By Eric Wainaina and Mercy Mwai
One of Deputy President (DP) William Ruto's close allies has sensationally claimed that the country's second-in-command has been stripped of his key State responsibilities.
Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen on Monday told journalists that DP Ruto has been stripped of his key roles and that he was being told to "stay at home."
“The treatment he has been accorded is wanting. Even former vice presidents had clear roles delegated them just like the DP was during the ﬁrst term when he chaired most of the meetings dealing with electricity, roads, youth, education and always reported to the President,” Murkomen, who is also the Elgeyo-Marakwet senator told journalists in an interview.
The senator said it was shocking the way State officers were handling the Deputy President.
“Isn’t it curious that DP has been deprived of his roles? He is almost directly being told to sit at home, yet he was elected?” Murkomen posed.
He, however, said despite the machinations by the system to politically cripple Ruto and render him a DP without portfolio, he was ready to confront his rivals.
Ruto, who has always projected the image that all was well in the Jubilee administration, at the weekend spoke about his tribulations and those of allies.
Speaking on Saturday at the burial of Kipyegon Kenei, a security officer who was stationed at his Harambee House Annex, admitted the Jubilee partnership was severely strained.
The DP dared his detractors, whom he called the “system”, saying he was ready for them.
On Sunday, Ruto repeated the same sentiments at a meeting in Buuri in Meru County telling “the system” to go for him directly instead of harassing his friends and allies.
He said he was aware that he is about to enter an even tougher terrain.
Murkomen suggested President Uhuru Kenyatta had a hand in his Ruto's tribulations.
“That the DP is facing an onslaught from junior ofﬁcers leaves many questions unanswered as to the role of the President in the suffering and persecution his deputy is going through,” he said.
Soy MP Caleb Kositany, another DP ally, said they will take the war to the President’s doorsteps.
“We have witnessed a lot of humiliation. We are now seeking an explanation from the President. The Deputy President was not elected alone,” he said.
According to Ruto, the death of Kenei, the ofﬁcer linked to a multi-billion-shilling fake deal involving ﬁre arms where his ofﬁce was used as a conduit, is the latest part of a calculated plot to “stop” him.
“I also know the things that have been planned ahead against me, but I am ready for it. I am ready for it. If you killed this (Kenei) man so that you can intimidate me, let me tell you, his blood will follow you,” Ruto said during the ofﬁcer’s funeral on Saturday.
Nyeri Town MP Ngunjiri Wambugu, however, said the DP continued to enjoy the support of the President as far as his ofﬁce role is concerned, but was bitter because Uhuru had declined to support his 2022 election plans.
“He thought that he would manipulate the government to support his 2022 ambitions which never happened because State ofﬁcers are following the directives of the Head of State who has warned against early campaigns. That is why he is annoyed,” he said.