- People close to Mr Mvurya said that the governor failed to show up because he had not been involved in inviting the DP, and therefore felt left out.
- Prof Mwakimako said Dr Ruto’s return appears a strategy as he seeks alternative leaders to support his presidential bid.
Top leaders from the Coast are conspicuously missing during Deputy President William Ruto’s five-day visit to the region.
Unlike earlier visits when the DP would be accompanied by more than 20 Coast MPs as he criss-crossed the region to launch development projects, this time around only a handful of the legislators attended his functions.
Dr Ruto was seen to have made inroads in the region as he enjoyed support of several politicians, including tens of Orange Democratic Movement (ODM) legislators led by Coast Parliamentary Group chairman Suleiman Dori.
In his earlier tours, the legislators would take turns to declare their support for Dr Ruto’s presidency bid ahead of 2022 as they warmed up to him. Matters seemed to have changed on his current visit.
On Saturday, Dr Ruto’s ally, Kwale Governor Salim Mvurya, did not participate in the DP’s tour of the county.
Only three legislators — Lunga Lunga’s Khatib Mwashetani, Malindi’s Aisha Jumwa and Lamu East’s Sharif Athman — were present.
People close to Mr Mvurya, who did not want to be identified in this story, told the Nation that the governor failed to show up because he had not been involved in inviting the DP, and therefore felt left out.
“It is all about politics. And we are aware that the Deputy President was invited by Lunga Lunga MP Khatib Mwashetani and this might have angered the governor. The governor has endorsed his deputy Fatuma Achani, and by virtue of attending the functions could have been seen as endorsing Mr Mwashetani,” said the source.
The Nation also learnt that Msambweni MP Suleiman Dori has been missing because he has been sick for a while now.
However, on Friday, the second day of his five-day tour during which Dr Ruto visited Kilifi, the Nation learnt that the brigade of MPs was also missing, with only seven of them present.
The MPs who attended the Kilifi function were Malindi MP Aisha Jumwa, Said Haribae (Galole), Khatib Mwashetani (Lunga Lunga), nominated Senator Christine Zawadi, Ali Wario (Bura), Rehema Hassan (Tana River), Shariff Athman (Lamu East), Badi Twalib (Jomvu) and Kaloleni MP Paul Katana.