DP Ruto starts two-day visit of Nyanza
2 weeks ago, 00:07
Deputy President William Ruto today heads to Migori and Homa Bay counties, where he is expected to commission development projects.
It will be the first time the Deputy President will be officially visiting Luo Nyanza since last year's General Election that resulted in prolonged and bloody protests in the region.
Nyanza, where Mr Ruto is expected to pitch tent for two days, is the home turf and political bedrock of his erstwhile political nemesis and Opposition leader Raila Odinga.
In the past, Ruto had given Luo Nyanza a wide berth, only frequenting neigbouring Kisii and Nyamira counties, and the two Kuria constituencies in Migori.
While the visit has been billed as one where he will commission several ongoing projects, observers see it as part of the DP's charm offensive to woo the vote-rich region as he marshals support for his 2022 presidential bid.
It comes just three days after President Uhuru Kenyatta and Raila joined Ruto for lunch at his Karen home, and hours after Raila left the country for the United Kingdom.
While it was unclear whether the Friday lunch was planned, it was the first time Ruto was hosting both Raila and Uhuru since the March 9 handshake. It also came at a time the DP's handlers were mulling over what kind of reception he would get in the Opposition stronghold, given his rocky relations with ODM leaders.
Ruto hosted the leaders after attending the requiem mass of former Maendeleo ya Wanawake chair Jane Kiano at ACK St Francis, Karen.
Just hours before his trip to Nyanza, Ruto was in Kakamega, where he spoke of forming an inclusive government if elected President.
"I will ensure all regions benefit from the national cake, irrespective of political affiliations. We have moved from tribal politics to development-based politics. Let us only compete on ideologies and not hatred since divisive politics will destroy the country,” Ruto said at Malava Primary School during an interdenominational service to raise funds for 14 churches.
More than Sh20 million was raised.
The DP said he was ready to work with all leaders if he became president. "I'm responsible to develop all regions the way we are currently doing as the Jubilee administration."
According to Ruto, despite the fact that western Kenya only gave Jubilee five per cent of total votes cast in the 2017 polls, the party gave senior positions to Luhya leaders.
“The position of the chief whip, three Cabinet secretary slots and Speaker’s post. We overlooked the fact that you supported our political competitors and ensured there was regional balancing. In 2022, I will work for all Kenyans."
The DP urged Luhya leaders interest in the presidency to join hands and work together.
“I want to form the government with you people (Mulembe nation). I am urging the Luhya political leaders to stop guesswork like was the case in 2013 and 2017, but join the winning team. Let us not remain in the cold this time round."
Ruto said cane farmers would start receiving Sh2.6 billion from ...
Category: politics news