Ruto heaps praises on 'hero, mentor and father'

Deputy President William Ruto (pictured) yesterday eulogised retired President Daniel Moi as a hero, mentor and father to many leaders.

Ruto recounted Moi's efforts to unite the country through formation of an inclusive government made up of all communities after he took over from founding father Jomo Kenyatta.

He recalled how the former president rallied the country to unite through his clarion call of “peace, love and unity”.

In his speech delivered during the State funeral service in honour of Moi at the Nyayo Stadium, the deputy president described Moi as a pan-Africanist, a great statesman, a selfless leader, and a father of the nation.

“We celebrate the life of our father, our hero and our mentor. President Moi stands out; taking over from our founding father Mzee Jomo Kenyatta, he consolidated this country from where Jomo Kenyatta left it and brought on board tirelessly all communities including the marginalised to be mainstreamed into the nation of Kenya,” said Ruto.

Peace, love and unity

Ruto, who joined the country’s politics through the YK92, where he played a pivotal role in Moi’s re-election in 1992 said the retired president mentored many political figures.

“Moi went ahead without a PhD to become professor and we all became students of his school of leadership and politics; a school whose motto was "fuata nyayo"; his mission "siasa mbaya maisha mbaya" and his vision was peace, love and unity,” said Ruto.

The deputy president went on: “And many of the leaders in Kenya today are graduates of that school including myself.”

He also hailed Moi's dedication to the education sector during his 24-year rule, saying the former president's footprints in the entire education system is evident in the expansion of universities.

“President Moi was a great teacher and his footprints in the entire education system in Kenya is evident. Many university graduates owe their education to the expanded opportunities overseen by President Moi and today as a country we pride ourselves among the best human resource in Africa,” added Ruto.

Ruto said that even though Moi may have erred in certain decisions, he noted that the second president was genuine in his service to the country.

“Moi always meant the best for Kenya and did his best, we can attest that he went out of his way to do the best he could for his country; he was a nationalist and a patriot,” concluded the DP.