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What next for Irungu Kang’ata?

By Vincent Kejitan | February 10th 2021
Murang'a Senator Irungu Kang'ata speaks during a presser at KICC. [David Njaaga, Standard]

Murang’a Senator Irungu Kang’ata was on Tuesday removed as Senate Majority Whip by Jubilee Party and replaced by Kiambu Senator Kimani Wamatangi.

According to Jubilee Secretary-General Raphael Tuju, the decision was arrived at following a number of issues, key among them being breach of confidentiality.

“His biggest failure as far as leadership is concerned was discussing private matters with other parties. You don’t kiss and tell.

“It is that breach of confidentiality that has made his position untenable,” Tuju said.

Having taken over from Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen as the Majority Whip in May 2020, Kang’ata enjoyed a cordial relationship with President Uhuru Kenyatta and was among those who backed the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI).

Fast-forward to late December 2020 when the Murang’a senator penned a letter to the Head of State telling him the document does not resonate well with locals.

The letter became a source of disharmony and some crticised him for not respecting the President.

Kang’ata called for proper research methodology to be employed and urged the pro-BBI team to change tact to avoid embarrassment in case the reforms were subjected to a vote.

Further, the senator stated that the BBI contains many benefits for the region (central) which may be lost forever especially in a situation where ‘their son’ is not in the driving seat.

At the time, a number of Governors led by Francis Kimemia, the chair of the Central Region Economic Bloc (CEREB), reprimanded him for breach of protocol while directing sensitive issues to the Head of State.

They called on top Jubilee leadership to immediately call together all political actors including national, county and grassroots leadership to operate on a clear synergy where everybody pulls together in the national interest.

"It raises questions why a senior member of the government leadership in Parliament would choose this cheap populist method to address this issue to the president whose office is just a few steps away from Parliament," Kimemia said in a statement to newsrooms.

Speaking during an interview with a local TV station on Tuesday evening, Kang’ata said he is set to make a major announcement soon.

Senators Irungu Kang'ata (Murang'a), Mwangi Githiomi (Nyandarua), Samson Cherargei (Nandi) and Kimani wa Matangi (Kiambu) during a Jubilee parliamentary group meeting at KICC, Nairobi on Tuesday, February 09, 2021. [David Njaaga, Standard]

He added that he will consult with residents of his locality before announcing the way forward.

“In the next three weeks I will be having a small gathering in my home in Murang’a and I will make a major announcement.

“It is not about me. It is about the wananchi…leadership is about echoing what the people are saying. I need to talk to my people…they give me a political direction and then I will echo their views,” he said.

Asked about decamping to the Tangatanga, Kang’ata said he still believes in what the President said regarding serving two terms and handing over to Deputy President William Ruto.

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