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Ruto: I am ready to face-off with Raila in free and fair polls

By Willis Oketch | October 20th 2021

Deputy President William Ruto [Sammy Omingo, Standard]

Deputy President William Ruto yesterday complained about people he accused of weakening the ruling Jubilee Party to rally behind a 'project' for the 2022 presidential race.

Speaking in Lamu as he concluded his five-day tour of the Coast, Ruto said it was a shame that more than eight million people who voted for the Jubilee in 2017 were now being forced to rally behind an outsider.

The DP said he was ready to face-off with ODM leader Raila Odinga in a free and fair contest.

"I'll send him home very early in the morning," he said.

He said schemes have been hatched to derail his quest to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta but assured his supporters that he had put in place plans to beat the same.

"Does it mean that we could not get a candidate from the eight million people who voted for Jubilee and that is why we went fishing for one from outside the party?" he posed.

In the last five days, the DP has made whirlwind tours of Taita Taveta, Mombasa, Kwale, Kilifi and Lamu counties.

He said the State functionaries who weakened the party and were now forcing people to support Raila will be taught a lesson in the 2022 General Election.

"They underrate Jubilee supporters. They weakened Jubilee to force us to support a project," he said at the Mpeketoni grounds, Lamu East. "We will reject that project." 

Ruto challenged those who have served in senior government positions to enumerate their achievements.

He noted that the Jubilee government has constructed roads, ports, water projects, technical institutions and ensured electricity connection.

"I can say under the Jubilee government in which I serve as the deputy president, we have done a lot. I ask those who were vice presidents and Prime Minister to also enumerate their achievements," he said.

The DP was accompanied by leaders allied to United Democratic Movement (UDA).

He asked President Kenyatta not to endorse his preferred successor.

Ruto allies said the president should in the remaining nine months resuscitate the economy, lift the curfew and keep off the succession politics.

"He should lift the curfew, revive the economy and like President Mwai Kibaki, not to interfere with his succession," said Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichungwa. 

Ruto claimed that his competitors have no development agenda for Kenyans.

“People traveling from Mombasa to Lamu are now taking a very short time unlike in the past when it used to take five hours,” said Ruto of the Garsen-Lamu road whose construction is near completion.

He promised farmers' cooperatives and societies access loans at an interest rate of between two and four percent if he ascends to power. 

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