Inside Politics

Ruto’s whirlwind tour of Nakuru woos youth with jobs, stipends 

Monday, May 23rd, 2022 00:19 | By
Deputy President William Ruto addresses a rally at Kambi ya Moto in Rongai, Nakuru county, yesterday. pd/RAPHAEL MUNGE

Deputy President William Ruto yesterday intensified his campaign ahead of the August 9 presidential election by making a whirlwind tour of Nakuru County with a bag of promises particularly for the youth.

Accompanied by Amani National Congress (ANC) party leader Musalia Mudavadi and other top Kenya Kwanza honchos, DP Ruto expressed confidence that Kenyans would vote for him owing to his track record as a Cabinet minister and Deputy President.

He said he had played a big role in Jubilee’s mega infrastructure projects such as expansion of road networks, last mile electricity connection and establishment of technical colleges. 

Speaking at Kampi ya Moto in Rongai constituency, Ruto took a swipe at his opponent Raila Odinga of Azimio-One Kenya Alliance, saying while he is focusing on economic empowerment of the low cadre, his (Raila’s) top agenda was changing the Constitution. 

“We have joined hands (in Kenya Kwanza) and our main agenda is economic transformation ... the other candidate is obsessed with changing the constitution which is unnecessary at this point,” he said. 

He added that Kenya Kwanza has drawn a plan to empower unemployed youth by introducing value addition and agro-processing. 

The Deputy President said a Kenya Kwanza government will allocate Sh100 billion towards empowerment of the over four million unemployed youth. He added that they will also invest in affordable housing and manufacturing sector as well as championing the interest of small scale traders. 

Affordable treatment

“We will build markets and a special fund of Sh50 billion specifically for the hustlers...,” he said, adding that Kenya Kwanza will ensure that all Kenyans will be covered by the National Hospital Insurance Fund (NHIF) in its first four months of winning the polls. “The government will pay for the low cadres to access affordable treatment,” he said.

The Deputy President, who also took time to campaign for Kenya Kwanza candidates such as Nakuru UDA governorship aspirant Susan Kihika, said he was optimistic that he will “finally send his friend-turned-foe Raila to retirement. 

 While touring his North Rift backyard, Ruto assured the vote-rich region that he has what it takes to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta.

 The DP also attended a church service at PCEA Langas,  Kapseret constituency in Uasin-Gishu County. He assured the youth, who are the majority voters, that Kenya Kwanza has their interests at heart. 

“We have a deliberate plan on how we are going to make sure millions of our young people have jobs so that they can contribute to the economy” said the DP.  

He was accompanied by Uasin-Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago, MPs Oscar Sudi (Kapseret) and Gladys Boss Shollei (Uasin-Gishu County Woman Rep), as well as Ndindi Nyoro of Kiharu.  

Ruto reiterated Kenya Kwanza’s commitment to set aside Sh50 billion annually to support small businesses.  “We will also put enough in the agricultural sector for our farmers to be able to produce enough food. We will reduce the prices of subsidised fertiliser to Sh2,500 a 50 kilogramme bag,” said the DP.  

He said all Kenyans will be enlisted into NHIF when Kenya Kwanza takes over government.  

The DP  was touring the region barely a week after he nominated Mathira MP Rigathi Gachagua as his running mate ahead of August polls. 

Nyoro said as Mt Kenya residents, they have decided to support Ruto’s presidential bid due to his development track record.  

“Kenya Kwanza is the outfit with a development agenda for Kenyans. Others are just engaging in empty political rhetoric,” said Nyoro.  

Mudavadi led another team, among them Nandi Governor Stephen Sang, Elgeyo Marakwet senator Kipchumba Murkomen and Kikuyu MP Kimani Ichung’wah for another rally in Kabarnet in Senator Gideon Moi’s Baringo county backyard where they attended a prayer rally at Kabarnet museum grounds. Senator Gideon Moi was on the receiving end during the rally.

Mr Mudavadi urged IEBC to ensure a free and fair election during the August 9 polls. 

“We don’t want interference from any government agency.  Kenyans should be given a free will to elect leaders of their choice,” said Mr Mudavadi.  

He challenged the government to make it public who won the tender for 5G network installation in the country and how much was generated from the tender.  

“These are the questions we want to be told to the people of Kenya. We will monitor the election process to ensure our votes will not be stolen. We want the will of the people to prevail,” said Mr Mudavadi.  

He hit out at Azimio La Umoja for over what he called political insincerity citing the way Wiper leader Kalonzo Musyoka was treated. 

“We discovered the same will befall us and I told Weta (Moses Wetangula) let’s flee. See how our friend Kalonzo has been held hostage now,” said the ANC leader. 

Baringo Senator Gideon Moi was on the receiving end during the rally with leaders laughing off claims that he was planning to defend his seat in the August polls.  

“I had warned him (Senator Moi) that risks being left out. He is now in the political crossroads ahead of 2022 elections.  How  can you go upto university they come back to kindergarten?” Said Senator Murkomen alluding to the senator’s plans to defend his seat yet he had expressed interest in the presidency.  

“Just come back home and support your brother (DP Ruto) and we will consider you in 2022,” added Senator Murkomen.  

This has it emerged that Kanu has submitted Senator Moi’s name to IEBC to defend his seat for the third time. 

Baringo North MP William Cheptumo beat other two aspirants by a huge margin during the UDA primaries in April to clinch the party’s ticket as he was almost sure of clinching the seat currently being held by Senator Moi. 

 According to Kanu Secretary General Nick Salat, the party submitted the Senator’s name to the IEBC.  

“Our party’s election board forwarded his name. I’ll not comment about his candidature in Baringo as that will be the prerogative of the people to decide,” Mr Salat told People Daily on phone. 

Senator Murkomen yesterday also faulted Baringo County Governor Stanley Kiptis and Eldama-Ravine MP Moses Lessonet for opting to vie as independent candidates after losing in the UDA primaries.  The duo lost to former governor Benjamin Cheboi. 

“Nataka kumwambia Kiptis kuwa ile fimbo alitumia kumpiga Cheboi ndio itatumiwa kumpiga yeye mwezi wa name (I want to tell Kiptis that the whip he used to beat Cheboi in 2017 will be used against him in August,” said Senator Murkomen who urged residents to elect UDA candidates in all positions

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