A political lobby, Mount Kenya Youth Caucus, has said leaders and the electorate in Mt Kenya region must unconditionally back Deputy President William Ruto in his bid to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta in 2022.
Mr Linford Mutembei, the chairman of the group that is allied to Jubilee Party, said Mr Ruto had since the 2013 General Election given unwavering support to President Kenyatta and it will, therefore, be time to pay back the favour.
Mr Mutembei said Mr Ruto and Rift Valley leaders should ignore Mount Kenya leaders suggesting otherwise, saying it's the intention of the region and its leaders to honour the 2013 agreement which indicated that Mr Ruto would automatically take over from Mr Kenyatta.
According to the 2013 deal that saw Mr Ruto shelve his bid in favour of Mr Kenyatta under the Jubilee Alliance, the latter will rule for 10 years and thereafter reciprocate the support by backing the DP's election as president.
During recent campaigns, President Kenyatta was categorical that when the time comes, the party will fully back Mr Ruto, although a section of leaders such as former Governor William Kabogo have said the support would not be automatic.
Speaking in Kiambu town on Thursday, Mr Mutembei said Jubilee Party already has a presidential candidate for the 2022 election, adding that leaders in Mt Kenya had vowed to ensure Mr Ruto gets overwhelming support from the region.
"Mr Ruto played a key role in the victory of Jubilee in 2013. He also did the same in August and October. He has been an asset and the only thing Mt Kenya people can do is to give him straightforward support for his 2022 bid and ask him and Rift Valley leaders to turn a deaf ear to a few leaders who have been suggesting that before the region votes for him, we should first go back to negotiations," Mr Mutembei said.