In his quest to be Kenya’s President 2022, Deputy President William Ruto has formed a powerful team to lead his campaign. The team has been given the name ‘war council’. The list includes leaders that were allied to President Uhuru Kenyatta in Jubilee and Raila Odinga – the Orange Democratic Movement party leader. The Council will be officially unveiled as the electioneering period nears. The goal of the members is to offer technical guidance and advice in regards to marshalling voters to vote for William Ruto.
Top of the list is the former Kakamega Senator Boni Khalwale, who has recently being a big critic of the unfolding Luhya politics. Another former Senator is Johnson Muthama of Machakos. Muthama this week made an official statement declaring his departure from Kalonzo Musyoka’s Wiper party. Hassan Omar – the former Mombasa Senator is also another former elected leader to join the war council. Sen. Omar has been silent since he lost his bid for a second term in the Senate. He recently came out to join Nyali MP Mohammed Ali criticizing Transport CS John Macharia on his policies in the coastal region.
Another key member of the team is Mr Caroli Omondi. Mr Omondi was Raila Odinga’s Chief-of-staff while he was Prime Minister in the Mwai Kibaki government. It was Caroli Omondi’s building that had been named The Orange House, serving as headquarters of the Orange Democratic Party.
Ruto War Council Technical Advisors
There is also a technical advisory team headed by Davis Chirchir. Mr Chirchir was an Energy CS during Uhuru and Ruto’s first term. He was also the Jubilee Agent at IEBC’s Bomas Headquarters in the 2017 elections.
The War Council also has a gender affairs division which will be headed by Ms Rebecca Tongei and Ms Beverly Moss.
Mr Dennis Itumbi who had served as the director of digital in Uhuru’s office will take charge of youth issues. He will be joined by Youth Affairs secretary in Ruto’s Office Mr Anthony Kibagendi. The two have been critical in the recent Ruto donation drives. The DP he has been giving motorbikes, tanks, car washing equipment and washing machines to different youth groups.
Journalists Emmanuel Talam and David Mugonyi have been working with Dennis Itumbi in Ruto’s media and public relations technical team. It is rumored that the Deputy President is setting up a TV station that will be available in various social media platforms.
Mr Augustine Cheruiyot will head the Agriculture and Food Security agenda. This is critical for Dr. William Ruto as matters agriculture are close to his heart. The DP started his career as a chicken farmer and also serve as an Agriculture Cabinet Secretary.
Political and Legal affairs will be lead by Dr Korir Sing’oei. He has been in charge of policy and law in Dr Ruto’s office. Geoffrey Kaituko will handle matters health and social issues. Mr Kaituko is a former Turkana County Assembly Speaker.
The formation of the War Council is the second move after DP Ruto established the Jubilee Asili Center. This is a parallel office located along Makindu Road in Kilimani. In the first meeting, 20 Members of Parliament affiliated to Ruto’s Tangatanga. These are mostly those ousted by the Jubilee Party from leadership positions and key parliamentary committees.
See the changes Jubilee made in parliament https://kenyanewschannel.co.ke/murkomen-out-new-senate-jubilee-leadership/
Kipchumba Murkomen – Ruto’s chief supporter and Elgeyo Marakwet Senator said that the leaders had been blocked from accessing Jubilee Party Headquarters. The senator said that the Jubilee Asili center is a place for the Jubilee leaders who believe in the original idea of the party.
The meeting happened a day after Jubilee Party Secretary General Raphael Tuju and Vice-Chairman David Murathe hosted Chama Cha Mashinani’s Isaac Ruto and Wiper‘s Kalonzo Musyoka at the party headquarters in Pangani along Thika Road. The two leaders signed a cooperation agreement with the Jubilee.
The Jubilee Asili has been serving as an informal place where Tangatanga leaders have been holding their meetings.
Other leaders expected to be part of the war council are MPs Gladys Shollei of Uasin Gishu, Kimani Ichung’wa of Kikuyu and William Cheptumo of Baringo. Others include Oscar Sudi of Kapseret Kimani Ngunjiri of Bahati, Moses Kuria of Gatundu South, Alice Wahome of Kandara, and Senator Susan Kihika of Nakuru.
By Priscilla Cherono