Deputy President William Ruto has finally come out to break his silence after suspending all public rallies mid this month amidst the rising COVID-19 infections.
Hours after President Uhuru Kenyatta announced a 30-day ban on all political gatherings to curb the third wave of the coronavirus on March 13, 2021, DP Ruto took to social media to announce that he had hence suspended all public engagements.
Besides statements and press releases, not much has been heard or seen of the vocal DP since he took the backseat, thereby eliciting questions from a section of Kenyans online.
DP Ruto, however, on Thursday held an interview with Radio Citizen during which he sought to assure the country that he is very much fine.
He stated that his brief hiatus from the limelight was in line with government directives against public gatherings, further urging Kenyans to take the vaccine.
“Mimi niko mzima…tuliamua kusitisha mikutano ya hadhara kutokana na changamoto za corona…chanjo tulianza na wale watumishi ambao wako mstari wa mbele, haingekuwa mzuri kama mimi nimechanjwa na daktari ambaye yuko mstari wa mbele hana chanjo,” he said.
“Ni vyema ya kwamba kila Mkenya unapopata nafasi ya kupata mchanjo…ni kizuizi kikubwa sana ya kupata maradhi haya yanayoletwa na corona. Na mimi ikifika nafasi yangu, wakati itafika kiwango cha wale tunaofanya kazi hizi zingine, mimi ntakuwa mstari wa mbele pamoja na rais na mawaziri, kwa sababu tunataka kila Mkenya apate chanjo ndio tuweze kurudi katika hali ya kuendesha kazi zetu.”
DP Ruto also gave the clearest indication yet that he might soon leave the Jubilee Party and formally join the newly-launched United Democratic Alliance (UDA) that has been linked to him since its inception.
This he stated was because of unnamed individuals within the ruling party bent on frustrating him as well as his allies.
According to the DP, the removal of Elgeyo Marakwet Senator Kipchumba Murkomen as Senate Majority Leader and his Nakuru counterpart as Senate Majority Whip were politically motivated and orchestrated by the same individuals.
He alleged that these select few individuals are trying to sabotage the Jubilee agenda and turn it into a tribal party, adding that when push comes to shove he will head on to UDA and help transform it into a national party ahead of the 2022 General Elections.
“Wale ambao walikuwa wanatugawanya katika Jubilee…wale walikuwa wanafurusha watu…’kamati hii, hawa watu hatuwataki, fukuzeni’…’pale leader of majority, fukuzeni’…’pale Susan Kihika chief whip fukuza kwa sababu ni rafiki ya mtu fulani’…haya ni mambo ambayo hayawezi kutusaidia. Hii mipango yote, kufukuzana na kugawanya Wakenya huku kwote…nguvu hizi zote kama tungekuwa tunazitumia kuendesha Big 4, tungekuwa saa hizi na nafasi ya kazi kwa vijana, tungekuwa tumetatua tatizo ya chakula, tungekuwa tumetimiza wajibu wetu kwa mambo ya Universal Health Coverage,” he stated.
“Mimi nimechaguliwa kwa Jubilee lakini tumekuwa na UDA…tukienda mbele wale ambao wanatusukuma nje ya Jubilee kwa kufukuza watu ndani ya chama ikifika sehemu tutakuwa na mpango mbadala.”
He added: “Ikifika sehemu hatuelewani tutajipanga na UDA kwa sababu ni chama tunajua na sera moja kwa sababu kimekuwa ndani ya Jubilee. Ukitaka kutatua kero za taifa lazima uwe na gari la kitaifa, ikifika tunatumia UDA tutakifanya kiwe chama cha kitaifa. Kuna watu wanataka kufanya Jubilee chama cha kikabila na wakifanya hivo basi UDA tutakijenga kiwe chama cha kitaifa.”
At the same time, the DP termed calls for his impeachment and removal as Jubilee Deputy Party Leader as a plot to derail development in the country and motivated by selfish gains.
He further stated that the Jubilee government led by President Uhuru Kenyatta achieved most of its campaign promises during the first term but got sidetracked during the second term.
DP Ruto also downplayed his perceived sidelining from Cabinet activities saying he is focusing on his work as the deputy president and that everything else is at the behest of the Head of State.
“Mimi nimechaguliwa kama naibu wa rais wa Jamhuri ya Kenya, na katiba inanipatia nafasi ya kufanya kazi fulani, na hizo kazi mimi naendelea kuzifanya. Nani anahudhuria mkutano ni uamuzi wa rais, akiona pengine pale naibu wa rais hatakuwa na ya kuongezea, basi anaendesha vile yeye anavyopenda. Kazi ya ziada ambayo pengine ningeongezewa na rais kusema ‘Bwana DP fanya pale’, kama amesema ya kwamba ifanywe na watu wengine, hiyo ni uamuzi wake, na sina kabisa matatizo na vile mambo hayo yanavyoendeshwa,” he said.
“Mambo ya laptop tulifanya mpaka ikafika kiwango…stadium kumekuwa na shida kadhaa kama ardhi… Hata na hivyo, kama tulisema tutatimiza mambo kumi na tumetimiza nane, mbili imebaki, hata kama ingekuwa mtihani ukipata 8 out of 10 si hiyo ni A?”
He further stated: “Katika mambo haya ya siasa, kuna watu wa fitina, watu ambao muda wao mwingi hawatumii kupanga vile tunaweza kuenda mbele. Hawa wenye kutugawanya, wenye muda wao mwingi ni kufukuza wengine, hawatafaulu. Kwa sababu Kenya hii, wajinga wamepungua mno wa kuweza kudanganyika ati kwamba wanaweza kubadilisha maisha yao kwa kugawanywa ati kila mtu aende kwa kabila yake. They will not succeed, Wakenya wamewaona kutoka mbali, ya kwamba mioango yao ni ya kibinafsi.”