Former Bomet Governor Isaac Rutto on Wednesday met a section of Rift Valley politicians opposed to Deputy President William Ruto.
The meeting is seen as a scheme to consolidate a force that will challenge the DP’s supremacy in the Rift ahead of 2022.
Rutto and the group met at Gracia Gardens hotel in Nairobi where they are said to have discussed a range of issues facing the country and the “interest of the Kalenjin community.”
Those present included Cherangany MP Joshua Kutuny, Joshua Kandie (Baringo Central), Gideon Koskei (Chepalungu), Silas Tiren (Moiben), former MP Zakayo Cheruiyot and former Uasin Gishu gubernatorial aspirant Zedekiah Kiprop aka Buzeki.
The politicians are planning to revamp Rutto’s chama cha mashinani in readiness for a serious scramble for support in the vote-rich Rift Valley.
Kuttuny told a local daily that they discussed “issues affecting the community and the looming referendum”.
“The leaders who came together yesterday are like-minded. We have common issues we are championing for the sake of the community. There is a huge disconnect between wananchi and those they elected to high positions of power thinking they would come and champion their interests,” he said.
He said they have planned a series of meetings in the days to come to explore how to market their agenda, adding their team is not allied to the anti-Ruto outfit Kieleweke.
“We are discussing the issues of tea, maize and milk farmers and the issue of the looming referendum,” he said.
Rutto, the former firebrand chairman of Council of Governors, had started warming up to the DP’s camp.
Last November, the DP sent a powerful delegation made up of governors and MPs to meet Rutto at his rural home in Tumoi, Bomet county. The meeting was meant to cement the relationship between him and the DP.
The team was made up of Governors Jackson Mandago (Uasin Gishu), John Lonyagapuo (West Pokot), Paul Chepkwony (Kericho) and Samuel Tunai (Narok). Others were the Kericho senator and the DP’s aide Farouk Kibet.
He has held several consultative meetings with former MPs from Kericho and Bomet counties focusing on issues affecting the Kipsigis community.
CCM chairman David Sang who attended yesterday’s meeting was hesitant to divulge details of what was discussed.
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