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Stop frustrating my bid, Ruto tells Uhuru, Raila

By Robert Amalemba | September 19th 2021

Deputy President William Ruto seek God's intervention as African Church of the Holy Spirit church leaders led by their high priest Shem Shamalla before donating a new car to them on September 18, 2021. [Benjamin Sakwa,Standard]

Deputy President William Ruto has faulted President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga for frustrating his presidential bid.

He said the two had benefited from his generosity but now don’t want to see him close to the country’s top seat.

He wondered why the duo were top critics of his bottom-up economic model that he has been riding on to sell his 2022 presidential bid without giving solid alternatives.

“I campaigned for Raila in 2007 until he landed the premier position. I have helped Uhuru get the presidency for two consecutive terms. But when it is my turn now, the two are against it. I wonder why...it could be because my father has never been at the top of the country’s political pecking order,” he said at Malava constituency in Kakamega County.

He added: “They pretend not to understand the (bottom-up) economic model with the endgame of narrowing the gap between the rich and the poor. They are out of touch with mwananchi and full of pride yet it is the same attitude that will make them flop in their schemes come 2022 just as it happened when they arrogantly campaigned for the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI).”

A charged DP said the conspiracy against his presidency “involved up to seven men who sat at round tables discussing how to ground me politically”. 

He nonetheless assured the conspirators of a rude shock if they assumed he was a walk-over candidate in the political arena.

“In my current political ship of UDA (United Democratic Alliance), I have bagged the majority of the now doomed Jubilee party, some from ODM, others from ANC and Ford Kenya. They make up to 150 and of course not forgetting the millions of hustlers and God,” he said. “I helped Jubilee form government and now I will ensure UDA forms the next government. Mark that.”

The DP’s tour came a week after Raila visited the county with his Azimio la Umoja programme that says no economic model can thrive through a chaotic political environment.

The event also witnessed the Western Kenya delegates, led by former strong Ruto allies like Bernard Shinali (Ikolomani MP, Jubilee) and Emmanuel Wangwe (Navakholo MP, Jubilee), from the five counties in the region propose a rotational presidency.

The delegates said it was time for the country to have the presidency shift from the two dominant tribes that have held it since independence.

“We affirm our support for Raila Odinga as Kenya’s fifth president. Kenya is made of 44 communities and other communities should be supported for the top leadership of the country,” said Wangwe, who is also National Assembly Chief Whip.

In what appeared to be watering down the Kakamega Azimio declaration, Ruto told Kakamega residents during a stopover that there was no need for Kenyans to go tribal on the presidency.

“Tribal politics are a thing of the past. We have two tribes in Kenya - the haves and the have-nots - and I am the preferred candidate for the have-nots,” he said.

“I also encourage you to leave tribal parties and join UDA which has a national face,” he added.

The DP reiterated that he was open to reconciliation talks with Uhuru that are being spearheaded by the Catholic Church but his allies thought otherwise.

“Brokers in Uhuru’s camp have set conditions for the UhuRuto handshake as if our campaign depends on it. Let it be known that with or without the handshake, Ruto will still make it as president,” said former Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale.

Jubilee MPs Maoka Maore (Igembe North), Jeremiah Kioni (Ndaragwa), Ngunjiri Wambugu (Nyeri Town), Jude Njomo (Kaimbu), Mwathi Mungai (Limuru) and Wangwe this week gave one condition to Ruto when he was readying for the handshake: Stop criticising the president.

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