Interior Cabinet Secretary Dr Fred Matiang’i has denied asking Deputy President William Ruto to resign.
Matiang’i, in a statement to the media, said TV station, NTV, “misreported” the remarks he made while being grilled by the Senate Committee on National Security on Wednesday, August 19. The CS appeared before the committee alongside Inspector General of Police Hillary Mutyambai and DCI boss George Kinoti to explain the controversial arrests of three senators on Monday.
During the trio’s grilling session, the media was barred from covering the event.
NTV, in its 9pm news bulletin reported that Matiang’i had called for the resignation of DP Ruto over remarks he (Ruto) made on Twitter, which stated that the Jubilee administration was not elected to “bully citizens and intimidate leaders”.
The news outlet reported that following DP Ruto’s Tuesday, August 18 remarks, Matiang’i called for the deputy president’s resignation so that he “can be free to lead Opposition activities against the Government of the Day”.
Matiang’i now says he never made such statements.
“The Ministry of Interior and Coordination of National Government takes great exception to the false and malicious report carried by NTV in their 9 pm news bulletin of 19th August 2020, suggesting that the Cabinet Secretary Dr. Fred Matiang'i called for the resignation of the Deputy President,” says the Ministry in a press statement posted on their Twitter page Thursday.
“The unverified report is a misrepresentation of the true record of the proceedings readily and publicly available, even to NTV, in Parliament's Hansard records.
“The net effect of such fabrications can cause disharmony in the executive arm of government. The Ministry is also aware that the Cabinet Secretary has referred the matter to his lawyers for further action.”
It is widely believed that Matiang’i and the deputy president are not the best of friends, with past media reports showing the chasm in the duo’s relationship.
Matiang’i, and not DP Ruto, is considered by many as the blue-eyed boy in President Uhuru Kenyatta’s Executive unit of Government.
On January 22, 2019 President Uhuru Kenyatta appointed Matiang’i to chair a committee mandated to supervise all government projects, including the Jubilee government’s legacy-driven 'Big Four' agenda.
Following the appointment, Matiang’i has been the lead State officer in charge of the National Development Implementation and Communication Committee.
The team comprises of all the Cabinet Secretaries, Attorney-General Paul Kihara, and Head of Public Service Joseph Kinyua.
Matiang’i’s appointment resulted in several factions suggesting that President Kenyatta had pushed DP Ruto out of the core of Cabinet activities.