Sentry changes do not bother me, states Ruto
Deputy President William Ruto yesterday backtracked on his demand to have the government reinstate the General Service Unit (GSU) contingent attached to him, saying he was comfortable being guarded by any security formation.
Speaking at St Augustine's Catholic Church in Bahati, Nakuru county during a church service yesterday, Ruto said the debate surrounding the changes of the GSU officers attached to his private residences last week was a “non-issue” which Kenyans should not waste time talking about.
The DP urged leaders not to lose focus on the myriad challenges facing Kenyans such as insecurity and joblessness by discussing the security of one individual.
“I want to ask you Kenyans, the Deputy President is just one individual, we want to focus on how we can transform this country… millions of young people are jobless, traders are suffering and cannot access loans,” Ruto said.
“Many farmers are struggling because of lack of market for their produce and poor returns and that is our priority.
But this issue of GSU or AP is a very small matter and please let’s not waste our time talking about it,” he stated.
“Please don’t divide our security forces. I don’t have a problem with APs guarding my residence and if GSU have pressing assignments like helping to bring security for ordinary or protect them from cattle rustlers and other criminals then where is the problem?” he added.
“And, if the APs get a better assignment where they are needed to help Kenyans, they can even deploy G4S to my place to replace them and there is no problem,” he said, adding that his political detractors wanted to drag him into small issues.
The DP’s latest position was a departure from his claims last Friday that the move to replace his security detail was a scheme to harm him.
In a letter addressed to the Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai, Ruto, through his Chief of Staff Ken Osinde, questioned the changes, suggesting that the AP contingent might have been sent to his home with an ulterior motive.
But speaking in Bahati yesterday, Ruto downplayed the deployment of the APs at his residences, instead calling on leaders not to waste time discussing the matter but focus on addressing the challenges facing Kenyans such as a slump in the economy adding that the bottom-up approach is the best economic strategy for the country.
However, Senator Susan Kihika warned Mutyambai saying he will be held accountable if anything happens to the Deputy President after last week’s events where his security was significantly cut.
She also fingered Interior Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho and Cotu secretary General Francis Atwoli for the remarks they made in the past indicating that Ruto will not be in the ballot in 2022.
“We want to know why these people have not recorded statements to date,” she said.
And, in an apparent response to President Kenyatta and his handshake partner Raila Odinga’s calls for him to resign, Ruto laughed off such claims saying he is strong enough to conquer any obstacles standing on his way, however, big they may seem to be.
“Over the last few weeks, many people have offered me advice some are my friends and some are not but let me tell you, when I joined politics, I knew I would be confronted by problems and challenges,” he said.
Noting that resignation has never crossed his mind, Ruto said he is well-prepared to surmount any obstacles placed on his pathy. He said resignation would be the highest form of cowardice and betrayal.
“Those telling me to quit, you want me to quit for what,?” he posed. “The challenges I am going through are very small compared to what majority of Kenyans are going through every day,” he stated.
He was accompanied by Senator Kihika, MPs Kimani Ngunjiri (Bahati), David Gikaria (Nakuru East), Joseph Tonui (Kuresoi South), Charity Kathambi (Njoro), James Kamau (Kabete) and George Theuri (Embakasi West).