- The actions taken by President Ruto are similar to what Donald Trump did by rolling back Barack Obama’s legacy.
- Trump reversed Obama’s eight key policies including affirmative action in schools.
President William Ruto’s administration has moved to abandon policies and projects initiated by his predecessor Uhuru Kenyatta.
Since he took over office after winning the August 9, 2022, presidential election, Ruto moved to end subsidies on fuel that were being implemented by Uhuru to cushion Kenyans from the high cost of living.
While defending the move to remove subsidies, Ruto said:
"The subsidy would cost up to Sh3 billion per month and was not a long-term solution to the high cost of living in Kenya."
Other policies reversed by Ruto include returning Port operations to Mombasa and returning the control of the Kenya Meat Commission (KMC) to the Ministry of Agriculture from that of Defence.
Kazi Mtaani programme that offered job opportunities to youths in the country also came to an end under the Kenya Kwanza administration.
On the new education curriculum (CBC), President William Ruto formed a taskforce to review the system and gave recommendations that are being worked on.
Kenya Kwanza also disbanded the Special Service Unit (SSU) that was under the Director of Criminal Investigations (DCI) in a bid to end alleged extrajudicial killings.
The actions taken by President Ruto are similar to what Donald Trump did by rolling back Barack Obama’s legacy.
Trump reversed Obama’s eight key policies including affirmative action in schools.
But why is Ruto drifting away from Uhuru’s policies?
Policy and Governance expert Vincent Kimosop explains that Uhuru went for big infrastructural projects including the SGR and the Expressway that forced the country to go for external debts.
This, he says, is contrary to Ruto’s kind of leadership.
"Uhuru’s projects are visible investments that narrowed down to the Big 4 during his second and last term in office," Kimosop said.
"If you look at William Ruto’s vision, you will realise that he is focusing on empowerment, he wants the growth to be a shared responsibility," Kimosop added.
According to Kimosop, Ruto’s plans put a break to over-borrowing to fund big infrastructural projects.
Javas Bigambo, Governance specialist and communication political strategist thinks that Uhuru and Ruto differ in terms of leadership philosophy.
He explains that in a comparative review of the development projects approach by the two regimes, one gets a sense that President Ruto is unveiling development projects by giving reasons for them contrary to what his predecessor did.
"For example the issue of stopping subsidies, Ruto explained why he ended them and this was because they were not sustainable," Bigambo said.
He adds that Ruto is trying to rationalise various development projects with respect to overall economic impact.
"When you look at the Mau Summit Highway, what is the net effect as compared to the duelling of Mombasa to Malava road?’’ Bigambo asked.
Dr. Brian Mutie also shares the same views.
In an interview with the Star, the lawyer and governance expert said Ruto is drifting away from Uhuru’s legacy policies of his leadership style, geopolitics and balancing interests in terms of projects.
"In the case of Mau Sumit Highway, for example, President William Ruto could be trying to look for a better understanding about the whole negotiation and the viability of the project," Dr. Mutie noted.
He adds that the President is also trying to meet communal voting patterns in terms of their interests.
It remains to be seen if Ruto will achieve his plans of reviving the country’s economy and saving it from external debts through his strict policies.