DP Ruto caught in protocol storm at burial

Wednesday, February 10th, 2021 00:00 |
Deputy President William Ruto at a past function. Photo/PD/File

Matthew Ndungu and Oliver Musembi

Differences in the Jubilee party played out in President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Gatundu backyard during the burial of Thika Town legislator Patrick Wainaina’s mother, Mary Wambui.

Though Deputy President William Ruto attended the funeral, Uhuru’s speech was read by Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Peter Munya.

 Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria set the stage by asking Munya to hand over Uhuru’s condolence speech to Ruto.

“Like your mother always wanted to be told the truth as indicated in the eulogy, I would like to tell my friend Munya that the truth is, the DP should read the president’s speech,” said Kuria.

 Part of the crowd walked out soon after DP addressed mourners and invited Munya to read Uhuru’s message of condolences.

In his speech, the DP warned Mt Kenya residents that though the President hails from the region, he was a national leader.

“We will ensure that Kenya does not backslide into ethnic groups. A unified and tribeless nation is the bedrock we want Kenya to be founded on. Uhuru is the president of the entire country.

I urge leaders from this region not to reduce him to a regional leader,” said the DP who invited Munya to read the president’s speech.

  Munya maintained that he was sent by the President and that he (the President) has all the rights to choose who to send.

 “ I am just a messenger and I had to obey. I was sent by the President himself and he has all the rights to choose who to send where,” said Munya.

Organising goons

Munya and Kieni MP Kanini Kega criticised politicians supporting the DP accusing them of organising goons to embarrass the President in his backyard.

“Give the president the respect he deserves. He wants to leave a good legacy to ensure that even when he is out of office, you will still get what you want,” said Kega.

 On his part, Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua rallied residents to support for the presidency next saying he has been steadfast in supporting Uhuru in the last two elections.

He challenged the proponents of Building Bridges Initiative (BBI) to implement proposals to send 35 percent of national government’s allocation to the counties now saying the current constitution has room for the increase.

 As politicians allied to the DP exhibited a show of might during the burial ceremony, those allied to President Uhuru led by the host Wanjiku Kibe headed to the family request against political speeches at the function.

 “I will not be dragged to politics because that was the earlier request made by the family.

I also have no powers to tell Munya to hand over the speech to Ruto. Be calm and let us remain peaceful,” said Kibe.  

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