Top Stories / Counties
Thursday, 03 Nov 2016 08:19 EATnewsdesk@kenyafreepress.com
Allies of deputy president William Ruto have vowed to ensure that Kuresoi South MP Zakayo Cheruiyot loses his seat in the next elections. The DP’s main allies from the area, including the deputy governor at Nakuru county government Joseph Ruto, the chief officer for education in the Nakuru government Joseph Tonui and Nominated senator Liza Chelule want Mr Cheruiyot “taught a lesson” for defying the DP.
The Nakuru deputy governor has declared that Mr Cheruiyot, who has declined to join the new Jubilee Party, would have himself to blame since Jubilee’s aim was to ensure all the 11 constituencies in Nakuru County are won by its members. Campaigns for the seat have reached fever pitch in recent weeks, forcing Mr Cheruiyot to ‘hibernate’ and strategise on how best to meet the onslaught. One noticeable change in the MP’s modus operandi is his cutback on links with Bomet Senator Isaac Ruto, who is leading the new Chama Cha Mashinani amid reports that he might defect to Kanu.
The MP is said to have been approached by Kanu leader Gideon Moi, who is said to be regrouping former allies of his father, retired president Moi, as he prepares for what is shaping up to be a hard-fought battle for his own re-election and the survival of the Moi family dynasty. The Baringo senator is reported to have personally prevailed over former Inspector General of Police David Kimaiyo who has declared his intention to run for the Elgeyo Marakwet senate seat on a Kanu ticket.
In addition to his own Baringo County, Mr Moi is reported to have made a line-up of senatorial and governorship positions for Elgeyo Marakwet and West Pokot, and is seeking to retain the Rongai parliamentary seat his brother holds in Nakuru County. However, Kanu lacks charismatic grassroots-oriented leaders, Moi’s advisers believe, who can go toe-to-toe with the egotistical campaigning of the deputy president, hence their outreach to Mr Kimaiyo and Cheruiyot among other leaders.
According to a well-placed source, Mr Cheruiyot, who has been one of Governor Ruto's main allies over the last four years, has tried to keep distance from the governor over Mr Ruto's links to opposition leaders Raila Odinga and Kalonzo Musyoka. The source reported that Mr Cheruiyot's electoral strategy prefers that former allies of DP Ruto in the Rift Valley should keep their differences local and take over a party without affiliation to a national opposition coalition, whereas the governor believes their interests would be best served as part of a broader national coalition even if they have their own political party.
The MP did not return our calls to be interviewed for this article.