Nairobi MPs have taken the battle over the next city governor to Deputy President William Ruto, demanding he stop trying to impose a candidate on them.
When four Central region MPs on Sunday endorsed Water CS Eugene Wamalwa as the Jubilee candidate For Nairobi’s top job, the crowded race got more complicated and drew in President Uhuru Kenyatta. Jubilee city MPs demanded he “stop” the DP from interfering with the politics of the capital.
Nairobi is the country’s jewel in the crown.
Yesterday Uhuru was to meet some Nairobi leaders to discuss the issue that has caused such a backlash in Jubilee and protests from Kikuyu leaders, including the Kikuyu Council of Elders, who dismissed the endorsement.
It is understood the President spoke to Ruto two days ago about the matter.
“The President is not happy with the turn of events,” a source familiar with the discussions told the Star.
On Monday, disgruntled MPs led by Starehe’s Maina Kamanda confronted Ruto at his office and demanded to know why he was endorsing an “outsider” for governor against ODM’s Evans Kidero.
They accused the DP of engineering the move by four Mt Kenya MPs to endorse Wamalwa as Jubilee’s candidate for Nairobi governorship in 2017.
Ruto has publicly said the capital city cannot be headed by a governor who is not from the country’s ruling coalition.
The MPs who announced support for Wamalwa at a church in Kiambu on Sunday are Ferdinand Waititu (Kabete), Jude Njomo (Kiambu, Kanini Kega (Kieni) and Mpuru Aburi (Tigania East).
But the city MPs told Ruto they believed he was behind the pronouncement. They complained he was antagonising other candidates by pushing central MPs to publicly declare Wamalwa the party’s preferred candidate.
“He was told that if this continues, the Kikuyus in Nairobi will consider their position, especially after next elections. He was also reminded that it is he who will need the community after the 2017 elections and not the other way round,” a politician present at the meeting said.
Ruto reportedly denied having engineered the endorsement of Wamalwa, saying some people were just throwing around his name.
The city Jubilee MPs are said to have later called President Uhuru, complaining of interference in city political affairs. The President, according to insiders, called Ruto and requested he go slow on city politics.
Former Cabinet ministers Musikari Kombo and Fred Gumo are the people behind the push for Wamalwa to get the Jubilee ticket for Nairobi governor.
Kombo reportedly tried to sell the idea to Uhuru when he and Wamalwa accompanied the President to Israel for a three-day state visit in February. The President was noncommittal.
Once they decided to dissolve New Ford Kenya and merge