United In Prayer But Sharp Divisions Linger Between President Kenyatta and His DP Ruto

The President and his DP could not even share a table while NA Speaker JB Muturi's seat at the high table was occupied by AG Kihara

President Uhuru Kenyatta has on many other occasions accused his deputy of sabotaging state projects through corruption while undermining the government from within and later taking credit for its successes

By James Wafula

When Kenyans held the National Prayer Breakfast last year calls were made for tolerance, forgiveness and reconciliation by religious and political leaders alike. The inter-faith religious leaders warned then that peace could be at stake if President Uhuru Kenyatta continued his cold war of words with his deputy William Ruto.

A few months ago, President Uhuru Kenyatta camped at Sagana State Lodge from where he took pot-shots against his deputy for alleged failures in his duties! The President has on many other occasions accused his deputy of sabotaging state projects through corruption while undermining the government from within and later taking credit for its successes! At Sagana the President spoke in his native Kikuyu telling his tribesmen that his deputy could not be trusted with State Power.

Martha Karua at the National Prayer Breakfast

A year later at this year’s 19th National Prayer Breakfast, Uhuru Kenyatta’s last as President, the script has not changed! The country is preparing for elections on August 9th, but the two former comrades in arms Kenyatta and Ruto are far from reconciling, they have instead drifted even further apart.

Despite seating close to each other at Safari Park hotel and listening intently to religious leaders calling for an end to squabbles, the two men failed to bury the hatchet. The two men who survived the ICC scare in 2014-2016 over the deadly 2007 post-election violence that claimed 1350 lives have been engaged in a fierce public spat.

Uhuru has already anointed his “handshake partner” former Prime Minister Raila Odinga as his heir apparent, Mr Odinga will be deputized by Martha Karua in the coming elections. Karua is a former Justice Minister during President Mwai Kibaki’s regime and a fierce civil rights firebrand activist of the Moi era.

DP Ruto appears to be laughing his way out of every crisis he faces including picking an unpopular MP Nderitu Gachagau as his running-mate. Raila’s Karau gender ticket appears to have struck the right chord in the Mount Kenya region causing a major turn-around that has left DP Ruto’s strategists scrambling back to the drawing board! The Raila/Karau ticket has excited a cross-section of women who are the majority of voters in Kenya.

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