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I’ve accepted that President Uhuru doesn’t want me – DP William Ruto

Deputy President William Ruto addressing a political rally at Dundori in Bahati, Nakuru County on Saturday, March 19, 2022. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

Deputy President William Ruto says he has made peace with the fact that President Uhuru Kenyatta does not approve of his presidential candidature.

Ruto, however, says Kenyatta should stay away from the campaigns so that Raila Odinga does not get undue favour.

The deputy president made the remarks at Dundori in Bahati Constituency, Nakuru County on Saturday, March 19.

DP William Ruto (R) speaking with Bahati MP Kimani Ngunjiri on Saturday, March 19, 2022. [Kipsang Joseph, Standard]

“I have made peace with the fact that President Kenyatta doesn’t want to help me ascend to presidency. I’m only asking him to leave the presidential campaign, that’s all,” Ruto told a roadside gathering.

“I’m sure that the voters’ approval is enough for me to [politically] sink Raila Odinga,” he emphasised.

The DP, in yet another occasion, accused ODM leader Raila Odinga of engineering his arraignment at the ICC, and that Odinga’s advancing age is a major disadvantage when it comes to executing presidential duties.

“Uhuru and I were charged for crimes against humanity at The Hague. Who engineered our arraignment? Isn’t it Raila Odinga?” he posed.

Odinga, 77, is on the record dismissing claims that he played a part in Ruto and Kenyatta’s woes at the ICC in the Netherlands.

“You all know that I’m competing against Raila. When Uhuru Kenyatta was seeking the presidency [in 2002, 2013, 2017], who stood with him? We know Raila Odinga for his constant refusal to accept election results.

“Let’s put him in a wheelbarrow, and take him to [his ancestral home in] Bondo, Siaya County so that he can retire from politics in peace,” Ruto told the crowd.

“I have urged my friend the president to stop campaigning for Raila Odinga. If he keeps off, I’m sure to floor Raila with ease. Let him (Uhuru) just clear the way for me.  At the age of almost 80, do you think Raila has radical ideas to transform Kenya?” posed Ruto.

In his quest to urge Kenyatta to stay away from active politics, the DP was reiterating remarks he made at the president’s Gatundu South backyard on Friday, March 18.

“I am urging you to speak with your friend and neighbour President Kenyatta to stay away from the presidential campaigns,” he said during a rally at Mutomo Village in Gatundu South, Kiambu County.

“Kindly ask him not to cut off my legs with the same knife that I used in protecting him in the previous two general elections. Ask him not to extend support to that man full of riddle talk (Raila Odinga).

“Remind him that he and I knelt down to be prayed for by the clergy and his mum, Mama Ngina Kenyatta. Even if he doesn’t want to help me in my quest to become president, kindly ask him to stay out of the presidential campaigns so that I can defeat Raila Odinga.”

On Saturday, March 19, the deputy president was accompanied to Bahati by area MP Kimani Ngunjiri, Amani National Congress (ANC) Party leader Musalia Mudavadi, Ford-Kenya Party leader Moses Wetang’ula, Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua, Tharaka Nithi Senator Kithure Kindiki, Nakuru Senator Susan Kihika, Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung'wah, Nakuru Woman Representative Liza Chelule, former Kiambu Governor Ferdinand Waititu, Keroche Breweries CEO Tabitha Karanja, among others.

In his address, ANC leader Mudavadi urged the voters not to elect Raila Odinga as president in August 9, saying that the ODM boss would be controlled by President Kenyatta.

“Don’t elect someone who would easily be manipulated using a remote control,” he said.

Moses Wetang’ula, on his part, asked the Bahati constituents to come out in large numbers to elect Ruto as president in the upcoming elections.

“It’s not over until it’s over. So, don’t sit back [on August 9], and assume our candidate will automatically win. Come out in large numbers to vote, so that we send Raila Odinga home,” he said.

Kithure Kindiki, in his address, said: “President Kenyatta, we have respected your decision to support Raila Odinga. We are also urging you to extend the same respect to us by acknowledging that we have a right to support whoever we want; and in this case, it’s William Ruto.”