Kiambu Governor William Kabogo recent remarks regarding Deputy President William Ruto’s support in Central Kenya have shaken the Jubilee politics.
The Kabogo remarks which had brought Mt Kenya region at the center of discussion as the area has over the years faced criticism for being too egocentric with their votes, have caused many to reflect soberly.
Despite the fact that some top Jubilee members disregarded Kabogo’s claim that the region might not support Ruto for presidency in 2022 describing it as a personal view, many think is a tip off of what is bound to happen.
Kabogo had on Tuesday said:
“Even if we promised someone a seat, we will have to sit down and talk. We will not just give away the seat like that. If you think because we agreed it will go like that, we have the votes and therefore have to be respected”.
The comments have not just raised concerns in DP Ruto’s Rift Valley big ambition, its has also raised alarm on the fate of President Uhuru Kenyatta’s 2017 rerun as his Mt Kenya backup is now uncertain. Many leaders are suggesting the region will probably not vote for his re-election bid.
Kabogo has attracted strong criticism since his statement. Some leaders led by Kiraitu Murungi, Lenny Kivuti and Jamleck Kamau, said the Kiambu governor is only trying to cause problem among the members of Jubilee coalition.
The chairperson of Jubilee parties merger process Kiraitu, said the party is going to ensure Deputy President (DP) would be its automatic candidate in 2022. The Meru senator said:
“We have no other candidate and nothing is going to change between now and then. Ruto is our man.”
Kiraitu added that Kabogo only expressed what he thought and it should not be confused with that of the Jubilee party or the Mt Kenya region.
Kamau also dismissed the “inconsequential” remarks by Kabogo, saying he does not sit in the Jubilee National Steering Committee and can’t speak on behalf of Jubilee or the region.
A different section of Central Kenya leaders, including Maina Kamanda, (Starehe) Ferdinand Waititu (Kabete), Kimani Ichung’wa (Kikuyu), Jude Njomo (Kiambu Town), Alice N’gan’ga (Thika Town), Irungu Kang’ata (Kiharu), Kiragu Chege (Limuru) and Benson Mutura (Makadara) lashed at Kabogo, terming his loose statement as unreserved.
URP rebel MPs MP Oscar Sudi (Kapseret) and his Nandi Hills counterpart Alfred Ketera had also dismissed the malicious comments, saying it was designed to bring division among Jubilee and the country. They warned him against raising political temperatures on an agreement that has already been reached by the electorate.
“As Rift Valley, we are behind Ruto and Kabogo should desist from making such utterances, he is an individual and it is upon the electorate to make the decision,”
The legislator noted that President Uhuru Kenyatta has already made it clear that he will cede his seat to Ruto in 2022 and it is an agreement that should be protected.