Deputy President William Ruto has told off critics of his frequent countrywide tours and harambees, especially for churches.
Speaking to religious leaders at Thika’s Blue Post Hotel on Sunday, Ruto did not reveal the source of his money, only telling his critics he is not bothered by scrutiny.
Like President Kenyatta and other leaders, Ruto will be subjected to a lifestyle audit in the war on corruption.
“Wengine wananikashifu eti huyu anazunguka kwenye makanisa, eti ninatoa pesa pale na pale, sijui nini… Shauri yao. Mimi nina invest kwa mambo ya mbinguni. Wewe ukitaka kuinvest mahali pengine… si kila mtu ako na uhuru wa kuinvest pahali anataka?”
(“Some people condemn me for going around, raising money here and there and in church. It’s up to them. I’m investing in heavenly matters. If you want to invest elsewhere, that is your right.”)
“Kuna wengine wanainvest kwa mazishi…basi waendelee…. ama namna gani? Si demokrasia ni namna hiyo? …basi tuendelee.”
(“Some people invest in funerals, let them continue. Isn’t that democracy? Let’s go on.”)
ODM leader Raila Odinga has questioned the source of Ruto’s funds, which he has been donating in harambees across the country. Raila has also challenged his former deputy to take a lifestyle audit, saying he is living beyond his means, as his salary is known.
The opposition leader asked Ruto to stop campaigning across the country and instead focus on his job as Deputy President.
“Wacha kurandaranda hapa na pale, kutangatanga ati wewe utakuwa rais mwaka 2022.” (“Stop loitering around here and there, claiming you will be President in 2022.”)
“How do you know [that you will be President?” It’s Kenyans who elect their President. Then you pour money here and there and then say ‘we do a lifestyle audit’,” Raila said.
But Ruto on Sunday, without referring to anyone, said he had done nothing wrong. He said he was happy to meet and work with religious leaders because he knows the value of doing so. “This is a good thing. No leader succeeds without the prophets. The President and I will not slow down on the development agenda,” he said at St Benedict Catholic Church in Ngoingwa in Thika.