Stop lying to President Uhuru, Waruguru tells Mt Kenya MPs

Laikipia Woman Rep Cate Waruguru addresses mourners at Munyaka area, Kieni Constituency on September 24, 2021. [Courtesy]

The political battle for Mt Kenya region has taken a new path with some political leaders now accusing MPs allied to President Uhuru Kenyatta of deceit.

The latest political salvo - in a series of many - came on Sunday, September 26 - from Laikipia Woman Rep Cate Waruguru.

Waruguru did not mince her words accusing Mt Kenya MPs close to President Kenyatta of lying to him about how Kenyans feel about the rising cost of living.

In a phone interview with The Standard, Waruguru said Kenyans are unhappy with President Kenyatta’s administration after the prices of basic commodities, fuel and electricity went up despite the Covid-19 pandemic.

“We are still in lockdown, Kenyans don’t have money in their pockets, but the prices have gone up under the watch of their leaders,” she said.

She hit out at politicians from the region who run around in the village claiming they meet the President yet they don’t tell him to come and witnessed the masses’ suffering.

“They brag here in the village that they talk to President Kenyatta frequently, but cannot tell him the reality on the ground. They are brokers.”

Waruguru challenged the leaders led by Kieni MP Kanini Kega to tell President Kenyatta that locals were unhappy with his administration following the rising cost of living.

She claimed the unhappiness among the Mt Kenya electorate has seen most of them join Deputy President William Ruto’s United Democratic Alliance (UDA) ahead of the 2022 polls.

The County MP said the anger was slowly building among voters in the region and that if not addressed early enough, it will play a role in how they vote in the 2022 General Election.

“Don’t lie to the President people are unhappy and the ground is politically slippery, if you don’t do something he [Ruto] will run away with the votes,” she said.

The legislator told Kega to tell President Kenyatta that the rising cost of fuel and basic commodities has angered many Kenyans and will haunt the leaders during the election.

She also linked the anger to rise in many small political parties in the region, saying political leaders find it difficult to sell Jubilee agenda when locals are suffering.

Fuel prices

Public uproar on September 15 greeted the government’s move to increase fuel products' retail prices to historical highs, with many Kenyans terming the move unwise.

Kenyans expressed anger, frustration and fear over the high cost of petroleum products, noting that the State had hit them at the worst possible time.

The high fuel prices have been effected at a time Kenyans are grappling with adverse effects of Covid-19 that has dented their earnings. It will also have a ripple effect on critical sectors of the economy.

Around the country, Kenyans are looking up to the government, possibly to subsidise the cost of fuel or forego some taxes and levies. They also want Members of Parliament to bail them out through legislation.

In the new pricing, super petrol now retails at Sh134.72 per litre in Nairobi, a six per cent increase from Sh127.14 per litre.

Diesel retails at Sh115.6 over the next one month, also a sharp increase from Sh107.66. Kerosene, largely a poor man’s fuel for lighting and cooking, has also gone up substantially, increasing by Sh12.97 per litre to Sh110.82.

No six-piece voting

On Mt Kenya politics, she told politicians from the region to stop whining that they are being forced to fold their parties and join presidential aspirants’ outfits but go to the electorate and sell their agenda.

“If you have a party, move around, go to churches and sell your agenda to the people and they will listen to you,” she said.

She said they will negotiate with top presidential contenders as a region, but in other seats, they will go different ways.

“There will not be six-piece voting here, let us negotiate on the seat of the president but down here, we will mix things,” she added amid cheers from the crowd.