Ruto roots for agro-economy at Kiambu fete
Deputy President William Ruto yesterday toured Kiambu county where he pledged to revamp the economy of the devolved unit through agriculture if elected President in August.
He said agriculture was the backbone of the economy and should be given first priority, adding that the sector can help contain unemployment.
Ruto spoke at Jumuia Conference and Country Home, Limuru, at the Kiambu Economic Forum attended by close to 4,000 delegates from the county’s 12 constituencies. They promised to ensure he garners 90 per cent of the 1.4 million registered voters in the area.
Regarding the forums which have been held in other counties, the DP said they are intended to prioritise key development areas in each region.
He added that his government would implement the ideas discussed.
“After this forum, our team will highlight the priority issues which will be formulated into a manifesto that my government will implement,” he said.
Ruto termed the ballooning levels of unemployment in Kenya as a time bomb which his bottom-up economic model would redress conclusively.
“We will allocate Sh100 billion to housing manufacturing, value addition and agro-processing, all geared at job creation for our youth,” he said.
He said the Jubilee government had laid a firm foundation for the economy in its Big Four Agenda, and accused ODM leader Raila Odinga of sabotaging the same after his handshake deal with President Uhuru Kenyatta.
Ruto said that his administration would do all it can to ensure that farmers get guaranteed minimum returns.
“Value addition will be harnessed to benefit farmers in dairy, coffee and tea sectors, as well as other farm products”, he said.
He was flanked by other Kenya Kwanza leaders, including his running-mate Rigathi Gachagua, ANC leader and Prime Cabinet Secretary-designate Musalia Mudavadi, National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi, Ford Kenya leader Moses Wetang’ula, Machakos Governor Alfred Mutua, former Kiambu Governor William Kabogo and Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria.
Speakers at the forum attributed the ills affecting the country to poor leadership. The alliance will today kick off a week-long tour of the Coast, barely a week after Raila and his Azimio team visited the region.
The itinerary will commence with Taita Taveta economic forum at Voi Wildlife Lodge this morning, followed by rallies in Kinango and Lunga Lunga of Kwale county.
Tomorrow, Ruto will lead economic forums in Mombasa, followed by three rallies in Kilifi county.