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Murathe warns Ruto of bruising battle as Kenya Kwanza leaders slam Uhuru

 

Jubilee Party Vice Chairman David Murathe during the Azimio la Umoja National Convention on 10th December 2021 at Moi International sports complex Kasarani Stadium. [Boniface Okendo, Standard]

 

Jubilee Vice-chairman David Murathe has told Deputy President William Ruto to brace for bare-knuckle campaigns when President Uhuru Kenyatta sets out to popularise Azimio presidential candidate Raila Odinga.

Mr Murathe, who is also the Azimio la Umoja One Kenya Council vice-chairman said the president will lay bare the cause of rifts between him and the DP.

“People will get to know why President Uhuru fell out with Ruto, it is not a secret and he will tell Kenyans everything,” he said.

“Very soon the President will hit the road running and he will tell Kenyans why he prefers Raila over Ruto,” Mr Murathe said during a funds drive in aid of St Kizito Makema Catholic Church in Webuye East constituency yesterday.

He said it was disrespectful for the DP to engage in war of words with the President.

Mr Murathe disclosed that at some point, the president contemplated replacing the DP with Defence Cabinet Secretary Eugene Wamalwa, but he (Ruto) did not resign as expected even after falling out with his boss.

“When TNA was formed, Wamalwa was the preferred running mate for Uhuru but due to the clashes witnessed in 2008, it was resolved that we get a Kalenjin and Ruto was picked,” he said.

He wondered why Ruto has not been bold enough to resign like Jaramogi Oginga did when he fell out with the founding father Mzee Jomo Kenyatta.

“Ruto continues to ‘eat’ public funds and use public vehicles while doing nothing. For four years, he has been idle and even recently he insulted the president,” said the Jubilee vice chairman.

He said the DPs perceived huge backing in central Kenya is a mirage. “Kikuyus will milk you dry and dump you at the eleventh hour,” he said.

The Jubilee vice chairman urged Kenyans to support Raila’s presidential quest because he is a selfless leader who puts the interests of the country and the people first.

“Raila worked with the late President Daniel Moi between 1997 and 2002 when Kanu and LDP had a merger, he later declared Kibaki tosha. After the 2007/08 post-election violence, Raila had a handshake with Kibaki and peace was restored. In 2017, Raila had another handshake with President Uhuru,” he said.

Mr Wamalwa who hosted Mr Murathe said it was shocking to see Ruto dismiss the handshake during the burial of the late former President Mwai Kibaki in Othaya on Saturday.

“He belittled the handshake during the solemn occasion where we were paying last respects to our fallen hero Mwai Kibaki who initiated a handshake with the former Prime Minister.  Ruto was one of the hardliners who did not want the handshake when he was with Raila,” he said.

“If he (Ruto) does not believe in the handshake, he must know many other Kenyans cherish it, whatever you said DP Ruto was in bad taste,” argued the CS.

Mr Wamalwa urged Ruto to prepare to concede defeat and embrace a handshake in case Raila beats him in August 9 elections.

Meanwhile, Kenya-Kwanza Alliance leaders have turned the heat on President Kenyatta over claims that his deputy has failed to support his administration.

Speaking at Kapsabet showgrounds, during the thanks giving ceremony for Nandi Governor Stephen Sang, ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi, said that instead of giving a message of hope to Kenyans grappling with harsh economic times, the president used Labour Day celebrations to lament over his deputy.

Mr Mudavadi slammed the president for failing to take control of the government.

“He cannot stand up on the Labour Day and blame his deputy for the high cost of living. The president must ask himself when did he call for a Cabinet meeting to deliberate on the economic situation and way forward,” he stated.

Governor Sang said that the government delivered during the first term but things started falling apart when the President sidelined Ruto and delegated some government functions to Cabinet Secretaries.

He exonerated the DP from blame on the failures of the government, saying that he was not given a chance to do his job.

The governor claimed that Uhuru instead chose to clip Ruto’s powers.

“The president has often complained about his deputy. But for five years he worked with him on transforming Kenya, and this is what earned them the second term. However, in this second term, Raila Odinga had been the President’s preferred de facto deputy,” Sang said.

“You (President Kenyatta) transferred the functions of the DP to other people, and now he blames the DP for the failures of his own doing,” he added.

National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi said that the president let the Jubilee Party, that had more than 200 MPs to collapse and now is now desperate to revive it.

“It is late for people to start complaining now. I have moved around listening to opinions of the people in many parts of the country as a spokesperson of my people. The people I have consulted are so many, and they told me the winning formula is here (Kenya Kwanza). I then had talks with the Kenya Kwanza leaders and agreed to work together,” he said.

Vihiga Women Rep Beatrice Adagala said that the Kenya Kwanza leadership would ensure economic transformation if elected in August 9 General Election.

Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago also attended the event among other leaders.

And speaking in Nakuru yesterday, Mr Ngunjiri said President Kenyatta’s speech during the Labour Day celebrations on May 1 was a pointer to simmering anger over failures in his administration.

“Nothing good comes out of anger. What the President displayed in public is dangerous for this country especially now that we are heading to the General Election,” he said.

The MP noted that the speech laid bare the President’s frustrations after failing to achieve his aspirations during his second term in office.

Elsewhere, Muslim clerics from Western have urged President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto to bury the hatchet for the sake of peace.

Speaking during Eid Ul Fitr celebrations at Jamia Mosque and Islamic Centre in Kakamega town, yesterday, the clerics said it is high time the two leaders reconciled ahead of the August 9 General Election.

Kakamega County Council of Imams and Preacher's chairman Sheikh Idriss Muhammed warned that it is not good for the President and his deputy to engage in bitter verbal exchange as millions of Kenyans watch.

“I would like to ask them to have a handshake and forget about their differences which could split the country,” said Sheikh Idriss. 

He urged politicians to exercise tolerance and preach peace.

“We all remember the genesis of handshake between President Uhuru and ODM leader Raila Odinga, the Head of State remains a symbol of national unity and must be respected, we urge DP Ruto to respect the president and stop the bitter exchanges,” said the cleric.

Reports by Sharon Wanga, Lynn Kolongei, Edward Kosut, Kennedy Gachuhi, Benard Lusigi, Omelo Juliet and Brian Kisanji.