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January 23, 2019

KIBISU KABATESI: Two-faced Ruto his own worst enemy


This political debt collector trajectory will consume Deputy President William Ruto. He’s desperate and panicky, striking at imaginary enemy shadows. The DP should know no deputy has immediately succeeded a President in Kenya since his nemesis Daniel arap Moi.

And to compete with your boss hardly a year in the second term is to attract the wrath of not only the incumbent by also mythical barbarians waiting in the wings to pounce. But drunk with raw ambition and thirst for power, Ruto does more harm than good to himself coveting imaginary political debts none owes him. Ruto’s a story of deeds done in bad faith that result in unintended consequences, for Ruto only sanctifies objects he’s the only immediate beneficiary of.

Under cover of calling in political debts, Ruto deftly wants to endear himself to the Kalenjin base and a growing hustler community he has popularised, as a victim of a power grab that he’s entitled to. He however ends up revealing an unpleasant deceitful persona when an unrestrained Ruto is clutching at any straw, even if it’s a rotten lie. ‘Yesterday Ruto’ disowns any claim to a political debt owed by “any Kenyan or community” at a church congregation, yet ‘Today Ruto’ recalls a debt only he remebers while among fellow politicians.

Ruto is seething, as he’s on a rebound from a bad political marriage with Central. You can tell it’s the end of Jubilee; if the music wars aren’t convincing, practically all Uhuru initiatives are opposed by party apparatchiks under Ruto in and out of Parliament. A rear-guard insurgency to take control of Jubilee Party and render Uhuru a lame duck is also in the works.

Talk of transferred aggression. The DP went to Western inebriated with bitter rejection to virtually insult the region with claims of a non-existent political debt incurred by presidential hopeful Musalia Mudavadi. Ruto claimed he not only surrendered the non-existent titles of Deputy Premier and Premier to Mudavadi and Raila Odinga, but also suffered stoically for them at the Hague in a vow of silence. He wants to be repaid in kind. Yet, Ruto didn’t suffer at all for either Musalia or Raila; he only repositioned himself.

First, his Hague legal defence never tired of blaming hirelings in PNU, to which his new friend Uhuru Kenyatta belonged. Not until Saturday has Ruto ever attributed the Hague arraignment to protection of the two for which he expects a reward. And I don’t think he wants any; raising the Hague is a ruse, reverse psychology to intimidate the Kikuyu.

Second, under the Nusu Mkate government Ruto craftily stabbed his ODM colleagues in the back by playing mole for his PNU hitherto tormentors. Yes, he sulked even after scooping the expansive Agriculture portfolio and would later engineer a rebellion against ODM disguised as Kalenjin community protest after being reprimanded in the maize scandal. Somehow Ruto skillfully uses graft scandals to politically invent himself.

Indeed, Ruto was only re-enacting the community protest motif that worked superbly for him when he dethroned Moi after 2002 and rallied support for Raila against Kibaki in 2007. The trick is still at work disguised as political debts to repaid by the Kikuyu, Luo and Luhya.

But third, Ruto is evasive on truth. If indeed he’s seeking debt payments on behalf of the Kalenjin, he snubbed a grand opportunity to repay the Luhya for standing with Moi for 24 years in 2002. He was instead part of an insurgent cabal that went for Uhuru in Kanu instead of Musalia. Come 2013, with connivance of some Central Kenya brokers, he instigated rejection of the Jubilee MoU where Uhuru had ceded presidential candidacy to Mudavadi.

Fourth, unknown to many, Uhuru owes his presidency to Mudavadi, and by extension so does Ruto. The succinct November 2012 MoU was legally bidding and had Mudavadi chosen to challenge the reneging of it in court, neither he nor Uhuru could have participated in the March 4, 2013 General Election. The unusual suspect beneficiary who desired such an outcome is Ruto, who would have gleefully filled the vacuum. It’s no surprise the UhuRuto political nuptial is wobbling, having been conceived in deceit.

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