The bickering and simmering tension within the ruling Jubilee alliance precipitated by the Uhuru-Raila pact is an open secret.
What is however unknown to many are the frequent night vigils by teams allied to both sides of the executive out to clip the wings of the other.
Claims have surfaced of a powerful clique of politicians and businessmen opposed to the DP said to be crafting an elaborate plan for his downfall.
It is alleged that they have set up a secretariat and regularly meet in Gigiri and Lavington areas to plan how to cut Ruto down to size.
Those named in the speculation have denied any role but that has not diminished apprehension among the DP’s allies, who have continued to express alarm. They also claim the President’s body language has changed and he has been issuing unilateral policy directions without Ruto’s knowledge.
The directives include the lifestyle audit as well as the order to freeze initiation of new projects before completing old ones.
Simultaneously, the President has drawn Raila closer, to the chagrin of Ruto’s camp, which is reading a sinister move. The secrecy of their handshake and the crackdown on corruption — which Ruto’s allies have been grousing about — have spurred talk of a conspiracy to block Ruto from succeeding Uhuru.
“We shall meet as a community and take a position on our conditions within Jubilee. There is obviously a scheme to frustrate the Deputy President,” said a senior Rift Valley MP who declined to be named.
Last month Murkomen, the Elgeyo Marakwet senator, claimed that there was a clique within the Office of President working to curtail Ruto’s 2022 chances.
“There is a group of people at OP who works day and night to bring Ruto down. They are determined to bring discord between Uhuru and Ruto,”Murkomen said. “They run government operations and their target is Ruto. If these issues are not solved, then we may build walls in the future,” he said.
The statement elicited angry reactions from some members of the party, forcing him to retract those words. But two weeks ago, Murkomen was at it again, with a sensational claim that the Mau Forest evictions were masterminded by people who had joined Jubilee through the backdoor, a snide reference to Raila.
The statement provoked a swift response from the party, which threatened disciplinary action against him for opposing official government policy. Insiders say statements by Murkomen, who is the chair of the Rift Valley caucus of MPs, often represents the thinking in the DP’s camp.
And the DP’s camp is not folding arms, sources intimate of more than 10 secret nocturnal meetings among leaders from the Rift Valley rattled by the covert manoeuvres targeting to clip Ruto’s wings. The meetings have largely been held at the Weston Hotel associated with the DP.
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