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William Ruto should retire with Uhuru, says David Murathe

Thursday December 27 2018

Jubilee party chairman David Murathe

Jubilee party vice chairman David Murathe (left) with Amani National Congress leader Musalia Mudavadi at the Maragoli Cultural Festival in Mbale, Vihiga County, on December 26, 2018. The leaders hinted at a political pact between the Luhya community and Mt Kenya region. PHOTO | ISAAC WALE | NATION MEDIA GROUP 

DERICK LUVEGA
By DERICK LUVEGA
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A close ally of President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday said the Kikuyu community does not have an MoU with anyone regarding the 2022 elections.

Jubilee vice chairman David Murathe made the remarks in Vihiga during the 39th Maragoli cultural celebrations held at Municipal Grounds, Mbale, in a move that could antagonise Deputy President William Ruto who is hoping for support from President Uhuru Kenyatta when he retires in 2022.

Mr Murathe said Mr Kenyatta and Mr Ruto had already led the government for two terms and should both retire after serving as President and Deputy President respectively.

Leaders, among them ANC leader Musalia Mudavadi Devolution Cabinet Secretary Mr Eugene Wamalwa and Cotu boss Francis Atwoli and hundreds of locals attended the annual event that is usually celebrated on December 26.

"If he (William Ruto) has an MoU with Uhuru Kenyatta, then that was an agreement between two individuals," said Mr Murathe.

SAFEGUARD MT KENYA

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He added: "If you (Ruto) have led with Uhuru for two terms, what else do you want. We don't know someone who will guard us but we know someone who will break us. We will take someone who will safeguard Mt Kenya."

The Jubilee politician, who was attending a public function in Vihiga for the first time, said the party had no presidential candidate. He further said there was no debt as Mr Uhuru and Mr Ruto had shared the government equally.

Other leaders at the well-attended event included former Mukurueini MP Kabando wa Kabando, Bungoma Senator Moses Wetang'ula, Governors Wilber Ottichilo (Vihiga), Kivutha Kibwana (Makueni) and Wycliffe Wangamati (Bungoma).

The MPs were Ferdinand Wanyonyi (Kwanza), George Aladwa (Makadara), Eseli Simiyu (Tongaren), Alfred Agoi (Sabatia), Beatrice Adagala (Vihiga County), Ayub Savula (Lugari) and Mr Ernest Ogesi (Vihiga).

Mr Paul Otuoma, former Funyula MP, also attended. Mr Murathe said, together with Mr Kabando, they were in the county to assess the unity of the Luhya community.

"We are here today to read your body language and see whether you are united. We urge you to merge your parties (Ford Kenya and ANC) into one then we can talk," said Mr Murathe, a sign that the two communities could reach a political deal ahead of the 2022 polls.

POLITICAL ALLIANCE

He said his sister is married in Teso and daughter in Mumias, a hint that came closer to political alliance with his in-laws.

The politician said it was time Mr Ruto retires together with President Kenyatta. He said section 148 of the Constitution says no one should serve as President for more than two terms.

Section 148(8) states: A person shall not hold office as Deputy President for more than two terms.

But the same law does not bar a Deputy President from running for the presidency. Mr Murathe took issue with Mr Ruto for opposing the referendum push even before the Jubilee party takes a position.

Recently in Bungoma, Mr Ruto and his allies expressed opposition over the push for a referendum.

But on Wednesday, Mr Murathe said: "He is going around opposing the referendum. Jubilee is yet to take a position. What is he opposing yet there is no question."

SUPPORT HANDSHAKE

And as a pointer on support for the handshake between President Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga, Mr Murathe added: "Uhuru said in Kisumu we must change the Constitution to accommodate all to ensure inclusion. Raila has a following that must be accommodated in government."

Mr Kabando said he and Mr Murathe had not attended the event by accident. He hinted that a political pact between the two communities could be in the offing.

"Ukiona vyaelea, just vimeundwa," Mr Kabando said in Kiswahili. He added: "The Luhya have achieved their space in national politics. Your leaders have helped in supporting our people and development."

This is even as Mr Murathe recalled the unfulfilled deal with Mr Mudavadi between Mr Kenyatta and Mr Ruto in 2013 and hinted this could be the time to fulfil it.

And on his part, Mr Kabando said: "We recognise the leadership of this community. Eugene (Wamalwa) said recently that being vice president does not guarantee that you will be president. If we see that the Luhya are united, we will listen to you."