DP Ruto castigates Governors Mandago, Tolgos over Moi University protests

File image of Deputy President William Ruto during a past interview.
File image of Deputy President William Ruto during a past interview.

Deputy President William Ruto has condemned actions by a section of leaders from Rift Valley who are opposed to the appointment of Laban Ayiro as Moi University’s acting vice chancellor.

Speaking to journalists on the sidelines of the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, Ruto said that public appointments should be made based on merit and not tribal or religious affiliation.

Last week Uasin Gishu Governor Jackson Mandago and his Elgeyo Marakwet counterpart Alex Tolgos stormed Moi University to protest the appointment of Professor Ayiro, terming him an outsider.

The leaders have since received wide condemnation from a section of political leaders including Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery who has called on National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) chair Francis Ole Kaparo to take action against the two leaders.

Budalang’i MP Ababu Namwamba and Amani National Congress leader Musalia Mudavadi have also come out to condemn the governors’ actions terming them a contravention of Article 10 of the Constitution.

“Nobody should be denied an opportunity in Kenya because of his religion or where he comes from. Public appointments should be made purely on merit with those who finish top in interviews being given priority.”

The leaders had wanted the appointment of Professor Ayiro revoked and the position given to Professor Isaac Kosgei.

“President Uhuru Kenyatta and I are consolidating the country so that we can run the public affairs on the basis of competitive politics, as we eliminate issues of ethnicity and religion,” he said.

He further noted that the launch of Jubilee Party was based on the political lessons learnt in the past and in a bid to lead the country into development-based politics.

“I am very happy because of what we have done, even our competitors from the other side who were laughing at us are now boxed in. I saw the other day they are beginning to have a discussion on how they will have CORD as a single political party.”

“To me that’s a positive development because it will change Kenyan politics from that of divisions to one that is focused on policies which political parties stand for and what they can do to help move the country to the next level.”

The deputy president further clarified that his success was from his own hard work, having not undergone any shortcuts or been appointed to any position.

“I understand that many people have a problem with the son of a peasant coming this far, because it normally doesn’t happen. They should wake up to a new reality that every child in Kenya must have an equal chance.”

Despite the protests, Professor Ayiro was confirmed as the acting vice chancellor for a period of three months, following the exit of Professor Richard Mibey.

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Story By Ann Mumbi
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