After hosting Raila Odinga, DP Ruto off to Nyanza

A day after he hosted President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition leader Raila Odinga for lunch, Deputy President William Ruto will land in Nyanza tomorrow to commission road projects.

It will be the first time the DP will appear in a public event in Luo-Nyanza since the 2017 general election.

Ruto has given Kisumu, Siaya and Homa Bay counties a wide berth and has only been visiting neigbouring Kisii, Nyamira and the two Kuria constituencies in Migori.

Last month, Migori MPs led by Woman Representative Pamela Odhiambo criticised the DP for avoiding the other parts of Migori as he visited Kuria, Kisii and Nyamira.

Friday’s lunch with President Kenyatta and Raila came at an opportune time for Ruto’s handlers, who were mulling over the kind of reception he would get in the key opposition strongholds.

Opposition leaders and supporters in Nyanza believe the DP is opposed to the Uhuru-Raila handshake. The lunch could change the narrative, amid whispers that the two leaders could be up to something.

But keen observers are questioning the timing of his first visit to Luo Nyanza. Just last week, Baringo Senator Gideon Moi made a two-day visit to Homa Bay where he was showered with praises by local MPs and ODM leaders. Ruto and Gideon are battling for supremacy in the Rift Valley. Both harbour presidential ambitions.

“It is good Ruto is finally coming to Luo Nyanza. As Deputy President, he is free to visit any part of the country any time. But I believe he was rattled by Gideon’s successful visit to Homa Bay,” said an ODM MP.

Yesterday, Homa Bay leaders welcomed Ruto. “He is welcome to Homa Bay, although I am out of the country,” said Woman Representative Gladys Wanga.

Homa Bay County Commissioner Irungu Macharia told Sunday Standard arrangements for the tour were complete.

In Migori, Mr Ruto will be hosted by Governor Okoth Obado. He will launch the Kehancha-Migori-Muhuru road and address roadside rallies.

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