Just a week after President Uhuru Kenyatta gave MPs seemingly allied to his Deputy William Ruto a dressing down over persistent politicking, the lawmakers appeared to defy him as they held rallies across the country.
Interestingly, Ruto who on Friday vowed to heed his boss’s clarion call to go slow on politics, led MPs in holding rallies in parts of Western Kenya.
On Friday, Ruto struck a conciliatory tone, promising to tone down political rhetoric. “We know where we started. We know our role in uniting Kenyans and bringing development. We are behind you 100 per cent and we are not changing our stand. I give you my personal commitment that I will make sure as your deputy that these other leaders don’t go astray. You can even see they behaved well today,” said Ruto.
Politics of tribalism
But on Saturday, the DP led his brigade in rallies in Bungoma and Trans Nzoia counties where he commissioned several development projects. Addressing the congregation after lighting streetlights at Gambogi market in Hamisi sub-county, Ruto said time for engaging in politics was over and it was time to deliver development and services to the electorate.
Ruto said he has no time to waste on empty political rhetoric, but was committed to serve the electorate by delivering development.
Politicians who accompanied the DP included MPs Benjamin Washiali (Mumias East), Charles Gimose (Hamisi) and former Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale.
And in Kisii county, Interior Cabinet secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i was attending a rally where MPs present endorsed him to contest the presidency come 2022.
Matiang’i, who also supervises other ministries did not respond to the calls, but said he was overwhelmed by the trust bestowed on him by the leaders.
Nyamira Governor John Nyagarama told Matiang’i to prepare to represent the community in the fight for the country’s top leadership after President Uhuru Kenyatta.
And speaking in yet another rally in Vihiga county yesterday, Ruto said Jubilee had strived to change how politics is conducted by merging different tribal political outfits to unite Kenyans.
“We do not want to be taken back to the era of the politics of tribalism and division. In Jubilee, we do not tolerate lies; when we say it, we mean it because we are a responsible leadership,” added Ruto. Bumula MP Mwambu Mabonga said: “As Jubilee strives to bring this country together, there are those among us who want to tear apart our fabric of unity”.
Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka, former Jubilee party leader David Murathe and Kitui Senator Enock Wambua were at Ngewa PCEA church in Githunguri sub-county yesterday where they defended the President and urged those in different political camps to respect him.
Wambua said politicians should take care lest they tear the country apart adding that leaders should respect President Uhuru “otherwise the country will be punished by God”.
Murathe said those calling on Jubilee secretary general Raphael Tuju to resign were ignorant of the party constitution. “They should know that Tuju was appointed by the President and they should also realise that the party constitution stipulates that one has to serve for three years before leaving office. Moreover, if they are so interested in the party, we can leave it to them. Even Wiper is a party,” he said.
Other leaders who accompanied Kalonzo include Ben Momanyi (Borabu), Stephen Mule of Matungulu and his Embakasi counterpart Mawathe Musili.
Elsewhere, Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko, Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria, former Kiambu Governor William Kabogo and former Laikipia senatorial aspirant Maina Njenga announced the formation of “Team Wanjiku”.
They castigated Tanga Tanga and Kieleweke political factions for heightening the political mood in the country yet commoners continue to be subjected to oppressive policies.
“Some leaders in the country have become thugs, but we have you…we will support you to stamp out boy child problems. Do you eat from anyone’s house? In Kenya, some people are scheming to continue suppressing the common man,” said Kuria.
Orange Democratic Movement also joined the bandwagon with rallies in different parts of the country drumming up support for their leader Raila Odinga.
Speaking in Siaya on Saturday, Senate Leader of Minority James Orengo said the Building Bridges Initiative would help Raila clinch the presidency in 2022.