Presidential running mates to face off in debate on Monday

Sunday July 16 2017

 Deputy President William Ruto (right) and Nasa presidential running mate Kalonzo Musyoka as a past function. Presidential running mates  face of in debate on July 17, 2017. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP

Deputy President William Ruto (right) and Nasa presidential running mate Kalonzo Musyoka as a past function. Presidential running mates face of in debate on July 17, 2017. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP  

By SAMWEL OWINO
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It is all systems go as eight presidential running mates are expected to face off with one another at Catholic University of Eastern Africa, Karen on Monday.

It is not, however, clear if Deputy President William Ruto would take part in the debate as earlier reports indicated that would not.

The chairman of the Steering Committee Organising Presidential Debates Wachira Waruru on Saturday told the Nation that preparations for the much-awaited event had been finalised.

“We invited them all and expect them to turn up tomorrow (Monday) although none has confirmed attendance,” Mr Waruru said.

DEBATE

“There is still time for them to confirm but as a committee, we are  prepared for the debate.”

Apart from Mr Ruto and his National Super Alliance counterpart Kalonzo Musyoka, other running mates are Mr Moses Marango for Mr Joseph Nyaga, Mr Titus N’getuny (Mr Abduba Dida), Mr Emmanuel Nzai (Dr Ekuru Aukot) Ms Miriam Mutua (Mr Michael Wainaina) and Mr Eliud Kariara (Mr Japheth Kavinga).

Last week, the steering committee postponed the presidential debate from July 10 to July 24 after President Kenyatta and National Super Alliance flagbearer Raila Odinga said they would not take part, citing matters to do with organisation.

WITHDRAWAL

Jubilee Party Secretary-General Raphael Tuju said the decision for the President’s withdrawal was taken because the debate was being organised “through advertisements in the media by unknown people”.

Debate organisers, however, dismissed claims, saying they had been in constant communication with the candidates and that teams attached to the presidential hopefuls had been regularly updated on the progress.

“We wish to clarify that members of the steering committee on the presidential debates have been in constant communication with the campaign teams even before the announcement was made in May,” the company said in the statement last week signed by Mr Waruru.

DEBATE ON

On Saturday, he maintained that the debate was on.

“The Presidential debate will also go on as planned. Nothing has changed” Mr Waruru told the Nation in Nairobi.

It the debate takes place, it will be aired live on all top channels.