I cannot work with raila in 2017-William Ruto
Deputy President William Ruto has ruled out any possibility of a deal with Cord leader Raila Odinga ahead of 2017, saying Raila couldn’t win.
Ruto told a meeting of 2,000 Kalenjin professionals at his Karen residence last Sunday it was impossible to teamup with Raila again, “as the coalition will be taking the people of Rift Valley nowhere”.
“When you do your own analysis of the politics, do you see a Raila team ever winning? We must tell our people we will not go that way again as it will lead us nowhere. In Jubilee we are closer to power,” Ruto said to thunderous cheers.
The Star has listened to a recording of Ruto’s remarks.
On Sunday, when he held the mass meeting, Ruto had snubbed a State House media event and scheduled 9am address by President Uhuru Kenyatta. The President was to announce a Cabinet reshuffle, changes in government and discuss the teachers’ strike.
The Deputy President had refused to appear unless his suspended Cabinet allies were reinstated after being cleared of graft charges. He also insisted his list of other appointees be accepted.
The reshuffle and appointments have been put off.
Ruto joined Uhuru for an 8pm address about the strike.
Some URP MPs openly accuse Uhuru’s TNA of abandoning Ruto to the ICC, and some of the region’s leaders have been asking Ruto to create a Plan B. As one MP put it: “We have no guarantee that TNA will back us in 2022.”
But the DP told his Kalenjin supporters in Nairobi the easiest way to ascend to power is to stick with his deal with President Uhuru Kenyatta — supporting Uhuru in 2017 so the President would back him in 2022.
Ruto told the meeting, which was not attended by politicians, that he is the brains behind the planned merger of his URP Party and Uhuru’s TNA to form the Jubilee Alliance Party. That will ensure “all votes are locked in one basket,” he said.
Ruto supported Raila in the 2007 disputed elections in which the DP became minister for Agriculture in the coalition government. He later bolted from ODM after Raila refused to replace him with Musalia Mudavadi and make him Deputy Prime Minister.
On Sunday Ruto said Uhuru did not need JAP to win the next elections but Kalenjins need assurance the Mt Kenya region will reciprocate by voting for him (Ruto) in 2022.
He urged his supporters to register, turn out in large numbers and vote for Uhuru. He told them to ignore those peddling propaganda that Kalenjins have been “duped” into supporting Uhuru and when his (Ruto’s) turn comes, they will reject him.
“Let me clear the air on this issue of URP and Jubilee and the 2017 elections. I am now somewhat mature in politics, I have organized politics with [former President Daniel arap] Moi then the other one [ODM] in 2007. I am the one who registered JAP,” Ruto said.
With JAP, success is assured but it’s necessary to have all Jubilee Alliance votes in one basket, the DP said. “We should not let the votes be fragmented.”
“In 2017, we will vote for Uhuru because we are in government now and we will be assured of being in government again. This is what we must tell our people,” Ruto said.