BBI proponents accuse Ruto of dishonesty over his latest stand

Friday, January 8th, 2021 00:00 |
President Uhuru Kenyatta receives the BBI report from the taskforce vice chair Adams Oloo at Kisii State Lodge, yesterday. Looking on is former PM Raila Odinga. Photo/PD/Gerald Ithana

Proponents of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) have accused Deputy President William Ruto of dishonesty in his declaration that he will not campaign for the process.

Addressing mourners in Embu on Wednesday, Ruto said he will concentrate on building Jubilee administration’s legacy rather than campaign for BBI.

The DP has in the past pushed for the reopening of the Constitutional Amendment Bill 2020, attracting a rebuttal from President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition chief Raila Odinga.

But speaking on Wednesday, Ruto said he will henceforth concentrate on development issues.

Homabay Town MP Peter Kaluma yesterday said the DPs’ statement portrayed him as dishonest and hypocrite.

“The DP cannot purport to be supporting President Uhuru’s development legacy while on the other hand frustrating his key project in BBI. He is either with the President or not,” said Kaluma.

True colours 

Nominated MP and a key supporter of the BBI Maina Kamanda, said Ruto has never been for the process.

“He has never been a BBI man. He has now shown his true colours, in fact he is the one who has been inciting the clergy.

We have been waiting for him to say No. He has done the needful,” Kamanda added.

Makueni MP Dan Maanzo said while he was not supportive of the DP’s position, he welcomed his call for the BBI document to be printed and made available to all.

“Ruto’s argument that Kenyans have not been given a chance to read the report holds water.

The government must print as many copies as possible for people not to take it as an excuse,” Maanzo said.

Talking in Embu, Ruto said, “Because there is a lot of work to be done, I will focus on helping the President on issues of development; others can drive the BBI agenda.”

The DP indicated his main focus now shifts to monitoring the Jubilee government’s development projects.

The DP said BBI has its owners, and as you have said the BBI report should be made available for Kenyans to read for themselves.

Kaluma who has indicated he will be sponsoring a motion to impeach Ruto, said as the Principal Assistant to the President under the Constitution, the DP enjoys neither choice nor discretion on what matters to assist the President on and those to detach from.

“As the Principal Assistant to the President, the DP takes full blame for all failures of the Jubilee regime.

He can’t seek to benefit from the President’s development success and seek to jump away from the failures,” Kaluma said. 

Tribal considerations 

Ruto added: “When I went to Bomas I tried to point out the errors (in the BBI report) because I wanted to help them, but they are now late because they have not availed any of the reports to Kenyans to allow them to read because Kenya is for all of us.

As for me I will focus on my work which is to help President Uhuru achieve his development goal.”

The DP said the push for constitutional reforms had “hijacked” the Jubilee government development agenda, with BBI being presented as a major priority.

Ruto said Kenyans should not accept “any move by any person” to pull the country backwards on tribal considerations but instead expressed his commitment towards uniting the country.

“I have faith that God is going to give us the opportunity to do that which will carry the whole country forward and we will move together,” said Ruto. 

“As leaders we must seek solutions to these challenges. However, the solution to these challenges should not take a tribal angle or come up with plans for specific communities.”

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