Kenya: Ruto, Kalonzo Political Deal in the Offing, Muthama Says

12 December 2019

The Kamba nation will in the next few weeks chart a new course after failing to realise its dreams in Nasa.

The announcement was made by former Machakos Senator Johnstone Muthama, who said Wiper party leader Kalonzo Musyoka will join forces with Deputy President William Ruto ahead of the 2022 General Election.

DELEGATION

Mr Muthama said consultations among Kamba MPs are already underway and that he would soon lead a delegation of Wiper leaders for talks with Dr Ruto to come up with a working formula.

In a no-holds-barred morning interview with Musyi FM, a Kamba vernacular radio station owned by Royal Media Services, Mr Muthama said Dr Ruto and Mr Musyoka were currently in a similar political predicament, having been dumped by their respective coalition leaders.

The former senator claimed both leaders are victims of the Building Bridges Initiative (BBI), accusing President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM leader Raila Odinga of using it to stifle the career prospects of the DP and Mr Musyoka.

In his usual abrasive style, Mr Muthama accused the two leaders of using the BBI to escape honouring the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) they entered with Dr Ruto and Mr Musyoka respectively.

AGREEMENT

"We all know that President Kenyatta promised to back his deputy in 2022. Similarly Mr Odinga has a valid agreement with Kalonzo Musyoka to support him ascend to the presidency in the next elections," he said.

To avoid honouring these agreements, the former senator said the President reached out to Mr Odinga under the BBI framework to frustrate his deputy while the ODM leader recruited governors from Ukambani as his new political partners to sideline Mr Musyoka.

"This BBI thing has made it difficult for Mr Ruto and Mr Musyoka to demand the Memorandum of Understanding they entered with the two top leaders be honoured, and therefore they should join hands to scuttle the plan," he said.

He said based on what is happening in Jubilee and the collapse of Nasa, it is only natural for Mr Musyoka to team up with the DP.

FRUSTRATE

Mr Muthama accused Mr Odinga of being thankless to Mr Musyoka and the Kamba community despite having stood with him for 10 years in the past two presidential elections. "To bring governors Alfred Mutua, Charity Ngilu and Kivutha Kibwana on board was a scheme to frustrate Mr Musyoka, and stop him from pursuing the MoU," Mr Muthama said, adding that the President was using a similar strategy to upset his deputy.

Mr Muthama took a swipe at Mr Kenyatta for allegedly running a quiet campaign to disparage his deputy by painting him as corrupt, instead of asking Parliament to impeach the DP if he believed he is unfit to hold office.

"Under President Kenyatta's watch, Mr Ruto has maliciously been baptised as a thief, yet he is the Deputy President. This is wrong because there are constitutional mechanisms to deal with any situation."

COALITION

To bring Dr Ruto and Mr Musyoka together, he said he will soon convene a meeting of all elected MPs and ward reps from Ukambani region to discuss and chart the way forward for the community.

Mr Muthama said he had the blessings of his party boss, Mr Musyoka, to pursue the agenda of reaching out to Kamba leaders and formulate talks between the two camps geared towards a formidable coalition.

Mr Muthama announced he would host an exclusive meeting of elected Kamba leaders drawn from all political parties early next month at his Komarock ranch in Machakos County. "Kambas must wake up; it is now or never because it's clear we are being played in the BBI framework and there is a grand scheme to sideline and lock us out of the next government," Mr Muthama charged.

He added: "We'll open talks with Mr Ruto and are already talking with ANC party leader Musalia Mudavadi and Ford Kenya leader Moses Wetang'ula as an answer."

The interview comes only a week after Mr Muthama hosted Kamba MPs allied to Dr Ruto for lunch where the proposed pact was discussed at length.

DISCUSSIONS

The discussions to bring the two camps together come soon after the Orange Democratic Movement, which Mr Musyoka's Wiper party has been working with for 10 years, announced they had parted ways.

ODM secretary-general Edwin Sifuna recently announced that the party's relations with Mr Musyoka ended with the Kibra by-election and their new partner in Ukambani is Governor Mutua, who heads the Maendeleo ChapChap party.

Last week, Mr Muthama met MPs Victor Munyaka (Machakos Town), Vincent Musyoka (Mwala), Nimrod Mbai (Kitui East) and Fabian Muli (Kangundo) who have been drumming up support for the proposed alliance.

According to Mr Munyaka, the talks with Mr Muthama were geared towards structuring an alliance between Mr Musyoka and Dr Ruto.

RETROGRESSIVE

In a swift reaction, Governor Mutua accused Mr Muthama of rocking the BBI boat.

He said the move to reach out to Dr Ruto was consistent with Wiper party style of auctioning the Kamba community to the highest bidder every election, saying this "retrogressive politics" should be condemned.

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