Inside Politics

MP Kaluma hits out at Ruto’s handlers after failing to join President in Homa Bay

Sunday, October 2nd, 2022 18:00 | By
Homa Bay Town MP Peter Kaluma. PHOTO/Courtesy
Homa Bay Town MP Peter Kaluma. PHOTO/Courtesy

Homa Bay Town Member of Parliament Peter Kaluma now says he is not to blame for his failure to attend an event graced by President William Ruto in the constituency on Sunday, October 2.

The Head of State attended a church service at Africa Inland Church in Homa Bay town, his first tour of the county since assuming office last month.

However, the absence of the area MP and Governor Gladys Wanga at the function sparked debate on social media with a section of Kenyans reading too much into it.

Some linked the ODM politicians' absence to the political rivalry between their leader Raila Odinga and the Head of State. They argued that the residents stand to lose if the leaders don't shelve their political differences and work with the President.

Kaluma criticizes Ruto's team

But in a statement on Sunday afternoon, Kaluma blamed Ruto's handlers for his absence, saying he was not aware of the President's visit to his constituency.

President William Ruto visits my constituency for worship. I don't have information about the visit and I'm therefore unable to attend as I'm in Nairobi!

"His handlers who owed me information cry that I was not in Homa Bay to receive Ruto. Kwani am I the Holy Spirit!" the outspoken legislator tweeted.

Kaluma had earlier indicated that he could not physically receive Ruto to his constituency due to 'lack of means'.

"Just got information that President William Ruto will be in Homa Bay today. Welcome. I'm unable to be with you due to a lack of means. Let there be better coordination in future so that the MP whose Constituency you're visiting has information and is available to receive you," Kaluma tweeted.

On the other hand, Wanga, in a statement on her social media platforms, said she was unable to join the President as she is currently in Mombasa county for official duty.

“I wish to extend a warm welcome to The President on behalf of the great people of Homa Bay and request him to feel at home. I am however out of the county on official duty and will therefore be unable to join HE for the church service and have communicated the same to His Excellency,” the Governor wrote. 

The county boss, however, assured Ruto of safety and a warm welcome from Homa Bay residents.

In his speech in Homa Bay, Ruto affirmed that his government will work with all elected leaders irrespective of their political affiliations.

"No region will be discriminated in the process of transforming this country. This is my commitment. Thank you the people of Homa Bay for the warm reception," Ruto said on his first trip to the Nyanza region since taking over as fifth President.

At the same time, Ruto pledged to deliver all promises he made to the people of Homa Bay county during the campaign period.

Ruto to commission houses

While thanking the residents of the region considered a stronghold of long-serving opposition leader, Raila, the President promised to return to the county next month to commission the construction of low-cost 400 houses.

"I will be back next month to lay the foundation stone for the first 400 houses and early next year, I will launch the second phase for the construction of 2,000 homes," Ruto stated.

Ruto also pledged to prioritise a budget for stalled projects including roads, sewage and water projects in the county.

“I will deliver on the agreements I promised during my campaigns when I visited this region. Together with the elected leaders, we will tackle the issues that affect our country and every sector” he said as he committed to complete stalled infrastructural projects in the county.

"I am aware that some of the road projects have stalled in the county. I am asking that you allow me some time to first deal with the budget and the economy then I will come and finish the projects."

To improve access to higher education in the county, the Head of State said a Technical Vocational Education and Training (TVET) institution will be opened in the county.

"Homa Bay Town has no technical training college, neither is there one in Suba South. I will speak to the leaders so that they set land aside for the construction of colleges so that youths can earn from the project," he added.

The President also announced plans to revive cotton production in Homa Bay through the supply of high-breed seeds.

Ruto was accompanied by a host of local leaders including ICT CS nominee Eliud Owalo.

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