Kilifi family that gifted President Ruto a rooster seeks help to bury kin

The family of Mwatsuma Nyale displays a photo they took with President William Ruto in 2019. [Nehemiah Okwembah, Standard]

A family from Kitsoeni village in Chonyi Sub County, Kilifi is appealing to President William Ruto to help them bury their father, who once gifted him a rooster.

The family of 85-year-old Mwatsuma Nyale said that Ruto visited their homestead in 2019 while he was the Deputy President, during the launch of the Rural Electrification Project. The president, then DP, switched on the lights at Mr. Nyale’s two-roomed Makuti thatched house.

Stella Mbodza Mwatsuma, the last born of the deceased displayed pictures they kept as memories of the occasion. In one such photo, she is seen greeting Ruto while her late father looks on, while in another, Mbodza is seen handing over a rooster to the president.

The family with a poor background said that it was painful to bury their relative without the president knowing and that he should link up with them to renew the 2019 bond in their hour of need.

“President Ruto came here and switched on the light at my father’s compound, and he was given a rooster. Villagers have been referring to him as ‘Baba wa Ruto’. I am appealing to Ruto to come to our aid at this trying time and also help me join college,” she pleaded.

The last born in a family of 11 said that she was unable to continue with her studies due to lack of funds.

“All I am asking for is help to bury my father and to get a scholarship so that I can achieve my dreams,” she said.

The deceased’ son, Nyale Makiti, overwhelmed with emotions only called for assistance from the Head of State.

“We are just appealing for help to send off my father,” he said.

Rogers Mabenda said that the Mwatsuma was chosen to host Ruto because of his stature in society, adding that it was through him that the village got electricity.

“The old man was very generous and people would flock to his little house for advice and that is why when Ruto was visiting, we chose him as the host.”

His sentiments were echoed by Gilbert Peru, a family member who said that the deceased should be given a dignified send-off.

“The rural electrification project has really changed the village. All we are asking for from the president is that he visits the family again so that we can reminisce about the 2019 action,” he said.