  

“He (Ruto) wants the best for this country,” he said, adding there is no reason for him to abandon Jubilee because both he and the President want the same thing - development for the people.

“He wants the country united, buy he has said he, also wants a strong opposition,” said Kiili.

The MP said Dr Ruto had come out to express his desire to work with all leaders for the sake of development.

“We are in opposition but we are working with him as our president. Igembe people voted for me and also for him. We have a responsibility to work with him for development for our people,” Kiili said.

Former Meru Assembly Majority Leader Victor Kariithi, who successfully vied for the Athwana Ward seat on the ticket of the Devolution Empowerment Party, said he has since shifted his allegiance to Ruto.  Kariithi is also now working with Governor Kawira Mwangaza who beat former governor Kiraitu Murungi and Agriculture CS Mithika Linturi.

From left: Igembe Central MP Dan Kiili, Education CS Ezekiel Machogu, Igembe South MP John Paul Mwirigi and Igembe North's Julius Taitumu when they held talks on the elevation of Igembe campus to a Chuka University College. [Courtesy, Standard]

“As DEP(Bus party), we joined the President (Uhuru Kenyatta)’s team when his election was contested at the Supreme Court. We acknowledged that we had made huge mistakes in expecting an ‘election miracle’ miracle for the former Prime Minister when the ground in Meru had really insisted that they badly wanted a hustlers presidency. Needless to say, the disconnect cost us heavily,” Kariithi said.

He said now that the election dust has settled, it is time to forge unity to improve service delivery.

“Elections are way behind us and clearly, we need to strongly support all our leaders to deliver. In Meru, we have joined President Ruto and Deputy President Gachagua’s efforts in supporting Governor Mwangaza. I have on a few times engaged her on the ongoing differences with the Assembly with a view of enhancing a smoother linkage,” he said.

 In Tharaka Nithi, former Chuka University VC Prof Erastus Njoka, who vied for the Tharaka Nithi governor’s seat on a Jubilee ticket, is also supporting President Ruto’s development activities.

  “Ruto is our president. The Njuri Ncheke works with the government of the day and there is need to support him 100 percent for development,” said Prof Njoka, who is the council’s patron.

Political analyst Prof Gitile Naituli said while reestablishing friendships is good, in fact it is a clever thing and they should be encouraged. But shaking hands can also be negative if the idea of shaking hands is to avoid having an opposition. Then that is dangerous, because you need an opposition,” said Prof Naituli.

The Standard
Get unlimited access to The Standard website!