Nairobi — Over 20 Jubilee and ODM MPs have called for the resignation of Deputy President William Ruto accusing hi, of undermining state officers after remarks against Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiangi and Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho.
The leaders, who addressed a press conference in a statement on Wednesday defended the two officials from accusations that they are waging a war against Ruto and his allies for not supporting the government agenda.
Those at the press conference included MPs Wambugu Ngunjiri (Nyeri Town), Memusi Kanchori (Kajiado Central), Ben Momanyi (Borabu) Ken Chonga (Kilifi South) and Homabay Woman Representative Gladys Wanga among others.
The legislators accused Ruto of "attacking everyone who supports the handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and Opposition chief Raila Odinga or the Building Bridges Initiative report."
"Ruto and his gang have trained their guns on innocent civil servants who are doing nothing other than executing directions delegated to them by the appointing authority, President Uhuru Kenyatta. The Interior Ministry has borne the brunt of Ruto's attacks and threats with both blatant and coded warnings to the CS and the PS who are supposedly undermining the DP," said Wanga, "Ruto must stop the cowardly acts of venting his anger on civil servants and face the President about the debts he thinks he is owed."
Wanga further reminded the DP that being in his position does not mean he will automatically become the next president and asked him to learn from former Vice Presidents.
"What happened to others can happen to him and the country will not stop just because he does not ascend to the presidency. We are not surprised that Ruto is ranting and cursing with the characteristic anger and bitterness at the people he believes owes him the presidency," said Wanga.
Ngunjiri stated that Ruto is supposed to work closely with the President and asked him to come clean and stop using people linked to him to express his views about the political decisions that the president has taken on his behalf.
The leaders were accompanied by Samuel Arama (Nakuru Town West), Simba Arati (Dagoretti North), Millie Odhiambo (Suba North) Raphael Wanjala (Budalang'i), Anthony Oluoch (Mathare) Peris Tobiko (Kajiado East) ), Women Reps Fatuma Gedi (Wajir), Rosa Buyu (Kisumu) and Jerusha Momanyi (Kisii) among others.
They made the remarks on the day President Kenyatta broke his silence and declared "enough is enough" on the campaign by Ruto's allies against the BBI report.
Speaking in his native Kikuyu, the visibly angry President castigated leaders "who have been going around the country to poison people against the report" launched last week, saying they will not succeed.
"A week before the report was released, they were going around criticising the report ... now that the report is out, they have changed tact ... these are people who do not know," he said, in what was widely interpreted to be directed to his Deputy Ruto and leaders loyal to him.
And he was categorical that Kenyans should "not let any leader dictate to you what you should do."
"You are not stupid," he said, "read (BBI report) it for yourselves. You know what you want, Kenyans want peace, unity and the proper use of their resources in a way that will help the local Mwanainchi."
He was speaking in Mangu, Kiambu County, where he launched a dispensary, declaring, "enough is enough."
While Ruto and his troops, including a few MPs from Kenyatta's Mt Kenya region like Gatundu South MP Moses Kuria and Kimani Ichung'wa (Kikuyu) and Ndindi Nyoro (Kiharu), declared they will oppose the report even before it was unveiled, they appear to have changed tact, to offer it conditional support.
The leaders have set themselves on a collision path with Opposition chief Raila Odinga and President Kenyatta who wants the report subjected to a popular vote, instead saying they want it taken to Parliament.
"I'm speaking in anger because wherever you turn, they are making wild allegations. All over in meetings and various gatherings," Kenyatta said of weekend meetings by Ruto and his loyalists who have made the BBI their pet subject.
This is the first time the President is publicly rooting for the report, five days after he launched it at the Bomas of Kenya on November 27.
The President said Kenyans should not be bombarded with 2022 politics saying "we do not have fools here. We usually wake up very early and when that time comes, only God and yourselves, know who will be voted in."
He said efforts are geared to ensure Kenyans vote freely without fear of violence as witnessed in previous elections.
Kenya's darkest day was in 2007-2008 when more than 1,000 people were killed in post-election violence while some 600,000 others were displaced in the disputed presidential election between Mwai Kibaki and Raila Odinga in what culminated to a power-sharing deal.
In 2017, Odinga also disputed a presidential election when he lost to Kenyatta, before he successfully challenged it at the Supreme Court which ordered a rerun in which Kenyatta won, in an election boycotted by Odinga.