Nyeri Town MP Ngunjiri Wambugu, a previously vocal campaigner for Mr Ruto’s candidature, has admitted that there exists a powerful clique of operatives working against Ruto and is coordinated by a secretariat in Nairobi run by a publicity shy but respected Kibaki-era civil servant.
The respected Kibaki-era civil servant is also rumored to be the mastermind behind the coming together of Uhuru and Raila during the March 9 handshake and also the push for constitutional change.
Mr Ruto’s allies claim that the clique of powerful businessmen and State officials, some of whom have supported President Kenyatta’s political journey since 1997 when he first campaigned for the Gatundu South parliamentary seat, are working behind the scenes to “cut the DP to size”.
Ngunjiri however dismissed the notion that it was set up expressly to block Mr Ruto’s ascendancy to the presidency. He instead said the aim was to ensure there is a strong running mate for Mr Ruto in 2022.
Mr Ruto has in the past spoken about the concerns of a divided Jubilee Party. Mr Ruto has dismissed such concerns, saying all leaders should heed President Kenyatta’s command for development-oriented discussions, and not politics.
“Jubilee is united and ready to work for Kenyans who elected us. Those claiming there are camps in Jubilee are day-dreamers. We do not have time for divisive and tribal politics,” he said and urged his supporters not be worried about the future “as all plans will remain as planned”.
Besides the secretariat, one that Nairobi Governor Mike Sonko alluded said they were holding night meetings, Mr Ruto is in a political battle with Mr Odinga.
“The fundamental question right now is: Can the DP defend himself against all these people? Can he absorb the shocks and the undertones of propaganda, and survive? The answer is yes,” Mr Njuki told the Sunday Nation.
He explained: “My biggest worry, actually, is when the DP is in this race with no pressure at all. He works well under pressure. He is the kind of person that will be told that some place is dangerous because some politicians do not like him there, and he will choose that place, and forego those that are already intact, just to thrive in the pressure.”