President Uhuru Kenyatta flags off construction equipment during the launch of the construction of the Naivasha to Njabini Road in Nyandarua County on January 31, 2020.
President Uhuru Kenyatta flags off construction equipment during the launch of the construction of the Naivasha to Njabini Road in Nyandarua County on January 31, 2020.
Image: PSCU
 

By Reporter

President Uhuru Kenyatta has rolled out an aggressive campaign against growing rebellion in his Mt Kenya backyard.

 In an extensive tour of his own turf, the President is keen on making a case for his handshake with ODM leader Raila Odinga. 

Uhuru, who has come under scathing attacks from a section of MPs from Central, wants to use his visits to launch development projects and also rally the region behind the BBI.

 
 

The President began the tours in Ol Kalau, Nyandarua county where he commissioned key projects and warned politicians against divisive politics.

Uhuru told leaders to concentrate on service delivery instead of focusing on unending politics.

“Wananchi elected me to work for them and hence I will focus on what is my mandate. I will personally return to this place to come and inspect the progress of this road. Those who are politicking are doing so for their selfish interests,” he said.

Uhuru said no one will stop his efforts towards building lasting peace and harmony in the country.

“We cannot afford to continue having a cycle of violence and destruction of property after every five years. I am determined to bring all Kenyans together for peace and development,” he said.

 

The President’s remarks appeared to be targeted at allies of Deputy President William Ruto who have accused him of silence as his principal assistant is under siege.

The DP’s lieutenants have also castigated the President of blindly following the BBI initiative while sacrificing those opposed to his opinions from Central Kenya.

 
 

Responding to claims that he had ignored the region and concentrated on his truce with Raila, the President told his people he will address their economic problems.

He assured dairy farmers that his government through the Ministry of Agriculture is doing everything possible to ensure better prices for their milk.

The President said he will be inspecting projects at the grassroots in the days to come, to ensure their speedy implementation.

“This new road is key to an improved economy in this region. It will help our farmers to take their produce to markets,” the President said.

He spoke when he launched the construction of Sh1.8 billion Naivasha-Njabini road on Friday.

The President also issued title deeds to Rurii residents. He appears to be assuming the role, initially favoured by Ruto, of launching development projects. 

He also commissioned Githioro-Naivasha road before addressing a public gathering at the county commissioner’s compound.

On Saturday, the President will be at Mwea in Kirinyaga county where he is expected to address problems facing rice farmers.

He is also expected to visit Meru and Murang’ counties in his whirlwind tours aimed at shoring up his support and turning tables against his fierce critics.

Gtaundu South MP Moses Kuria has openly attacked Uhuru for sacrificing the Kikuyu community to please Raila with a proposal for a parliamentary system.

“Now I hear they are bringing the parliamentary system and you know too well that we do not have enough seats. Anyone who can take back Kikuyus to a Parliamentary system may they be cursed,” Kuria said.

On Friday, Nyeri Town MP Ngunjiri Wambugu told the Star that Nyandarua’s visit marked the beginning of Uhuru’s nationwide tours. 

He said Uhuru is moving to domesticate the unity agenda and launch projects and programmes key to the realisation of Big Four Agenda.

“He is in Nyandarua today (Friday). This is part of the regional and national tours he promised to start making from this month of this year,” Wambugu said.

The President has also been facing rebellion and criticism from Tangatanga politicians in the Central Kenya region allied to Ruto over his cosiness with Raila.

Constant criticism from Ruto’s allies saw Uhuru admonish Bahati MP Kimani Ngunjiri during a tour of Nakuru.

The President said the MP was always abusing him yet had failed to serve the people who elected him.

Ruto’s allies from Mt Kenya have promised to take a bullet for him, with sacked Agriculture CS Mwangi Kiunjuri telling the DP he won’t be cowed to abandon him.

The DP’s allies accuse Uhuru of abandoning Ruto at the time he needs him to support his 2022 presidential bid.

They have also assailed the President for overseeing the ravaging of the region’s economy.

The President is therefore keen to use the rallies to fight off the critics.

He also wants to solidify his support base and put his foot down as the undisputed political leader in the region.

Murang’a Senator Irungu Kang’ata said the President is also set to tour his county to commission, inspect and launch projects.

He said Uhuru will talk about the BBI and urge the residents to support it.

“He will be inspecting what he has done for this region including several roads that have been tarmacked, ongoing water projects and reforms in tea, coffee and milks sectors,” he said.

Kang’ata, the President’s close ally, added, “He will further talk about BBI which he will urge residents to endorse.”

The tours come only weeks after the President announced a raft of measures to fix problems farmers in the region face.  

In a move seen as enticing his backyard ahead of the trips and BBI rallies and fighting critics, Uhuru ordered the National Treasury to operationalise the Sh3 billion cherry fund to cushion farmers against delayed payments.

Uhuru also ordered the Treasury to release Sh300 million to the Micro and Small Enterprise Authority for the construction of cold storage and processing facilities in Nyandarua, Meru and Kisii.

The Treasury was also ordered to release Sh1 billion to the New KCC to buy farmer’s milk at enhanced prices and for the construction of storage facilities.

An MP told the Star that the President has personally taken charge of BBI meetings in Mt Kenya and that the tours are a precursor of a mega sensitisation rally planned for Meru town on February 15.