Uhuru revives Mt Kenya political ties as Raila warms up to Ruto

Former president Uhuru Kenyatta. [Mose Sammy, Standard]

Former President Uhuru Kenyatta seems to be on a mission to revive his political ties at the grassroots in Mt Kenya region as his 2022 preferred presidential candidate Raila Odinga warms up to the Ruto administration.  

The fourth President of Kenya on Friday attended two burial ceremonies; in Nyeri and Nyandarua. He was at the funeral service of former police boss King'ori Mwangi in Nyeri before he left for the burial of wife to former Finance Minister Amos Kimunya.  

Uhuru has been avoiding the public limelight since he left office with the last time to be seen in public being November last year when he attended service at Full Gospel church in Mwingi Kitui county.  

While the former President steered clear of politics in Nyeri, he tore into the Kenya Kwanza administration in Nyandarua for what he termed as the tendency to gossip him with pretexts, justifications and issues that are neither here nor there, rather than focus on moving the country forward. 

"Nowadays I don't talk a lot I just sit and watch and sometimes I hold my head wondering whether to cry or to laugh but Kenya my home country," he said. 

"When I was in leadership I used to tell my fellow leaders that if you are a leader worth your salt, if you have been given a chance to steer the country; a worthy leader concentrates on the steering, focusing forward and not backwards because such a vehicle can only lead to a ditch," Uhuru said.  

He asked the leadership of the Kenya Kwanza administration to focus ahead and not look in the rear window as they would drive the country into a ditch.  

Uhuru was accompanied by Jubilee leaders including former Limuru MP Peter Mwathi who has been crisscrossing Kiambu county leading the onslaught on President William Ruto's administration for 'its punitive tax regime especially to Mt Kenya region.'

In December last year, Uhuru addressed a section of Azimio allied former MPs who visited Raila at his Karen home where he challenged the Mt Kenya region leadership to 'stand with the electorate and call out the Kenya Kwanza government for its punitive policies....' 

He said time had vindicated him for his support for Raila's presidential bid.  

Uhuru reiterated that he does not regret supporting the Azimio presidential flag bearer. "I knew why I supported Raila," he said.

"Always stand for the truth. I stood with my truth and opted for Raila because I knew him. People's representatives should provide leadership instead of being dictated by the wave," he told the leaders meeting in Karen

His remarks came in the wake of disquiet within Mt Kenya region politicians and the people over reallocation of funds meant for the region and the protests over the 54 kilometer Mau Mau road connecting Kiambu, Murang'a, Nyeri and Nyandarua counties.  

Uhuru revealed that he has been receiving calls from his friends informing him how businesses have been closed down noting that most of them belong to people from Mt Kenya region.  

His Friday's public appearance also came a day before a meeting between a section of Azimio leaders led by Kalonzo Musyoka (Wiper) and Martha Karua (Narc Kenya) who reportedly shared their displeasure that Raila's decision to declare interest in the African Union Commission chairperson, without informing them. 

"The leaders shared their dismay that Raila negotiated with President Ruto for the AU Commission chair job without informing them. A move that is tantamount to pursuing personal interests," a leader who attended the meeting told The Standard.  

Political pundits claim that Uhuru's decision to trace his roots in the region could have been jolted by Raila-Ruto's new camaraderie birthed by the AU job. 

"Uhuru and Raila have been buddies since 2018. Now the later's deal with Ruto will automatically disorient their friendship and the Azimio coalition where Raila is the party leader and Uhuru the chairperson of the council. It's a scheme by the President to isolate Uhuru by technically 'snatching' Raila," political analyst Charles Njoroge observed.  

According to Njoroge should the National Dialogue Committee (Nadco) report sail through Kalonzo will be in Parliament as the Opposition leader a move that will edge out Uhuru and the entire Azimio coalition. 

Meanwhile, government leaders led by Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua have announced that they are ready and willing to work with Uhuru.

Gachagua on Saturday reminisced how he was Uhuru's Personal Assistant, confidant and defender for 18 years saying they disagreed for only two years.  

The DP who addressed mourners at the burial of former police boss Mwangi said that the former president left before his arrival and expressed eagerness to meet Uhuru who he described as his friend, former boss and elder brother.  

"I instructed leaders from this region that I don't want to hear anyone attacking him verbally," Gachagua said. "I said let him retire peacefully. If I had met him, I would have told him, so." 

"I stayed with President Uhuru Kenyatta for 18 years as his PA as his confidant, as his defender. The years we stayed together as friends are 17. The ones we disagreed with are two.... The good outweighs the bad," he added. 

Mt Kenya leaders led by Nyeri Governor Mutahi Kahiga and Jubilee Nominated MP Sabina Chege said they were willing to share mbuzi (goat meat) with Uhuru and pleaded with him to invite them for a unity mission.