Ruto tells Azimio leaders to stop politics of deceit, misusing youth

President William Ruto shares a light moment with the US Department of the Treasury's Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson at State House, Mombasa. [PCS]

President William Ruto has stepped up criticism of Azimio leaders accusing them of paying gullible youth to fight with the police during the protests that rocked parts of the country.

Ruto said a somber mood has engulfed the country as families continue to mourn their loved ones killed during the protests which he said were sponsored to the tune of hundreds of millions.

Speaking in Kilifi, Ruto said Azimio leaders were practising politics of deceit, adding that they schemed to finance anarchy and chaos in the country in pursuit of their selfish interests.

“They spent millions of shillings to plan the chaos and people died. The protests were schemes of a few leaders pursuing selfish interests using youth to cause chaos and anarchy.

“I tell them to stop the deceit and causing unnecessary confusion in the country. Violence has no place in the equation of our politics,” said Ruto at Karisa Maitha Grounds in Kilifi.

Ruto said that the government has allocated Sh2 billion to the Settlement Fund Trustee (SFT) to buy land to settle squatters in the region.

Ruto further said that in the Finance Act 2023/24, fish imports will be subjected to punitive taxes in a move aimed at supporting local fishermen.

He said the government had set aside Sh542 million to train and equip fishermen in the region.

Yesterday Ruto gave fishermen in Kilifi Sh190 million and announced that all 2,000 coxswains at the coast would be trained afresh.

Ruto said he has also stopped the subdivision and allocation of the Gala Kulalu Irrigation scheme to private firms.

At the same time, he said Sh800 million has been set aside to construct markets in Mtwapa, Kilifi, Malindi, and Magarini in Kilifi County.

The Head of State who is on the coast for a 5-day development tour started the process to give the stateless Pembas, whose ancestors come to Kenya in the 1930s, national identification cards.

Over 7,000 members of the Pemba tribe are expected to be issued with IDs.

During the event, Ruto issued IDs, birth certificates, and passports to 20 members of the Pemba community. He said the Pemba people will now legally access all government services.

‘’This is a new dawn for the Pemba people. From today they will be able to access education, health care, social protection, financial services, and the formal labour market,” Ruto said.

Shame Khamis, the Pemba community chairman, said that their marriages were also unrecognised under Kenyan law.

‘’I feel like I have been born today. For the past 67 years, I have lived my life will take a new twist because I will be able to participate and benefit like any other Kenyan,’’ Shame said.

He added: “For stateless children and youth, being ‘invisible’ can mean missing out on educational opportunities and being ignored by healthcare providers.”