Deputy President William Ruto is a man under pressure after leaders from his own backyard started questioning his silence over evictions from Mau Forest.
With the deadline to the two-month ultimatum given to encroachers to voluntarily vacate the forest fast approaching, local leaders want the DP to intervene and stop the evictions.
While most of his key allies have come out guns blazing to accuse the government of committing human rights abuses, ignoring court injunctions, failing to respect the rule of law and the Constitution of Kenya, Ruto has remained conspicuously silent over the matter.
Saturday Nation reported that several MPs from the DP's backyard who spoke on condition of anonymity stated that the DP was in a quagmire on whether to support the government or speak out against it for political expediency.
“Yes, we would have expected him to intervene and speak out over the matter, but he has found himself between a rock and a hard place over the highly emotive phase two of the Mau Forest evictions.
“He seems to have chosen to steer clear of the issue. Otherwise, this can be used by his political rivals to soil his name ahead of the 2022 presidential poll’,” claimed an MP from Nakuru.
The matter has been a hot potato for DP Ruto as the leaders, both seating and former MPs from Rift Valley demanded that the DP speaks boldly about the matter.
"The Deputy President is our kingpin and he should speak out and stop the evictions.
“Why has he remained silent, leaving our people to suffer?” an elected MP from Kericho wondered.
Former Internal Security Permanent Secretary Zakayo Cheruiyot also weighed in on the matter.
“I thought the deputy president will step in and stop these criminal activities by the Jubilee government,” he asserted.
The country's second in command's silence has been explained by other as being a result of being disowned by south rift leaders in 2018, when he tried to support the government's decision to evict settlers who had encroached on the forest in Narok South Constituency.
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