Ruto Revokes Kang'ata's Endorsement After UDA Aspirants Protests

  • Murang'a Senator Irungu Kang'ata attends a court session on August 29, 2019
    Murang'a Senator Irungu Kang'ata attends a court session on August 29, 2019
    Daily Nation
  • Deputy President William Ruto has revoked senator Irungu Kang'ata's endorsement for Murang'a gubernatorial seat, following an uproar that saw some aspirants threaten to decamp from the United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party.

    Through a video clip that was shared by Mathira Member of Parliament, Rigathi Gachagua on his social media page on Friday, September 17, Ruto took back his words on endorsing the soft-spoken senator.

    Defending his earlier sentiments, Ruto stated that he thought Kang'ata was the only leader from the county affiliated with United Democratic Alliance (UDA) seeking to take a stab at the gubernatorial seat.

    Revoking the endorsement, Ruto claimed other leaders from the region were free to join the race on a UDA ticket.

    "I want you to know that after some leaders visited me here in Karen I said Kang'ata understands a lot of issues and he has a strong stand. People said that I had endorsed him. But I did not know that we have issues. Other leaders stated that they do not want endorsement issues."

    He added," We have leaders who are in UDA but they have not announced it publicly. We have many UDA members. I thought Kang'ata was the only one. Now let me make it clear to you that we have not endorsed Irungu Kang'ata."

    Deputy President William Ruto worshiping with congregants during Sunday service at The Global Cathedral on September 12 2021
    Deputy President William Ruto worshiping with congregants during Sunday service at The Global Cathedral on September 12 2021

    Addressing claims that the party is unfair in its nomination process, Ruto assured leaders from the region that the party will conduct a fair nomination before presenting a candidate to the electorates in the 2022 general election.

    "Let those who want the seat join the race and compete with Kang'ata.  We shall have a free and fair nomination process," Ruto assured the aspirants.

    He stated the Murang'a electorates will then have a final say on who will be their next governor.

    "Let them join the race, if Kang'ata defeats them in nomination we shall give him the ticket, if they win we will support them and let the people have the final say."

    Ruto was forced to respond to the endorsement claims after a section of leaders from the region protested the move.

    On Friday, September 10, the UDA aspirants caucus walked out of the party in protests. Led by Kahio Ngomo, Chairman of Mt Kenya UDA  aspirants, accused the party of making undemocratic endorsements, derailing their attempts to have fair nominations.

    The irate aspirants, whilst banging tables at a press conference, vowed to support President Uhuru Kenyatta's agenda until 2022 over dissatisfaction with UDA.

    "The UDA Party leader Deputy President has always pronounced himself that the party is for the hustlers and it will be built by the hustlers and we have always believed so, therefore we are surely shocked and dismayed and disturbed to see the party leader pronounce himself on some of the candidates he will support in the Murang'a county Monday this week."

    "We find this unacceptable, undemocratic subverting the will of UDA supporters. We are equally concerned that such a move is only perpetrated in Mt Kenya region," the group chairman noted.