A Comparative Analysis of the Political Rise of Mzee Moi and W. S. Ruto
Mzee is now gone (May his soul rest in peace). Some people will pinpoint a power vacuum in the late’s backyard, or a regional kingpin. But we all know there has never been, at least not post 2010. WSR has assumed that role by merit, by hard work, by consolidating power within the shortest time. And one would be doing injustice to compare Ruto to one Gideon Moi. You can only contrast the two. The only closest comparison living is Raila Odinga, but not of today but of the 90’s to the early 20’s. Anything else would warrant direct disapproval.
Moi rose to power while he was barely half-schooled, not anything that one would brand an intellectual. His rise amidst very rich intellectuals in his time can only be explained by a theory that is not in existence now and perhaps will never be established. The old man from Baringo overcame all odds, used political tact, suppressed enemies, promoted loyalists, forced himself to be the darling of the masses and eventually lived to be Kenya’s longest serving president in today’s history. To say the least, Moi became a testimony that education or lack thereof is not the measure of leadership even though this is not meant to disregard education, it is as necessary as important.
It’s uncultured to talk ill of the dead, but let’s suspend that for a second! Mzee learnt the act of using dependency to rule people. Make the people depend on you and they will brand you their demigod. Every socioeconomic activity was suspended and subtituted with the famous harambee. Every socioeconomic engagement was replaced by a harambee. The government’s development agenda was directed to harambee, social amenities were in poor state, infrastructure were underdeveloped and people were disempowered. He surely lived to give people fish, not teaching them to fish. And by that it was the easiest of things to remain at the helm, with some of the lazy men and women of that era today say they miss Moi (Chieth)! Because of culture I will not say anything about Robert Ouko, J. Murumbi, T. Mboya, Julie Ward. These are mysteries that not even pathologists lived to unravel.
Something you didn’t know that I recently learnt is that Moi faced deep humiliation as Vice-President, by deep I mean from as low as from the former Provincial Commissioners (PCs) and even powerful District Commissioners of the Kenyatta (I) regime, a gesture of course entertained by Jomo himself. On several occasions there would be a breach of protocol by PCs to allow other people to meet Mzee Jomo in his office before Mzee Moi would be allowed! And as V. President he tolerated all these without raising alarm, it was this tolerance that saw him rise to the presidency because his rivals majorly from Central Kenya underrated him as weak.
On the other hand, W.S.Ruto rose from an ambitious young man fresh from University. In a record sixteen years he rose from a college graduate to a Deputy President of the Republic of Kenya. A powerful DP for that matter, something nobody can despute allies and foes alike. Only now that he didn’t encounter like Moi did, a powerful group of people from Central Kenya. On the contrary the Mafias and the region at large were all working in his favour, keen to reclaim power to the Kenyatta’s.
Ruto lived to call the shots on the first term of their presidency. Having a good share of Ministerial positions for his allies. The bond of their political “marriage” was unbreakable, they read from the same page on every aspect from political, to socioeconomic, to even religion. The second term comes, and everything seems alright. During campaigns of 2016/2017 Uhuru used Ruto to speak every government lie, from Stadia as far and remote like Kamarin in West Pokot to others as close as the City itself, to laptop for primary school kids, apparently none has been done to the time of writing this article! Following their second term, it is important to note that from Ministerial appointments to Ambassadorial nominations, to the Big Four Agenda, Ruto was sidelined from almost each of them. The last nail on the coffin was the infamous handshake, that eventually bore the baby BBI that is being forced to walk immediately after its birth. On both occasions, Ruto has been merely a spectator like you and I, confused whether to support his boss or simply go wild. Sometimes doing both concurrently! Uhuru is struggling with a legacy he intends to leave behind, something that he is doing it single-handedly having left out his deputy but tagged along his very incompetent Cabinet. Just for the fun of it, since the so loud political divorce or eminence of the same, your president no longer even goes to church. Hahaha!
Their story of rise from sons of nobody’s to Deputy/Vice President positions and their respective humiliations are the same only written different times. Fear these men who cocoon themselves in the shelter of religion/church(The Opium of the masses). They have mastered the analogy of sin and repent umpteen times. Just like Moi, Ruto is a giver(cheerful or otherwise), he has revived the spirit of harambees. His main target has been churches or religion in general, just to remind you almost everyone belongs to a religion or at worst a cult. Hope you can read that from a political angle. Just to highlight the negative side of harambees(free money) from an economic point of view, mostly these monies are from public coffers, the money goes untaxed, and nobody benefits from it( like through employment), simply put in layman’s language- the money doesn’t yield any economic benefits. If 1M leaves the coffers, that’s an automatic (-1M) without any way of returning back. This informs why Economist Mwai Kibaki, former president banned harambees completely.
On both extreme ends Moi will be the most less literate president Kenya had and Ruto might just be the most learned president Kenya will have. History has a way of repeating itself. If the Powerful and rich Kiambu Mafias from Mbiyu Koinange, powerful Attorney Sir. Charles Njonjo, Mwai Mathenge among others couldn’t stop a less literate and less rich vice-president from ascending to power and subsequent staying atop for over two decades… Then it would be myopic to assume that a political genius, a doctor of philosophy, a rich ‘hustler’ by all means could be stopped my a weak Uhuru Kenyatta and an aged tired Raila Odinga or worst still BBI.
Moi rose to power without really knowing the taste of it, here comes a man who is obsessed and drunk with power and you assume a document would yield any results of stopping him. In this regard Ruto can be likened to the famous Nobody can stop reggae.
W. Ruto will single-handedly hurt the legacy Uhuru is so much obsessed with and play sympathy for being left out of it. Ruto is a strong political opponent, he will scheme a way to split the mafia syndrome of Mt. Kenya. Of course the tribal card will play well for him, Mt. Kenya has produced two presidents consecutively and it’s time they also support someone outside the region ( Let’s not play holy, the tribe issue isn’t dying in Kenya anytime soon). The only thing I have is advance sympathy for Ruto’s political rivals.
As I pen down, it’s important the reader understands that am writing purely based on facts and an open-minded analysis. Ruto might not be the darling you already think he is to me. And one last thing, this analysis holds water Ceteris Paribus! Cheers!
Signed, Ole Koinary.