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Farouk Kibet: Ruto's powerful right hand man


Farouk Kibet during President William Ruto swearing in at Kasarani Stadium on September 13, 2022 [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

Farouk Teigut Kibet, the long-serving personal assistant to President William Ruto, is held in awe.

Farouk, who has over the past years maintained a shadowy character, is a powerful man in Ruto's inner circle.

The man who hails from Kapkechui-Chepsaita in Turbo, Uasin Gishu County, started working with the president in 1997 when he won the Eldoret North MP seat, flooring former MP Reuben Chesire.

Farouk recently told The Standard that he was supporting Chesire's bid before he jumped ship and threw his weight behind Ruto.

"When I told Ruto that I wanted to work for him, he embraced me and told me that he wanted me to be his brother although he knew well that I had not supported his bid. We made a covenant that we would work together and that covenant has never been broken," he said.

He said he has stuck together with his boss through the ups and downs from when he was a political greenhorn to now being the president.

On Sunday during a thanksgiving service at Koilel, Kenya Kwanza politicians led by Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua showered Farouk with praises owing to his strict, loyal, and organised nature.

The leaders described Ruto's personal assistant as a man wielding immense power such that he determines who gets to see the president.

Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro claimed that Farouk is so close to the president that Deputy Gachagua seeks permission from him to see his boss.

He claimed that Farouk is a very important person in the Head of State's inner circle saying that although he has no office, the role he plays is very significant.

"Farouk's office is that of the President of Kenya. Because you can't access the president if Farouk says no. " To reach the president, the deputy president who is my friend, Farouk [must give him the nod] " said Nyoro as the crowd burst into laughter.

Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen said that President Ruto's aide is diligent in his work and is worth being used as a good example.

"Farouk is a different man, even the newsmen wonder who to call him. He has a big responsibility and works hard although you can never find his office. His office is where he is," said Murkomen.

Political journey

The National Assembly Majority leader who doubles as Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichungwa said that the Kenya Kwanza team depended on the president's personal assistant throughout the campaign period to organise various events.

He noted that Farouk is orderly and good at his job and they would often rely on him.

"We are not praising Farouk. He is a hardworking person and is not arrogant. Whenever there was a disorderly incident during the campaigns we knew Farouk would take charge and restore order. It is good that we thank him when he lives, he has been instrumental in our political journey," said Ichungwa. DP Gachagua said that the president's personal assistant contributed immensely to the success of the Kenya Kwanza coalition.

"You remember we used to say that 'hatupangwingwi' (we cannot be manipulated), but we allowed Farouk to manage us because of the impeccable work that he does. He could organize our events well, our choppers, and the food for our guests. We pride in him," said Gachagua.

The DP said that he admires Farouk and had even expressed his wish to the President to have the PA work for him (Gachagua).

"If at any point during the campaigns Farouk appeared to be very strict, I wish to apologise on his behalf. When I requested to have Farouk work with me, the president told me off saying that I should look for my own 'Farouk'. Now I will look for one and have Farouk train him for me," said Gachagua.

Kiharu MP said there was a big reason why Ruto trusts Farouk and Kapseret MP Oscar Sudi and has faith in persons like him (Nyoro). We will converse about it one day.

"DP Rigathi Gachagua cannot get to president William Ruto without going through Farouk Kibet," he said.

Dennis Itumbi said: "Farouk Kibet woodman. Effective. Organises the space. Absolutely Smart! You do not survive around WSR all those years if you are anything less.. Tough - Yes. Firm - Yes. Effective - Yes. But most importantly, he thinks beyond the boardroom."

During the burial of Farouk's father Paul Teigut in November 2018, Garissa Township MP Aden Duale said the president's right-hand man was a dictator who made many MPs go through troubles to reach his boss (sic)'- then deputy president.

"He has no office but has a corridor known as a corridor of power that ends at the DP's Office," said Duale.

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