I've no apologies, Gachagua says over controversial govt ‘shareholders’ remarks

DP Rigathi Gachagua

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua speaking at Kangocho Secondary School in Nyeri on March 29, 2023. 

Photo credit: Joseph Kanyi | Nation Media Group

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua has said he has no apologies to make over his controversial “shareholders” remarks.

Mr Gachagua insisted that top state appointments will be given to President William Ruto’s supporters who campaigned and voted for the Kenya Kwanza coalition in last year’s presidential polls.

The DP revisited the subject at Kangocho Secondary School in Mathira Constituency on Wednesday. He said that those who opposed the election of President Ruto will have to wait a bit longer as those who stood with the President “harvest to the maximum”.

Speaking in vernacular, the DP described President Ruto's administration as a company of few individuals. He said the shareholders must benefit first.

“When we were sowing, some people were discouraging us, they were telling us that the seeds we were planting would not germinate and we would never harvest anything. Now that we are harvesting, they want to be on the frontline. Is this really possible? I repeat here that those who had sown must be allowed to harvest first,” he said.

15 principal secretaries

And on his pet “Mt Kenya region first” Mr Gachagua said the region had benefited a lot from the Ruto administration, having bagged 10 Cabinet secretary slots, 15 principal secretaries and 14 Chief Administrative Secretaries. He paraded some of the recently, albeit controversially appointed CAS’s led by businessman Dan Wamahiu (Agriculture), former Laikipia Woman Rep Cate Waurugu (Foreign Affairs) and Simon Gikuru from Murang’a

“When you are going for an election, you should be wise enough and position yourself properly. Even in the 2027 election, we in Mt Kenya are well prepared so that when the cake is put on the table, we can ask for our share. We gave Ruto 47 per cent of the votes (in the August 2022 elections) but in 2027, we hope to give him more than 60 per cent. We have invested in President Ruto because he is honest and we must reap,” he said.

The DP came under heavy criticism from the opposition over his remarks with some leaders terming his utterances as unfortunate.

Suna East MP Junet Mohamed, a close ally of opposition chief Raila Odinga claimed that the government is becoming a personal fiefdom.

“If the Republic is considered as a company owned by two individuals, why should Kenyans pay taxes?” he said in a tweet after Gachagua’s remarks in February.