NAIROBI, Kenya Sep 10 – Deputy President William Ruto flew to Kisii town Thursday, despite chaos and running battles between police and two rival groups of youth who clashed ahead of his arrival.
He was received by Deputy Governor Joash Maangi and a host of other MPs before he addressed residents on his way to Nyamarambe, the venue of his main meeting.
“We are with the people and God,” Ruto told told a roadside meeting in the town.
“We will walk together in this journey,” he said in apparent reference to his popularisation campaign ahead of the 2022 presidential elections.
Earlier, police fired in the air and lobbed teargas to disperse the two groups, one allied to the DP and another supporting the handshake between President Uhuru Kenyatta and ODM Party Leader Raila Odinga.
Chaos broke out in the town as early as 7 am as a group of boda boda riders clashed, while headed to Nyamarambe stadium-the venue of Ruto’s meeting.
Ruto was set to hold a meeting at the stadium after a fundraising, barely a week after hosting Kisii Deputy Governor Joash Maangi and MCAs at his Nairobi residence.
“It is the height of barbarism for leaders to organise a political meeting, cause splits among themselves, run chaos and drama and then unnecessarily attempt to drag me in,” Kisii Governor James Ongwae.
Ongwae was categorical that the region was opposed to divisive politics and asked leaders to exercise restraint and urged them to be accommodative.
“Kisii is a known harbinger of political peace, the locals are hardworking and always peaceful. It is my appeal to political leaders both from within and without the county to respect the history of political stability in our county and restrain from evil strategies,” he said.
South Mugirango MP Sylvanus Osoro condemned the chaos, and blamed unnamed leaders for “misusing youth” to further their political agenda.
Osoro said plans by the DP to visit the region were still on.
Kisii County Police Commander Jebel Munene cautioned the area residents that those found destroying property will be dealt with according to the law.
As the chaos raged, the DP was said to have been at State House, Nairobi attending a Cabinet meeting.
Ruto has been holding meetings in various parts of the country to popularise himself as part of 2022 presidential campaigns in which he hopes to succeed President Uhuru Kenyatta at the end of his second and final term.