It was jabs galore at the expense of Deputy President William Ruto when President Uhuru Kenyatta took to the stage at Sagana Lodge to address Mt Kenya residents on Wednesday.
The President, who is on a mission to reclaim his position as the Mt Kenya political kingpin, called out his deputy for lying about not being involved in his handshake deal with opposition leader Raila Odinga. He also delved into the matter of his personal finances by questioning the source of Dr Ruto’s funds.
On the handshake, President Kenyatta insisted that is deputy was the last person he briefed about the coming peace deal before he walked out to announced to the rest of the world.
“I told Ruto what we were discussing with Raila and explained why I had to look for him. He was the last person I talked to before the handshake and he agreed to it. When he says I didn’t rope him in it is not factual,” he said while addressing the charged crowd in Kikuyu.
“You didn’t elect me to just sit as the President. You elected me to protect you. I held talks with Raila and told Ruto that I had agreement with him…We agreed to forge on with BBI. Tell me where I went wrong? Didn’t we have peace?” he posed.
He also admitted to insulting the ODM leader at the height of their enmity following the 2017 elections.
“I was rude in 2017. And I called him (Raila) names. But after the elections and the rerun…those in Nairobi, Kisumu, Trans Nzoia and Bungoma understand how kiosks were burnt. No one was there when I was there urging people to stop seeking revenge. I used my own money to compensate people whose business were destroyed. I had to look for Raila. Don’t accept to be lied to.”
The President also hit out at Dr Ruto for dishing out funds to the public and in churches.
“You can’t do all these while carrying a Bible,” Mr Kenyatta charged.
“Church leaders stop lying to people. Each and every one of us love God. And love peace. And we tithe according to how God has blessed us. Don’t come hear lying to us because you’ve have been given money,” the President said.
The comments, however, come at a time when the DP has indicated he will no longer dish out money at church harambees and other fundraising events. He cited the electioneering period, noting that he will resume donations after the August elections.
The Elections Act blocks politicians from contributing to fundraisers after gazettement of the election date.