Since 1902

Kidero, Sonko clash over DP Ruto involvement in Nairobi politics

Deputy president William Ruto(right) among Nairobi Jubilee aspirants from left Women Representative Rachel Shebesh, Johnstone Sakaja and Mike Sonko at Tassia, dance before he addressed members of the public when he took his campaigns to Embakasi East on 20/06/2017 PHOTO: JENIPHER WACHIE

The race for Nairobi County top seat has taken a different dimension with the incumbent Governor Evans Kidero now accusing Deputy President William Ruto of striving to run the county by proxy.

Kidero told The Standard that the active role DP Ruto had taken in drumming support for Jubilee Party candidate for the governor position in Nairobi leaves a lot to be desired as it is a grand scheme to position himself ahead of the 2022 elections.

"The team that is running for Nairobi seats cannot talk to Nairobians unless he (William Ruto) is present, Nairobians want their own governor whom they choose,” the governor said.

Kidero added that while the Jubilee team is free to campaign in Nairobi, it would be good for the people to see that indeed no candidate is being fronted by any individual for whatever reasons.

"The Deputy President has been accused of interfering with nominations of governors in Kiambu, Uasin Gishu, Nakuru, Kericho, Kajiado and Bomet Counties. Even though it is Jubilee against Nasa, it is appearing that the allegation that Ruto is keen on weeding out strong people before the 2022 elections could be true," said Kidero.

Kidero's claims come barely a week after Peter Kenneth; another Nairobi governorship contender accused Senator Mike Sonko of being William Ruto's 'project'.

Kenneth said during his campaigns in Mlango Kubwa area in Nairobi that Ruto was the mastermind behind the rigging that saw him lose Jubilee nominations to Mike Sonko.

But in a telephone interview with Senator Mike Sonko, the flamboyant politician dismissed Kidero's claims saying that the sitting governor should have himself to blame for not doing anything for the Nairobi people while in office.

"If he (Kidero) has found Nairobi hostile because for the last four years he has not been there for the electorate, then he should not drag the DP's name into that. He (Ruto) is the Deputy Party Leader and there is nothing wrong with him campaigning for any Jubilee Party candidate anywhere in the country," said Sonko.

Sonko said that he has been with the people of Nairobi since 2013 and it is the 'failure of the county government to deliver to the people of Nairobi that made him come up with the idea of Sonko Rescue Team.

Ruto, in endorsing the Sonko-Igathe pair last month, said the two were a dynamic duo who would win the Nairobi seat with a landslide.

"We are not playing a 50-50 game here. We are confident that with Polycarp Igathe on board, the Nairobi chapter is closed," said Ruto.