Kalenjin Elders move to reconcile DP, Governor Ruto ahead of 2017 polls
The Kalenjin Council of Elders (Myoot) says it is ready to reconcile Rift Valley political leaders ahead of the 2017 General Elections.
The elders said that the perceived political division between Deputy President William Ruto-led faction and Bomet Governor Isaac Ruto and Baringo Senator Gideon Moi faction is unhealthy for the vote-rich region.
The rift between the two factions has been catalysed by the ongoing Kericho Senatorial by-elections campaigns with DP Ruto’s Jubilee Party throwing its weight behind youthful Aaron Cheruiyot and Gideon Moi’s KANU and Governor Ruto’s Mashinani Party of Kenya supporting seasoned politician Paul Sang.
Though the political differences between the DP and former President Daniel Moi’s son Gideon Moi have not been pronounced in the past, there has been substantial supremacy battles between the two to control the Rift Valley voting bloc.
The DP’s differences with Bomet Governor Ruto, however, date back to 2014 during the Governor’s Pesa Mashinani referendum push that sought to increase county allocations.
Addressing a press conference at Reformed Church of East Africa in Eldoret on Tuesday, the elders – drawn from all the Kalenjin sub-tribes – called on the leaders to swallow their pride and reconcile to engage in constructive politics.
Council of Elders Chairman James Lukwo said there was need for the community to remain united.
The elders regretted that some leaders have resorted to abusive language especially in the ongoing campaigns for the Kericho by-election, something they termed as a bad precedent.
Chairman Emeritus of Kalenjin Council of Elders Major (Rtd.) John Seii, however, stated that the political fissures do not represent divisions in the Kalenjin Community saying the council will not support any candidate in the forthcoming Kericho Senatorial by-elections as a way of showing reconciliation.