In-Laws Who Fuel the Uhuru-Ruto Divisions

  • From left to right: Jubilee vice-chairman David Murathe, economist David Ndii and Siaya Senator James Orengo.
    From left to right: Jubilee vice-chairman David Murathe, economist David Ndii and Siaya Senator James Orengo.
  • Renowned author Albert Einstein once said that in life you have to learn the rules of the game and then play better than anyone else. This appears to be the guiding advice to some of the strategists at the centre of the 2022 succession politics. 

    The succession race has created a deep division between President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Deputy William Ruto but many of the strategists playing in opposite sides of these sharp divisions are actually relatives. 

    One of Uhuru's closest advisors is outspoken political analyst Mutahi Ngunyi, who has become a critical member of the president's think tank in the ongoing political maneuvers.

    Ngunyi is a brother-in-law to former Energy Cabinet Secretary David Chirchir- who serves as a key strategist in the Ruto camp. 

    President Uhuru Kenyatta (left) with his deputy William Ruto (right) at a past church function in Nairobi.

    Ngunyi and Chirchir are married to the daughters of Ambassador Ernest Cheruiyot Lang'at who recently died at the age of 88.

    "We do not know who will become President in 2022. All I know is that it will not be William Ruto. End of discussion!" Ngunyi stated in a past interview.

    On the other hand, Chirchir is central to the DP's plans and strategy in securing the top seat come 2022. The former CS is slated to lead a team that will come up with the manifesto and technical aspects of Ruto's campaigns.

    One of the champions leading the anti-dynasties campaign is renowned economist and political strategist David Ndii who is also said to be part of Ruto's think tank.

    Ndii is the brother-in-law to Jubilee vice-chairman David Murathe - an insider in Uhuru's camp and thorn-in-the flesh of the Ruto team. 

    Ndii is married to Mwende Gatabaki- the daughter of Senior Chief Gatabaki of Thakwa. Mwende's brother, Njehu Gatabaki is married to Murathe's sister, Rachel.

    Not all in-laws are in opposite camps as is the case with Murathe and Deputy Chief of Staff Njee Muturi - also a longtime insider in Uhuru's circle of political and private friends. Njee is married to Murathe's niece, Natasha. 

    President Uhuru and Siaya Senator James Orengo, appear to be playing on the same team as far as the succession politics are concerned and unknown to many - the two are related by marriage. 

    Orengo's cousin, the late George Owino, was married to Uhuru's elder sister Jeni Wambui

    The Senator revealed his ties to the head of state during the 2017 heated politics when they were both playing in different political teams. 

    "My nearest relative would be Uhuru Kenyatta because his sister was married in Ugenya to a cousin of mine known as Dr George Owino who was a dentist," Orengo, after a judge married to his relative, was accused of favouritism. 

    An image of Ruto and Orengo
    Deputy President William Ruto (left) and Siaya Senator James Orengo (right) shaking hands at a past event.
    The Standard