Pauline Waithera, a trader from Kiambu County, has broken her silence following a viral video where she was allegedly chased away from Deputy President William Ruto's entourage during the presidential debate.
In the video, Waithera appeared to have been shoved away by former Citizen TV anchor Hussein Mohammed, eliciting debate among Kenyans online over the act.
Speaking on Monday, August 8, Waithera, who was introduced as Mama Mboga, dismissed claims that the Director of Communications for William Ruto's campaign team manhandled her at the Catholic University of Eastern Africa.
Explaining what transpired, Waithera detailed that Hussein Mohammed was helping her cross a barrier. He did that by holding her hand and back, which was interpreted as being pushed away.
"As we were catching up with Ruto, there was a barrier which Hussein helped me cross by holding my hand and my back. This is what people interpreted as being chased from the press conference but I proceeded to join the DP, and I was treated very well," She explained.
According to the trader, the former Digital Communications director at State House, Dennis Itumbi, was assigned to help her maneuver during the presidential debate. However, Itumbi delegated the duties to Hussein, which led to confusion.
"Itumbi was even told to act as my bodyguard. However, after the debate started, Itumbi handed me over to Hussein," she disclosed.
According to Waithera, she had not planned to attend the debate. However, as she was going on with her daily chores when she was picked up by a convoy and instructed to report to Ruto's residence.
"I was not planning on attending the debate. I was called by Karungo Wa Thang'wa and he asked me to report to Karen urgently. He called his driver to fetch me at home," she stated.
"I was taken to Ruto's home in Karen, and his handlers received me well. He was in a strategy meeting but we later left for Catholic University for the debate," she added.
After the debate, a seven seconds video emerged online showing Mama Mboga walking side by side with the second in Command before she was shoved away by the former Citizen TV anchor.
The video attracted a lot of outrage from Kenyans who accused Kenya Kwanza of mistreating the trader.
According to Ruto, Waithera was part and parcel of their campaign team. The United Democratic Alliance (UDA) party leader stated that they were both consulted during the creation of their manifesto.