ClayCourt on William Ruto

I was in Ugenya Constituency last week on a private visit and not to find out whether culverts would ever be constructed over the trenches that have been dug on the Ukwala-Ugunja road. Nor did I want to know how many pupils, who had been selected to join national and provincial schools but could not afford the school fees.

I went there to sort out my personal affairs and discovered by sheer accident that a 'civil war' would break out over the refurbishment of the Mathiwa Small home for people with physical disabilities. From what I gathered, the home was founded and sponsored by the local Catholic church, only to close down after it was handed over to the Government.

Recently, a decision was made to open and refurbish the home using the Local Authority Social Development Action Plan (LASDAP). But unless a respectable authority from the Local Government ministry or the Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission steps in, there will be a "civil war" over the manner in which the refurbishment contract was awarded.

While I was in Ugenya, something of presidential proportions happened to the education standards of Ukwala division, or some zone thereof: William Samoei Ruto, one of the ODM-K presidential hopefuls, visited Ukwala Girls' Primary School, and doled out Sh100,000 in cash, Wow!

While the one-time Home Affairs minister was supporting education at Ukwala Girls, I was at Ukwala Boys chatting with Mrs Jane Otieno, the teacher who taught me way back in Standard Three that the herd mentality only works well with cattle or other animals.

Even though Ruto addressed a crowd at the school, none of the people I talked to could remember what he had said. With no one to fill me on his speech, I asked myself if there was anything he has ever said worth remembering since he became a presidential "hopeful", or when he was in YK'92 or even a Cabinet Minister. Ruto is probably a man of few words and a lot of action, I reassured myself.

I think if he becomes the President, the culverts will be constructed over those Ukwala-Ugunja road trenches that were dug ages ago. Maybe he will even avert the looming "civil war" at Mathiwa Small Home because he will not tolerate Government officials who short-change the locals by inflating construction costs. Who knows, even poor pupils who get selected national and provincial schools will attend the right schools since he will ensure that the Constituency bursary funds are not sent to nondescript private schools.

I looked around Ukwala township, Ugenya constituency and Kenya in general and saw many ills, anomalies, bad practices, corruption in high places, embezzlement of public funds, hiving of forests, grabbing of public land…and figured that since Ruto is a man of action, he will bring an end to bad governance.

He has never been president, and he was a minister for a very short period, but what is his track record on matters of national importance? When he was minister, it was alleged that he had assaulted Reuben Chesire at State House. He denied it but gave a terse statement. "Although I did not beat him up, I will do so very soon," he told the Daily Nation.

Whether true or not, that is history, and he should not be judged by what he did or did not do during the previous regime.

He recently unveiled his vision and I have asked my colleagues who have political hair on their chests what it was all about, but they are still studying it. But why does Ruto want to become the president of the Republic of Kenya? Is it because he wants to remove us from the woods, or could it be that he and his cronies have other ideas?

Whatever the case, and whether he is in Ukwala, Bomas of Kenya or at the courts, what ha Ruto been saying?

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