Ruto allies defend State as rebellion heightens

Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago (left) and Turbo MP Elisha Busienei address the Press in Eldoret yesterday. Mandago said the rebellion that Ruto is facing is just a passing cloud, which will end once the by-election is concluded. [Photo: Kevin Tunoi/standard]

Leaders allied to Deputy President William Ruto in the North Rift are putting on a brave face in the wake of growing rebellion against him.

The leaders have challenged Jubilee MPs who are supporting the Kanu candidate in the Kericho mini-poll.

“Jubilee has a democratic space and such errant leaders need to take a stand in broad daylight. We shall continue supporting the Government because we have tasted and felt the fruit of being in power,” Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago said.

Mr Mandago said the rebellion that Ruto is facing “is just a passing cloud, which will end once the by-election is concluded.”

“It is a fact that after the by-election, the Rift Valley region will enjoy political normalcy,” said Mandago, who spoke after attending a women meeting at AIC Pioneer Church in Eldoret.

Some leaders have accused Ruto of favouring the North Rift in terms of development projects and public appointments, leaving out the South.

But Mandago said it is the responsibility of the leaders complaining to follow up and champion for the completion of the projects and not the DP or the President.

He challenged leaders who have ambitions of joining the opposing forces led by Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto to make good their threats instead of empty rhetoric.

Turbo MP Elisha Busienei said Jubilee MPs, who have taken on the DP in a supremacy contest, are headed for political oblivion “as they do not have the blessing of locals.”

The MP defended the recent Government ministerial and parastatal appointments, saying they were conducted based on merit.

“There is no way the Government will only award key positions to two communities. Such claims are not true,” he said.

Kesses MP James Bett defended the Jubilee government’s record, saying for the past three years, they have been able to launch myriad projects aimed at improving livelihoods.

“In the Rift, we have witnessed the launch of a fertiliser plant, free education and implementation of devolution.

The electorate should not be cheated by the negative claims but also appreciate work done by the Government,” he added.

Marakwet East MP Kangogo Bowen defended elected leaders and the Jubilee government, stating they have presented all challenges raised by their people to the President and his deputy and the Government has been responding.

“The President and his deputy recently toured South Rift and launched a Sh34 billion water project, which will even benefit the North.

Most roads have been tendered and are just waiting commissioning and the public should be patient, there is no disparity in how the North and South have been treated,” said Mr Bowen.

Marakwet East MP Kangogo Bowen accused those claiming that South Rift has been discriminated against of advancing propaganda to portray the State negatively.

Moiben MP Silas Tiren said the State has tried very much to address farmers’ issues through fertiliser subsidies to lower cost of production.