“It is high time Mr Ruto reaches out to Baringo Senator Gideon Moi so that we can work for our people,” he added.

Keiyo South MP Daniel Rono said it was ironical for Mr Ruto to push for national unity when his home turf is in a mess.

“Mr Ruto cannot make a mistake of bringing everyone on board last minute and that’s why he is reaching out to CCM leader Isaac Ruto, and he will also reach out to Gideon Moi. Kalenjin nation have to be united before championing unity for the whole country,” Mr Rono said.

CAMPAIGNS

But Soy MP Caleb Kositany dismissed claims that Mr Ruto was out to use CCM to bolster his 2022 presidential bid. He insisted that Mr Ruto is in Jubilee to stay and will be the party’s presidential flag-bearer in 2022.

“We formed Jubilee Party and we are here to stay. The fact that the DP is reaching out to other leaders has nothing to do with the 2022 succession politics. We are building bridges for a united country as we fulfil our campaign promises,” Mr Kositany said.

Former ruling party Kanu also enjoys massive support in the Rift Valley and has embarked on a grassroots mobilisation campaign ahead of the elections.

At the same time, Rift Valley leaders are pushing for a Jubilee Parliamentary Group (PG) meeting to air their grievances, among them the thorny Mau Forest evictions issue, the Nation has learnt.

UHURU MEETING

The move comes as two previous attempts earlier this year to meet President Uhuru Kenyatta came a cropper. It has now emerged that the leaders have stepped up a fresh bid to push for a meeting to have the issues deliberated.

Senate Majority Leader Kipchumba Murkomen, who is also the chairman of the regional parliamentary caucus, did not respond to calls and text messages, but a number of lawmakers from the region interviewed by the Nation on Sunday revealed that they were still pushing for a meeting with the President.

“Earlier this year, we wrote to President Kenyatta requesting for a meeting and the letter was signed by governors Joyce Laboso (Bomet) and Paul Chepkwony (Kericho). We are optimistic that the meeting will materialise soon,” Belgut MP Nelson Koech said.

Reporting by Onyango K’onyango, Barnabis Bii, Eric Matara and Vitalis Kimutai

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