A vicious fight between Deputy President William Ruto and Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i yesterday exploded into the open.
The two have been engaged in serious fighting, which has been kept out of the public eye for months, and those aware of it yesterday told the Star that the battle is spiralling out of control.
According to multiple sources, the fights have involved multi-billion-shilling tenders being pushed by Ruto and his associates, which Matiang’i has refused to approve.
The DP’s spokesman, David Mugonyi, when contacted yesterday evening for a response about the tender row, responded furiously,”That’s nonsense.”
Ruto reportedly asked the CS to award the tender to other people after it was reported that National Youth Service (NYS) ran out of the required fabric.
peaking at Kenya Institute of Curriculum Development, Matiang’i, however, on Tuesday, firmly stated that the uniforms would be made by NYS.
Without naming the DP directly, the CS further revealed that a certain politician wanted in on the multi-billion tender explaining that it would not happen.
“Listen to me very carefully. We will not import police uniforms, go and write another 10 headlines. We will not import police uniforms from any country. We have to promote the local textile industry,” stated Matiang’i.
“The Inspector General of Police, the PS and myself have been under pressure by some quarters, and all manner of thieves, that we should import police uniforms.
“Listen to me very carefully. We will not import police uniforms, go and write another 10 headlines. We will not import police uniforms from any country. We have to promote the local textile industry,” Matiang’i said.
The Standard yesterday reported that police have not been able to get their new uniforms because the fabric is unavailable.
But Matiang’i dismissed the claims, insisting that the government has already paid NYS Rivatex and companies in the Export Processing zones to make the uniforms.
“We will not import police uniforms. No amount of pressure, manipulation or anything will change that position. That style of life has come to an end in Kenya. It has come to an end and no one is going to live that way.
“Sasa wewe na wakora wako mahali mlikubaliana mtanunua uniform mtaenda muwaambie na muwaeleze kwamba hatutanunua uniform kutoka kwingine,” Matiang’i said. This loosely translates to “You and your crooks, wherever you agreed that you will import police uniforms, go back and tell them that we are not importing.”
Ruto and Matiang’i also clashed in February this year after over a multi-billion-shilling tender to supply arms.
The police department had floated a Sh3 billion restricted tender for the weapons. Inspector General of Police Joseph Boinett then drafted a letter recommending that a tender be awarded to a company in Eastern Europe.
“When the CS saw it, he refused to sign and instead asked the IG to provided minutes from the National Security Advisory Council and the National Security Council supporting the recommendation.
“The DP then asked Matiang’i why he was sitting on the tender papers but Matiang’i said he was waiting for the minutes, which never came,” a government official aware of the incident said.
It is also understood that sometime this year the DP asked Matiang’i to approve a deal in which some “investors” wanted to develop prison land. The prison is located in Rift Valley on a huge piece of land.