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William Ruto prayer rally still on, clerics say

Friday May 3 2019

Deputy President William Ruto

Deputy President William Ruto (centre) arrives at Molo Secondary School in Molo on April 28, 2019 for a church service hosted by Akorino Church. Some church leaders are organising a prayer rally for him. PHOTO | FILE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

NDUNG'U GACHANE
By NDUNG'U GACHANE
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A section of the clergy in Murang’a, whose plans to host Deputy President William Ruto at a prayer rally aborted, forcing them to reschedule to March 11, have said that the event is still on.

Bishop Stephen Maina of Full Time Winners Gospel Church said the steering committee is almost through with planning for the rally, even after withdrawal of ACK and Catholic bishops.

The bishop said that despite three ACK bishops and one from the Catholic church pulling out, the rest are still engaged. He sought to downplay the fallout, saying the church community is still united.

“It would be wrong and misinforming to state that the church is divided. We’re only having a difference of opinion, but we’re one church. You may see the bishops at the prayer rally,” he told the Nation on phone.

2022 ELECTIONS

Some leaders, however, read political intrigues behind the prayer meeting, alleging a plan to instal Mr Ruto as Mt Kenya’s favourite for him to gain political mileage.

Gatanga MP Nduati Ngugi wondered why the invitation was not extended to all leaders in Murang’a nor their participation sought.

He told the Nation that he learnt about the first prayer rally, which was to be held on April 27, through the media.

“This is political rally aimed at campaigning for the Deputy President. I should have been invited because I’m also a member of the community in Murang’a,” he said.

NO POLITICS

County Assemblies Forum Central region representative Charles Mwangi echoed similar sentiments, claiming a section of Tanga Tanga (pro-Ruto) leaders had hatched a plan to instal the DP as Mt Kenya kingpin.

“We understand that some Tanga Tanga leaders in conjunction with greedy church leaders want to instal Dr Ruto as Mt Kenya kingpin to earn him political mileage. They should stop their business and let Kenyans decide when the time comes,” he said.

However, Bishop Maina maintained that the prayer rally has nothing to do with politics. He said that no other politician will be allowed to speak apart from the Deputy President.

“We will have over 150 elected leaders attending the event, but you can take this to the bank, no politician will address the prayer rally and the programme, which I will share with you later, will only be run by the church leaders,” Mr Maina said.

If Dr Ruto attends the prayer rally, he will have fulfilled a promise he made to the clergy when they paid him a courtesy call at his Karen home last year on July 17.