Chama Cha Mashinani (CCM) party leader Isaac Rutto has opened up on his recent decision to back Deputy President William Ruto’s 2022 presidential ambitions after falling out in the run-up to the 2017 General Elections.
According to the CCM boss, he could no longer stomach what he termed as unwarranted tribulations the second in command was subjected to by President Uhuru Kenyatta’s administration and Raila Odinga’s camp.
He said the two leaders had ganged up against the DP after their March 9, 2018, handshake making him “suffer” despite holding two big positions both in the ruling Jubilee party and in government.
“When I saw my brother (DP Ruto) had been left out and subjected to tribulations by the Jubilee administration including Odinga whom I had supported, we chose to unite to rival them,” Rutto stated.
Rutto, who was speaking at a function at Chesoen in Bomet Central over the weekend, was referring to the 2017 campaign period when he teamed up with the ODM leader, Musalia Mudavadi, Kalonzo Musyoka and Moses Wetangula, under the National Super Alliance (NASA) in an attempt to remove Uhuru and Ruto from office.
He said his political truce with Ruto was meant to cushion the DP from political persecution.
After NASA lost the August 2017 presidential election, Rutto ditched the camp to support Uhuru and Ruto’ Jubilee in the October 2017 repeat election.
“When my brother (Ruto) went to the mountain (Mt Kenya), I decided to go to the lake…so when I tried to pull my candidate who was stuck in the swamp it became difficult because the force that came from the hill (Uhuru side) was immense and used gravity that it swept him and that is why I ditched him,” added Rutto amid laughter from the crowd.
In a clear turn of events, Rutto has once again ditched Uhuru after inking a co-operation agreement with the ruling Jubilee party in June last year.
The Jubilee-CMM pact which was signed at the Jubilee Headquarters on the same day Kalonzo’s Wiper entered into a similar agreement, is yet to bear any fruits for the CCM party.
Kalonzo on the other hand, just like Raila, seems to be getting along very well with the President, with their parties benefitting in recent state appointments.
Rutto and the DP rekindled their political friendship in Bomet County in mid-January where Ruto had visited to solidify his support in the Rift Valley region ahead of the 2022 race to the house on the hill.
The move to join the DP’s camp is seen as part of the CCM boss’ plan to recapture the Bomet governor’s seat, which he lost to the late Joyce Laboso who was backed by Ruto in 2017.
During the Bomet rally, Rutto was candidid that he needs the DP to support his political ambitions and he would reciprocate the favour by campaigning for him in his presidential bid.
The two leaders fell out when the DP and President Kenyatta agreed to fold their parties — National Alliance (TNA) and United Republican Party (URP) — and form Jubilee which they used to secure re-election in 2017.
Rutto was a founding member of the defunct URP.