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How Tangatanga and ODM became hardliners in UhuRuto truce

Tangatanga politicians have issued serious conditions to be met  before any efforts to reunite President Uhuru Kenyatta and his deputy William Ruto can be discussed.

The leaders backing Ruto want his functions as a deputy president who chairs Cabinet sub-committees, among other roles, to be fully reinstated before he can commit to any truce.

Two religious leaders who were leading the ceasefire drive convened at the DP’s residence in Karen resolved to repulse all reconciliation efforts until certain conditions are met.

The meeting was also attended by senators Kithure Kindiki (Tharaka-Nithi) and Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo-Marakwet), MPs Alice Wahome(Kandara), Rigathi Gachagua (Mathira) and Kimani Ichung’wah of Kikuyu.

Senator Murkomen said the President should have the basic courtesy to lead Kenya in good faith even without necessarily supporting Ruto’s 2022 presidential bid.

“Forget the truce. What we are asking for is simple: respect the DP and his office. Let him restore Ruto’s duties and ask the juniors to behave with decorum. That is what we are requesting. A political handshake is not our priority now,” Murkomen said.

DP ally, Senator Kipchumba Murkomen [p/courtesy]

Another Ruto ally from the president’s Mt. Kenya backyard, Kiharu MP Ndindi Nyoro said team Tangatanga is not interested in a truce because it would not add them any value.

“Why now? We will soldier on as it is. They know their strategies are not working.” Nyoro said.

His sentiments were backed by Nandi Senator Samson Cherargei who said the horse had bolted and they not interested in any political truce.

A handful politicians in the president’s camp have also rejected the reconciliation efforts. Jubilee Vice chair David Murathe dismissed such talks as ‘imaginations of team Tangatanga’.

“Kindly disregard their propaganda. The President is busy serving the nation and those claiming that there is a planned truce are talking to themselves,” Murathe said.

And nominated MP Maina Kamanda who controls no constituency said there was no problem in talking but their side (Kieleweke) can not trust Dp Ruto who harbours ambitions of succeeding President Kenyatta in 2022.

“The Ruto group is trying to use the truce talks to slow down our support for Raila. We are telling them that we cannot be distracted,”  Kamanda said.

Other MPs allied to ODM leader Raila Odinga led by John Mbadi (Suba South), Peter Kaluma (Homa Bay Town), Lilian Gogo (Rangwe)also weighed in on the matter.

Mr Mbadi who is not a member of Jubilee demanded any conversation around the truce to be brutally honest.

“There is no two ways about it. The person leading the reconciliation talks should either tell Uhuru to abandon his peace and unity agenda of the country and help Ruto’s selfish 2022 presidential campaign or tell Ruto to stop early campaigns and help in service delivery.” he said.

ODM politician hide behind the handshake as darlings to the president hoping that he (Uhuru) will endorse Raila for the country’s top job in 2022.

Mbadi who doubles as ODM chairman said Uhuru’s handshake with Raila was aimed at uniting the country and any attempts to scuttle the process would be selfish.

And some politicians allied to the DP Ruto also fear that committing to truce talks will cut them to size as they will have to negotiate from a point of weakness.

They have rejected one of the mediators, a Cabinet secretary from the Rift Valley whom they accused of condoning the whittling away of DP’s powers.

Most of Tangatanga politicians harbour the feeling that nothing meaningful will come out of the truce.

Ruto allies have been kicked from party leadership and house committees, some have been taken to court while others have been sacrificed in what they see as ‘circumvention’ of the law.

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