Deputy President William Ruto yesterday likened his move to disband the United Republican Party to former President‘s Daniel Moi‘s move to disband the Kenya African Democratic Union for KANU.
Just like Moi’s move saw him ascend to the presidency, Ruto also hopes to be president in 2022 through the Jubilee Party.
Ruto said he is borrowing from Moi’s strategy by opting to change parties before he clinches power in rare praise for the retired president.
Ruto, who hosted thousands of URP supporters at his Sugoi home, said Jubilee Party was his pathway to State House after President Uhuru Kenyatta finishes his ten year term.
Describing himself as a student of Moi politics, Ruto said he cannot be beaten in political games.
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"Retired President Moi could see far ahead. I worked with him and I want to emulate him. When he realised that it was necessary to work with Kanu, he wound up his party Kenya African Democratic Union (Kadu) because he looked at the bigger picture," said Ruto in the meeting that was attended by governors, senators, members of the national and county assembly from North, Central and South Rift.
He explained that it was because of his humility that the former President grew into a political giant and through him, he (Ruto) had learned valuable political lessons.
"Some people are saying that Ruto is killing his URP and then he will become a non-issue in politics. I ask them, why do you hate me to an extent of thinking that I am foolish? I worked with Moi. I will be obedient and serve President Kenyatta's government until my time comes," said Ruto to a applause from his supporters.
He said the move was aimed at building a stronger party ahead of 2022. He added: "There is an impact in having numbers and that is why we are looking forward to achieving the 50 plus one votes come 2022, and that comes when we have a stronger party."
Ruto told those in attendance he was not worried whether voters from Mt Kenya will vote for him in 2022 because, through the merger, he would make friends from all the communities across the country.
"Some are telling me, are you sure that voters from Mt Kenya will support you? I want to tell you today, do not be worried. We are already in Government and even after 2017 under Kenyatta presidency, we will still be in Government. What will come will come, and this is a journey we are beginning now," said Ruto.
Mt Kenya votes
The DP added: "Residents of Mt Kenya have already heard whispers from people across other communities that they (Mount Kenya) do not vote for anyone apart from one of their own. I am sure they would want to drop that tag by voting for me in 2022. Meanwhile, we shall continue making friends with other communities just like Moi did during his long tenure."
The Deputy President said he will ensure President Uhuru Kenyatta is re-elected in 2017 then take over the party as he prepares for his stab at the presidency.
"We are not talking about the 2017 elections; that is already determined. We are now strategising for the election after that, and for us to win, we need friends from across the country and that is why I am working hard to build the new party," he said.
He took a swipe at those opposing the merger and holding on to URP saying they did not even know how the party was formed. Neither were they aware how it won 76 parliamentary seats including in counties like Mandera, Isiolo, Samburu and Teso.
"I camped in Mandera, Samburu, Isiolo, Kuria, Coast region and several other parts to get those seats. Those speaking against Jubilee Party did not make any effort to support us at URP when we were criss-crossing the country to get leaders elected in the party," he said.