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PAYING THE PRICE

List of pro-Ruto casualties gets longer in Jubilee war

So far 10 politicians have paid the price for standing with Deputy President and the list is likely to grow as the crackdown continues.

In Summary
  • President Uhuru Kenyatta had for months been warning Ruto and his allies against politicking instead focusing on development. 
  • Kenyatta has been firing salvos in the direction of his deputy, missiles that have so far consumed a number of Ruto’s 2022 brigade.
Senate Deputy Majority leader Kipchumba Murkomen, who was removed with other Ruto allies.
OUT: Senate Deputy Majority leader Kipchumba Murkomen, who was removed with other Ruto allies.
Image: FILE:

Associating with Deputy President William Ruto is proving to be a costly affair as those who once boldly walked that path are watching their careers come crashing down.

So far, eight politicians have paid the price for standing with the Deputy President and the list is likely to grow as the crackdown on his continues as they have been called disloyal to President Uhuru Kenyatta.

For months, the President has been warning Ruto and his allies against politicking instead of focussing on developing the country.

 

Kenyatta, the picture of a man fed up, has been firing salvos in the direction of his deputy, missiles that so far have struck men and women in number in Ruto's 2022 brigade.

Former Sports Cabinet Secretary Rashid Echesa was the first to be consumed by the Uhuru’s fire, which now has spread to Parliament.

Former Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mwangi Kiunjuri - who was the face of Ruto’s 2022 campaigns in Mt. Kenya and was touted as a possible running mate - lost his job early this year.

The sacking came as Kiunjuri was seen to be getting closer to the Deputy President in matters of Mt Kenya politics.

Kiunjuri was among politicians who were at The Hague to accompany Ruto during his no-case-to-answer oral submissions at the ICC where he faced charges in connection with the 2007-08 post-election violence.

Kiunjuri was said to have snubbed the La Mada Hotel meetings where Mt Kenya top brass including Cabinet Secretaries  were alleged to be meeting to plot how tame and exlude Ruto.

The Senate has lately become the centre of President Kenyatta's purge with top Ruto allies left politically wounded.

 

On May 11, the Jubilee party held a Senate Parliamentary Group meeting at State House that was snubbed by senators allied to the DP.

However, during the meeting, the pro-Kenyatta axis staged a coup that kicked out former Senate Majority leader Kipchumba Murkomen and Majority Whip Susan Kihika.

Days later, Kenyatta turned his arsenal on Senate Deputy Speaker Kithure Kindiki – an ardent supporter of the DP.

Like Kiunjuri, Kindiki was  also seen as a possible Ruto running mate in 2022.

Immediately after the handshake and subsequent Building Bridges Initiative, the lawmakers flagrantly rebelled against whatever was being pushed by President Uhuru Kenyatta.

Just like the Deputy President, the senators countered President Kenyatta on Twitter and even bashed a number of government policies on the floor of the House.

On Tuesday, Samson Cherargei (chair of Justice Committee), Christopher Lang'at (chair Education) and John Kinyua (chair Devolution) joined the growing list of list of politicos who are paying the price - they were removed from the committees' leadership.

The axe is now expected to fall in the National Assembly where more Ruto-leaning politicians will pay the price of association.

Already, the party is gearing up for a Parliamentary Group meeting to deliberate on what it terms instilling discipline in the party.

Political analyst Joseph Mutua said the legislators deserved removal from leadership positions in Parliament.

“What they are getting is fair because the party had its expectations of them but they chose to do the opposite,” he said.

Mutua further said President Kenyatta, who is the party leader, had no coice but to remove them to pursue his agenda without interruption.

“If they had been left in those positions, these legislators would have been a stumbling block to Uhuru’s agenda,” he said.

The President would not allow people he had put in various offices to sabotagehis work, he said. "The President wants to work with the people who will help him deliver on his promises," Mutua said.

Political and communications strategist Advice Mundalo said Ruto's allies ought to chamion the ideals of th party leader. He said they should be mindful of Machiavelli's advice: "Never outshine your master."

“A party leadership can only be centralised on one leader at a time. It was wayward of the Tangatanga brigade to claim allegiance to the deputy party leader and even threaten to have numbers. One would question their intent," he said.

Mundalo added it would be political suicide for the President to keep working with people who were openly working in the opposite direction, especially in House leadership.

“The Tangatanga-allied group has openly punctured the President's agenda, such as the lifestyle audit plan, the war on corruption, the BBI process and the Big Four  agenda to mention a few," he said.

“They have openly attacked Raila Odinga with whom their party leader has been working since the Handshake,” he added.

Mundalo said it was laughable that Ruto's allies cry that their dismissal from office was unconstitutional for lack of public participation. “The same process that ejected them [voting] is the same one that injected them into the offices they held,” he said.