Eldoret North Member of Parliament William Ruto who is one of the key partners in the Jubilee Alliance now says there was no pressure on Deputy Prime Minister Uhuru Kenyatta to sign an agreement to step down for Musalia Mudavadi.
Ruto speaking for the first time publicly about the Kenyatta-Mudavadi stand-off said that The National Alliance presidential candidate signed the agreement on his own volition, contrary to Kenyatta's remarks on Tuesday.
"I am sure there is no pressure from outside at least on any one of us. The people that Uhuru may have been consulting may have of course brought out many other issues. When Uhuru Kenyatta mentioned this to me, I thought he was going to stand tall when it happened and I believe that deep down, he wanted this to happen," he said.
Kenyatta had on Tuesday told TNA delegates that he agreed to cede his presidential ambition for Mudavadi after pressure from 'dark forces' who used threats and intimidation for him to give up his bid.
"You saw us showcase our unity at the Afraha in Nakuru but thereafter a devil who does not know where we started came saying that if we continued in our quest Kenya would not get foreign aid; we will not sell our tea abroad, that we will cause war in Kenya. So I decided that instead of involving Ruto in it (I would make) the decision myself because I did not know what he would tell his people," Kenyatta stated.
But speaking on Cheche, a programme on Citizen Television on Wednesday morning, Ruto maintained there were no such threats or intimidation at all.
"If he did not want this to happen, he would not have put his signature on a piece of paper. That tells you the level of commitment Uhuru Kenyatta had towards expanding this Jubilee coalition and bringing on board Musalia Mudavadi and other Kenyans so that we can truly have a broad based government," he said.
But he went on to add that Kenyatta's remarks on Tuesday were blown out of proportion.
"People would just want to look at the negative side of this thing. Was it an act of selflessness? Why don't you ask yourself, how did Uhuru Kenyatta then say, let us bring Musalia Mudavadi on board and I am even willing to give in so that he can run. Uhuru Kenyatta is not a greedy man as many people would want to believe. He was willing to cede," he said.
He explained that Kenyatta had decided to listen to the sentiments of his supporters who wanted him to go through a delegates' conference.
"The only thing that we have a problem with is the constituency that is saying okay, you guys may have gone into a room and you may have decided whatever you did and we have no problem with Musalia Mudavadi. Let us go to a process that is democratic and Uhuru Kenyatta is saying, fine, I am ready to still carry through with this, with the participation of a delegates conference," he said.
Delegates of The National Alliance on Tuesday passed a resolution rejecting a deal that would have seen Kenyatta give up his presidential bid for Mudavadi.
The delegates led by Secretary General Onyango Oloo declared that the deal was not binding to the party as it had not been sanctioned by any party organ.
Oloo insisted that the National Delegates Conference remained the highest decision making organ of the party.
Kenyatta who blamed 'dark forces' for arm-twisting him in signing the deal, vowed that he will henceforth, listen to the voice of the national delegates.
Garsen MP Danson Mungatana claimed that Kenyatta was under duress when he signed the agreement to step down for Mudavadi and that it could only be legitimised by the delegates.