Tempers flared Friday in Machakos at the funeral of Mulu Mutisya’s son when Wiper Party leader, Kalonzo Musyoka, came face to face with his friend-turned-foe, Johnstone Muthama.
It was the first time Muthama and Kalonzo were meeting publicly since the former Machakos senator ditched the ex-vice president’s party in June 2020.
After nearly two months of addressing Kalonzo through the media, Muthama met his former boss at Ngamba Village in Wamunyu, Mwala Constituency during the funeral of Samuel Mutuku, the son of the Late Kamba politician Mulu Mutisya.
Muthama, who joined Deputy President William Ruto’s camp after ditching Kalonzo’s Wiper outfit, was the first to address the mourners.
Saying he was now a Ruto diehard, Muthama urged members of the Kamba community to rally behind the DP in the President Uhuru Kenyatta succession race.
“I want to tell Kalonzo and those cheering him on that presidential campaigns are not conducted the same way village politics are held. Those who are serious about their presidential ambitions, hold huge gatherings in Nairobi, Mombasa and other key regions across Kenya,” said Muthama.
“Mounting a spirited presidential campaign requires huge financial resources and highly-strategic foot soldiers, [which I doubt Kalonzo has],” he said.
According to Muthama, “one of the very few politicians who has those qualifications, is Deputy President William Ruto”.
After his address, Muthama invited Kalonzo to address the gathering.
A vividly angry Kalonzo accused Muthama of being behind his (Kalonzo’s) political woes after the ex-senator “misadvised” him to choose Raila Odinga over Uhuru Kenyatta in the lead-up to the March 4, 2013 general election.
“Muthama, I won’t allow you to mislead me for a third time. You have failed me on two key separate occasions,” said Kalonzo.
“This time around, on matters national politics, I will go to the negotiating table alone. Go tell the deputy president that I will face off against him in the 2022 presidential election,” said the ex-VP, adding: “I do not want to deputise Ruto, and no one will shepherd me to a politician the same way a cow owner does when he or she is taking the animal to the market .”
The Wiper Party leader accused Muthama of engineering a fall-out between him (Kalonzo) and Uhuru Kenyatta in the run-up to 2013 polls.
“I have had enough of being used by other people for their own selfish political gains. This time around, I will go to the negotiating table, I won’t send any go-betweens like I did in the past. Muthama, you took me to Raila Odinga -- twice -- and the results are public knowledge. I won’t continue playing second fiddle. Time has come for me to chart my own course. And, hear this, Muthama: ‘you cannot block Athi River waters from flowing by planting thickets in the watercourse’.”
Assuring members of the Kamba community that he will be on the ballot as a presidential candidate in 2022, the ex-VP said his “pride and the respect he draws cannot allow him to be Ruto’s running-mate in the next general election”.