The government has started running a campaign to popularise the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) report, the Saturday Nation has established.
However, the new push seems to sideline Deputy President William Ruto and his allies, who are perceived to be lukewarm if not outright opposed to the initiative.
According to our inquiries, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i and his Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho have been tasked to mobilise the government machinery to support the BBI report.
The report was publicly unveiled on Wednesday by President Uhuru Kenyatta and former Prime Minister Raila Odinga and is the fruit of their March 9, 2018 handshake.
Part of the efforts to popularise the document involves whipping parastatal chiefs, opinion shapers, elected and nominated leaders as well as former leaders to support the report.
County commissioners who spoke to the Saturday Nation in confidence said that they had been instructed to only work with leaders who have been supporting the BBI all along.
Cabinet secretaries and principal secretaries have also been instructed to join the BBI campaigns, senior sources at the Office of the President said.
On Friday, the team held a meeting in Kirinyaga, the home county of PS Kibicho, attended by thousands of BBI supporters mobilised from various parts of the country.
Some of the delegates who attended the Kirinyaga event had been housed in hotels in Nairobi since the launch of the BBI report on Wednesday at the Bomas of Kenya.
The 4,700 delegates who attended the BBI launch were mobilised by county commissioners who were instructed to only nominate “BBI champions”.
During the launch, each of the delegates was given Sh5,000 for out-of-pocket expenses, such as accommodation and meals.
The DP and his allies accuse Mr Kibicho of being the architect of efforts to embarrass him and whittle down his political support through the PS’s control of the internal security apparatus.
However, during Kirinyaga meeting, CS Matiang’i absolved the PS from any blame.
“I take full responsibility for any action by the security team, never touch my PS, don’t blame him for any political problem within and without government,” he said.
In Maaland, Mr Kenyatta has drafted Kajiado governor Joseph ole Lenku and Environment CS Keriako Tobiko to lead the campaigns for the BBI report.
Mr Lenku says President Kenyatta’s legacy will largely be influenced by how unified he will leave Kenya when his term ends come 2022.