Deputy President William Ruto Thursday took his campaigns to Meru, two days after Azimio la Umoja presidential candidate Raila Odinga toured the county, and promised to reduce the cost of living in his first 100 days in office if he wins the presidency.
Dr Ruto, who also toured Tharaka-Nithi and Embu counties, said if elected, he will ensure Kenyans stop bearing the brunt of the high cost of basic commodities.
“The farmers are also suffering because fertiliser is very expensive and we will make sure a bag retails at Sh2,500 from the current Sh7,000. We will also ensure the farmer gets certified seeds and other inputs and produces food that will help us reduce the cost of living,” Dr Ruto said.
Dr Ruto’s running mate, MP Rigathi Gachagua, told off President Kenyatta over claims that the DP is peddling empty promises to Kenyans with his manifesto. He said Mt Kenya residents voted for him almost to a man, yet the President turned to Mr Odinga for advice after the repeat 2017 elections.
“You are the liar because after we pushed and voted for you during the repeat elections you betrayed us and the people of Kenya. You made many promises but later deserted the people of this region,” Mr Gachagua said.
Helped Uhuru to power
DP Ruto said he and other leaders helped Uhuru ascend to power, only for him to betray them.
“Be honourable, if somebody helps you, please respect them. I am not competing with you because you are retiring so let me face Mr Odinga,” he said.
Speaking in Meru town, Mr Gachagua dismissed a court judgement that saw him lose Sh200 million of unexplained wealth to the state.
“I am not interested in that money and they can take it, and let me tell them I will not stop supporting Ruto because of the intimidation,” said Mr Gachagua.
The DP claimed that Mr Odinga was raising issues with the Independent Electoral and Boundaries Commission (IEBC) since he had sensed defeat.
“Mr Odinga, you are not competing with the IEBC, it is me you are facing in this election,” he said, this even as his party also wrote to the IEBC regarding the printing of Form 34A.
National Assembly Speaker Justin Muturi accused Interior Principal Secretary Karanja Kibicho of trying to rig the elections, saying their plans would not succeed.
In Tharaka-Nithi, Dr Ruto pleaded with the residents to vote for him on August 9. He said through the economic forums he conducted throughout the country, he clearly knows what is ailing the country and would offer a solution if elected.
He assured residents that he will work with Prof Kithure Kindiki in his government and urged them to elect Governor Muthomi Njuki and other UDA candidates.
Prof Kindiki said they helped President Kenyatta win two terms and that if he is not willing to support DP Ruto, he should retire quietly.
Reporting by George Munene, Gitonga Marete and Alex Njeru