DEPUTY President William Ruto has asked all political parties affiliated to the ruling Jubilee alliance to embrace the new Jubilee Alliance Party as their political vehicle for the 2017 General Election.
In a strategy that is likely to generate political heat, Ruto maintained that all of the ruling alliance’s political allies should join JAP and stop hanging on to what he termed “small parties”.
“We have resolved to bring all our parties, including the United Democratic Front, United Republican Party, The National Alliance, New Ford-Kenya and Alliance Party of Kenya,” Ruto said yesterday in Lugari Constituency.
“If we are in Jubilee we should stop this talk of am in Jubilee but my colour is red, yellow, blue.”
Ruto made the remarks even as one of his allies revealed that JAP officials are holding talks to come up with a binding agreement that will ensure that the DP is the automatic presidential flag bearer in 2022.
Konoin MP Sammy Koech said the deal that would see Ruto back President Uhuru Kenyatta for a second term is being worked on.
“We want this agreement to be binding, so that the DP becomes automatic candidate for the presidency when President Kenyatta completes his term. We don’t want to leave it open because many candidates may eye the top seat in the country, thus spoiling for Ruto,” said Koech.
But Ruto’s insistence that the Jubilee affiliate parties should close shop is likely to rub other senior political leaders who have rejected the arrangement up the wrong way.
Kanu and UDF had already rejected the proposal, insisting that they intend to go it alone in 2017.
“All we are sure about, as a party, is that, in the 2017 General Election, we will go our own way,” Kanu Secretary General Nick Salat declared, immediately after the formation of JAP.
However, there is speculation that JAP is intending to form a summit that will bring together at least four political parties besides URP and TNA – Mudavadi’s UDF, New Ford Kenya led by Eugene Wamalwa, Mwangi Kiunjuri’s Grand National Union and Kiraitu Murungi’s Alliance Party of Kenya.
Yesterday, Ruto told the Luhya community not to be misled into joining political parties that have no national outlook.
“We are prepared and ready to woo all Kenyans to join JAP and form the next government and this is why I ask people from this region to join us in JAP so as not to be left behind,” he added.
Speaking in the Chekalini Secondary School grounds in Lugari Constituency, Kakamega County, on Sunday, Ruto urged the community to unite and work with the government in solving the problems that face the people.
‘”We should work together for the sake of the development of this region.”
He commended a number of leaders from the region for working together with the government in service delivery, irrespective of political affiliation.
“We are working well with your leaders, including Mr. Ayub Savula. It is now upon you to support him and work with the government in solving the problems that face you,” he said.
The Deputy President assured the residents that the Jubilee administration would not discriminate against any region on the basis of how they voted during the last election.
“Issues of electioneering are now behind us. What has remained is to unite and serve all Kenyans. This is your government and you have a right to be served like any other people in this country,” he said.
He was accompanied by Senate Majority Leader Kithure Kindiki, Senator Kipchumba Murkomen (Elgeyo/Marakwet), MPs Savula (Lugari), Muthomi Njuki (Igamba Ng’ombe) and Injendi Malulu (Malava).