Deputy President William Ruto is said to have made frantic calls in efforts to save one of his fiercest defenders from being ousted as majority leader.
A Jubilee Party National Management Committee emergency meeting is said to have initially endorsed the Elgeyo Marakwet senator’s removal from the powerful position.
It took a last-minute intervention by Deputy President William Ruto to plead for on behalf of Murkomen.
Ruto, who was officiating a fund raiser at the Karisa Maitha Stadium in Kilifi County in aid of translating the Bible from English to Giriama language, was said to have made frantic calls to save Murkomen after word reached him that there were plans to oust him.
The meeting, at the party headquarters, began at 10am and ran until 3pm. A source said those in attendance pushed for Mr Murkomen’s ouster and proposed his replacement a Bomet Senator Christopher Lang’at or his Uasin Gishu counterpart Margaret Kamar.
The previous day (Saturday) State House operatives who held a night meeting over Murkomen’s disrespect of President Uhuru and the handshake.
It is not clear if Murkomen’s removal had the endorsement of President Uhuru Kenyatta, but a party meeting similar to yesterday’s sitting requires a nod from top party officials.
A legislator who attended the night meeting said State House had been taken aback by Murkomen’s statements that seemed to contradict official Government position.
“The feeling in circles of power is that from the Senate majority leader’s statements, his spirit was no longer with the Government… from the opposition of the lifestyle audit ordered by the President to his outbursts over Mau evictions, he seems to have become an outsider,” said the MP.
While addressing those evicted from Mau in Kitoben, Narok County, on Saturday, Murkomen claimed some Government officials were working in cahoots with Opposition leader Raila Odinga to disparage the Deputy President’s leadership by creating a ‘Mau crisis’ and blame it on Ruto in a bid to hurt his 2022 bid.
“The plan is to evict people from Mau and later they will use this to say those going for 2022 have not done the job of solving the crisis. It should be known that Government will not allow people to be used as a political herring,” he said.
This is the second time in less than a month that Ruto is coming to the aid of Murkomen.
Last month, the DP intervened to save outspoken Elgeyo-Marakwet Senator from being removed from the chairmanship of the Rift Valley parliamentary caucus.
Murkomen rushed to the DP’s Karen residence on Wednesday pleading for help, just hours before MPs belonging to the Rift Valley caucus were scheduled to meet and pass a vote of no confidence in him.
“He was at the Deputy President’s home on Wednesday morning. He was there at the same time footballer Victor Wanyama was there to see the DP,” an MP from Kericho county told a local daily on condition of anonymity for fear of appearing to leak out contents of the DP’s meetings.
Mr Ruto, though agreeing to step in, is said to have given the senator a tongue-lashing, warning him against making pronouncements without consulting his colleagues.