Kenya News

Jubilee calls for removal of William Ruto as deputy party leader

The Jubilee Party has announced that Deputy President William Ruto is no longer welcome to the party headquarters a day after he stormed the Pangani offices with over 30 MPs.

Jubilee Secretary General Raphael Tuju also noted that Ruto ceased to be Deputy Party Leader the moment he sanctioned the opening of the Jubilee Asili Centre.

The decision was reached after a National Management Committee meeting on Friday.

The party’s NEC will soon meet to adopt the same recommendation.

Tuju described Thursday events at party headquarters as an attempted power grab in the absence of President Uhuru Kenyatta who is in France on official duties.

“We would like to be absolutely clear, that we serve one President at a time. The DP, a self-declared 2022 presidential candidate, will not be allowed to use the party headquarters as a centre of operations of his campaigns and for intimidation,” Tuju said.

The SG said it is no longer tenable for the DP to use the party platform to advance his divisive so-called ‘hustler’ politics that are counter to the party and the President’s platform of uniting the country and fighting corruption.

“We have witnessed with sadness, the very rude and unmitigated defiance in the face of the President’s vision by his Constitutional principal assistant, the Deputy President William Ruto,” Tuju said.

“Yesterday, the DP turned up at the party headquarters with more than 30 MPs, many of them known abusers of the President. These are some of the foul-mouthed MPs that are on record attacking government programmes like the Huduma Namba.”

Tuju said it was disturbing that the DP invited the same leaders to the party’s headquarters to give them a platform and increase polarisation in the party.

The SG said he averted an ugly confrontation with 40 MPs not allied to Ruto who had congregated at the Serena Hotel and had planned to also go to the party’s headquarters.

This was the third time Ruto visited the Jubilee nerve centre in less than two weeks.

He is putting up a spirited fight to regain control of the outfit from “cartels and busybodies” he accused of holding the party hostage.

The DP on Thursday made it clear that he will stop at nothing to ensure that order is restored in Jubilee despite clear signs of a falling-out with the President who is the party leader.

“We can’t leave the party to crooks. I will be coming here at least once or twice a week to plan party matters,” Ruto was reported to have told the MPs who accompanied him.

He arrived moments at around 10 am accompanied by his allies.

No senior Jubilee official, including secretary-general Raphael Tuju, was at hand to receive him.

Meru Senator Mithika Linturi, who was with Ruto, dismissed claims that the DP and his allies were staging a coup in the party that had shoved them to the periphery.

Addressing his allies at a boardroom on the fourth floor, Ruto warned of tough times ahead for party officials who will not want to stomach his presence.

“Those officials who want to come can come… Kama hawataki waende Orange House kwa candidate wao (If they can’t cooperate let them leave for Orange House where their candidate is),” the DP said.

The timing of his visit with a host of MPs triggered protests from the President’s allies who termed the move a daring raid aimed at undermining the President. Uhuru is in France for a state visit.

“He (Ruto) went to Jubilee Party headquarters to grab the party. It was a raid and a coup,” said Nyeri Town MP Ngunjiri Wambugu.

The fierce Ruto critic said the DP’s visit was a provocative step that must be seen as a direct challenge against the President.

But Kandara MP Alice Wahome, who was among those accompanying Ruto, dismissed Wambugu remarks, saying the DP and his allies were legally “at home” and cannot be intimidated.

The Star

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