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It has emerged that the organizers of this year’s national prayer breakfast were not expecting Deputy President William Ruto in yesterday’s event.
The omission of Ruto’s name from the official programme has not been taken lightly by two legislators from Rift Valley who interpreted it as an intentional move to embarrass their man.
The DP has of late been on the receiving end from a section of Jubilee Party members and opposition leaders, who have a closer working relationship with President Uhuru Kenyatta through the handshake. One MP was overheard blaming the omission on the handshake politics and internal Jubilee wars that recently rocked the ruling outfit.
Learning of the omission, Ruto went on the offensive and rubbed almost everyone the wrong way.
ODM Secretary-General Edwin Sifuna criticized the DP for “turning a solemn occasion of prayer into another platform to take another swipe at Raila”.
At the meeting that took place at Safari Park hotel in Nairobi, Lord Michael Hastings, a member of UK’s Upper House, wondered whether Kenya could spare one of its leaders to take up the British prime minister job.
“We are just wondering if you have a spare prime minister around,” Dr Hastings said, causing laughter.
After the request, the DP had an answer for him.
He said, “We have a retired one in Kenya and since the Constitution has abolished that position in Kenya, and he may not have it anytime soon, we will send you his CV, maybe you can consider him.”
Sifuna said he was not amused with the DP’s remarks
Sifuna said Raila has neither asked for, nor needs Dr Ruto’s help to find a job and that it is not lost on him that it was Mr Odinga who gave Dr Ruto a job as a minister in the Grand Coalition Government.
“This is laughable because we all know who has capacity to find employment for the other,” Mr Sifuna said.
“Our young people require jobs, even as the DP obsesses with offering Mr Odinga jobs at every turn. We shall soon be calling all the unemployed youth in this country to bring their CVs, march to the DPs office and dump them there so he can find them jobs, as that should be his focus.”
But Raila was not the only one he went for.
In a message that appeared directed at President Uhuru Kenyatta, the DP stated that not all tycoons from humble beginnings should be construed to be thieves.
Ruto said that when Uhuru’s father – founding President Jomo Kenyatta — died in 1978, he was herding cattle barefoot in Kamagut village and thought Mzee’s demise was “the end of the world”.
However, 41 years later, he is dining with Kenyatta’s son, in a clear demonstration that he has earned his stripes to sit at the high table.
“In 1978, when our founding father passed on, I remember it very well because we were on school holiday. I was looking after my father’s cows, we had to take them home, we ran literally because, in my mind, I thought it was the end of the world.”
He went on, “In 1980, when I was in Standard 7 preparing for CPE, I went to do exams barefoot because it was the nature of the village. My father bought me my first shoes in 1981 for Sh60 from a Mr Onyango on the street because he could not afford Bata shoes.
“Why am I saying this? Today, as you can see, the gentleman who did not have shoes is sitting at the high table with the son of the founding father.”
Uhuru’s allies have hit out at Ruto over insinuations that Uhuru is who he is because of his father while Ruto was self-made.
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