Politics

Meru MPs cagey about agenda of 'secret' meeting with Ruto

Meru MPs cagey about agenda of 'secret' meeting with Ruto
  • So secretive was the meeting that the leaders did not want photos shared on social media. But they were leaked.
  • The gathering came days after President Uhuru Kenyatta lashed out at the Tangatanga grouping for not backing his agenda in the Mt Kenya region.
  • Mr Mutunga said they met the DP as friends and were only keen on seeing Meru benefit from the Jubilee administration's development programmes.
  • Ms Mucheke also said the meeting was on Kenya's growth but added that, "Obviously, all those present committed to support him when the time comes."

The 10 legislators from Meru County, who met Deputy President William Ruto at his Karen home in Nairobi four days ago, have remained cagey on what the agenda was.

The lawmakers who met the DP on Thursday morning include Senator Mithika Linturi and MPs Kathurima Murungi (South Imenti), Moses Kirima (Central Imenti), Rahim Dawood (North Imenti) and Halima Mucheke (nominated).

The others are Mugambi Rindikiri (Buuri), John Mutunga (Tigania West), Josphat Gichunge (Tigania East), Kubai Iringo (Igembe Central) and John Paul Mwirigi (Igembe South).

Igembe North MP Maore Maoka and Woman Representative Kawira Mwangaza, who have not attended past unity meetings of Meru legislators, were absent.

DEVELOPMENT

So secretive was the meeting that the leaders did not want photos shared on social media. But they were leaked.

The gathering came days after President Uhuru Kenyatta lashed out at the Tangatanga grouping for not backing his agenda in the Mt Kenya region.

MPs who spoke to the Nation were economical with details, only insisting that they met the Dr Ruto to push for the region's development resources.

Mr Kathuri, chairman of the Meru Parliamentary Group was also mean with his words, saying only that they discussed "how to fast-track development projects and programmes".

Probed on specific projects discussed, Mr Kathuri said, "Water, roads, electricity."

2022 BACKING

Mr Mutunga said they met the DP as friends and were only keen on seeing Meru benefit from the Jubilee administration's development programmes.

"Our interest is development. When the time comes, we will make our political position clear," the Tigania West said.

Ms Mucheke also said the meeting was on Kenya's growth but added that, "Obviously, all those present committed to support him when the time comes."

Mr Dawood said the meeting saw them "catch up with the DP since they had not met for one year".

"We discussed development projects promised to Meru, a little bit of politics and the need to support the President, the Big Four agenda and Jubilee. The DP and the President are very close and so are we. We support them," he said.

"SUSPICIOUS"

Mr Maoka, who has been vocal in the Kieleweke group, said the meeting was top secret and that he was not part of it.

"I already have money for water, roads and electricity in my constituency. We are keen on supporting President Uhuru Kenyatta's agenda," he said.

A legislator who spoke on condition of anonymity said the visit was "suspicious", considering the President's warning against politicking for the sake of development.

"Does the office of the DP has any powers left for lobbying development projects? Why didn't they issue a statement after the meeting if it was about development?"

In August 2018, the Deputy President held a late night meeting with Meru leaders, who called for his support in fast-tracking projects in Meru and Tharaka-Nithi.

While expressing their support for Mr Ruto’s 2022 presidential bid, the Meru leaders demanded that he ensures road, water and the other projects Jubilee pledged during campaigns are implemented.