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CS Kindiki weighs in on proposal to drop Gachagua as Ruto's running mate in 2027

CS Kindiki, who was Gachagua's strongest opponent for the DP seat in 2022 has given his thoughts about the controversial succession debate

Deputy President Rigathi Gachagua with Interior CS Kithure Kindiki during a meeting with leaders and security bosses from Mt Kenya region

Interior Cabinet Secretary Kithure Kindiki has weighed in on the ongoing political debates concerning the 2027 elections, labelling them as "tactless, anti-people, and primitive."

In a bold statement released on January 23, Kindiki emphasized the need to focus on President William Ruto’s transformative agenda for Kenya, distancing himself from the premature electoral discussions.

Kindiki, the CS for Interior, said he has been appointed to lead critical programs aimed at transforming Kenya into a safe homeland for current and future generations.

The Interior CS expressed his commitment to this role, underscoring the need for "relentless focus and total abstinence" from any distractions that may hinder this mission.

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His remarks come amidst heated succession politics in the Mount Kenya region, which have sparked debates about potential candidates for the deputy president position in the 2027 General Election.

Lamenting the negative impact of early election discussions on Kenya's democratic maturity, Kindiki urged politicians and the public to cease these debates.

He noted that such talks, coming just a year after the 2022 General Election, reflect poorly on the country's political development.

The Interior CS’s comments highlight a growing concern among some political leaders and citizens over the early shift in focus to the 2027 polls, which could detract from the current government's development agenda.

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Amidst speculation and endorsements involving his name, Kindiki has requested that his name be excluded from the ongoing political discussions.

He insisted that his primary focus remains on his duties as the Interior CS, contributing to the nation's safety and stability. This move by Kindiki not only distances him from early succession politics but also reinforces his emphasis on service delivery over political maneuvering.

In 2022, President William Ruto faced a challenging decision regarding his choice of running mate for the General Election.

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The two primary candidates were Kithure Kindiki and Rigathi Gachagua, each with substantial support and qualifications.

The decision-making process was lengthy and intense. Kenya Kwanza Alliance, led by Ruto, experienced a stalemate as both Gachagua and Kindiki maintained firm stances on their candidacy for the running mate slot.

The discussions culminated in a marathon 17-hour meeting at Ruto’s Karen residence in Nairobi​​​​.

Gachagua had been integral in Ruto’s behind-the-scenes political negotiations with partners.

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He was known as an astute debater, principled, resilient, and a passionate advocate for ordinary people. His work, especially on the Bottom-Up Economic model alongside Ruto, was highly regarded​​.

Kindiki, on the other hand, was recognized as an accomplished professional with an impressive resume, a good record of development, and policy-making. He was a close ally of Ruto and was expected to shelve his Tharaka Nithi gubernatorial ambitions to work at the national level​​.

After the extensive meeting, Ruto announced Gachagua as his running mate. This decision ended months of heightened anxiety and speculation over who would be selected.

Gachagua’s role in Ruto’s campaign, particularly in the Mt. Kenya region, and his defence of the UDA party and Ruto, were key factors in this decision.

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Despite the initial insistence on his suitability, Gachagua had stated that his agenda was to secure victory for the team, rather than personal ambition for the deputy president role.​

Following the announcement, Kindiki was expected to make an official statement regarding his way forward.

Despite not being chosen, he thanked those who supported his bid and remained a key figure within Ruto’s circle. His absence at the announcement was noted, reflecting the tension and complexity of the decision-making process​

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