Ruto backs Mudavadi for deputy PM post
Published on March 17, 2008, 12:00 am
By Vincent Bartoo
Eldoret North MP, Mr William Ruto, has backed Sabatia MP, Mr Musalia Mudavadi, for the deputy prime minister’s position.
He said the turn of events following last year’s General Election would make it unrealistic for him to press for the position.
In the power line up envisaged by ODM as it went to the elections last year, Ruto was widely expected to become prime minister and Mudavadi, who is the deputy party leader, was to get the vice-presidency.
The post of prime minister was to be created through constitutional reforms and Ruto was expected to get it.
But events linked to the outcome of the presidential elections meant that ODM would not form the Government on its own, throwing its earlier plans in disarray.
On Sunday, Ruto broke his silence on the issue amid calls by his supporters to claim the seat. He asserted that he backed Mudavadi for the job and said he would do this for the sake of ODM’s unity.
“I know my people have been asking that I be appointed deputy PM, but for the sake of our party, I will, instead, support my brother Mudavadi,” said Ruto amid applause.
He was speaking at Moi Girls High School, Eldoret, where he attended the institution’s annual Prize-Giving and Thanksgiving Day.
Ruto said the extraordinary circumstances the country was in after the elections called for leaders to make sacrifices.
“This is the time to make sacrifices and not haggle over positions. Fighting for positions would be trivialising the lives lost as a result of the recent crisis,” he said.
Ruto added that it was time leaders addressed the issues that contributed to the post-election unrest.
“Kenyans are asking us to deal with these issues urgently and conclusively so that we can end this cycle of fighting every election year,” he said.
Ruto regretted that the unrest had brought life to a near standstill, saying leaders were faced with a heavy responsibility of getting the country back on track.
Said the Eldoret North MP: “As we talk, there are displaced people waiting to return to their homes. They are all looking up to us to provide them with a conducive environment for this to happen.”
Ruto also condemned irregularities in last year’s KCSE results. He hit out at Education minister, Prof Sam Ongeri, and the Kenya National Examinations Council (KNEC) for ‘trivialising the matter’.
“The minister and KNEC should take responsibility for the errors and respond to issues raised by teachers and parents,” he said.
Ruto said leaders would get to the bottom of the matter and demand answers from the relevant authorities.